Some things you just can't get rid of
There are some things in life that just won't go away. A drug-resistant case of gonorrhea. Delinquency notices from the IRS. And Mark Nickolas.
The former Ben Chandler campaign manager who later gained infamy as the blogger behind bluegrassreport.org has announced his site's comeback. While Nickolas is still in Montana, he says he plans to comment on Kentucky's role in federal races and has promised a big announcement on Monday of a Kentucky-based contributor who he describes as wired in to the Bluegrass State's political scene.
One of the best descriptions we've seen of Nickolas and his site -- and indeed, one we've used ourselves -- is that the blogger and his blog are a cancer on Kentucky's political landscape. Indeed, we blame Nickolas for poisoning and cheapening the political discourse in this state. His affinity for foul language and his penchant for playing fast and loose with the truth earned nicknames like "slander blog" for his site while inspiring several other Kentucky sites that have carried on his tradition for vulgarity and untruthfulness, including Barefoot & Progressive, Bluegrass Roots (which actually predated Bluegrass Report) and Ditch Mitch. Bloggers there and at several other liberal Democrat Kentucky sites think frequent use of the F-word and screeching hatred for all things conservative and/or Christian is a suitable substitute for intelligent analysis and discussion of issues facing Kentuckians.
Then again, honest discussion was never welcomed on Bluegrass Report. What few conservatives that actually did post there, including some insiders in the Fletcher administration who tried to educate Nickolas and his sycophants as to what was really going on behind the scenes, were basically chased off the site by the hateful Democrats who already had their minds made up and were unwilling to confront or consider the truth.
Nickolas himself has a spotty history in Kentucky. Originally brought to the state by Jody Richards to run his 2003 gubernatorial primary campaign, Nickolas' stock shot up when Richards came oh-so-close to defeating Chandler. Never mind that the reason Richards came so close was because Bruce Lunsford pulled out of the race in the days before the primary, and the anti-Chandler vote went to Richards. Nickolas moved over to manager Chandler's failed gubernatorial campaign that fall and eventually channeled his bitterness at losing to Fletcher into his anti-Fletcher blog. He also found himself on the wrong end of more than one lawsuit (including one for defamation over a Bluegrass Report post) and a tax evasion investigation. He also led a "Draft Ken Lucas" movement that got Lucas into the race for his old House of Representatives seat against incumbent Geoff Davis in 2006; a race Lucas lost badly. Nickolas eventually fled to Montana, where he tried his hand with a Rocky Mountain regional blog and later a national blog. After his departure, he tried to run Bluegrass Report with guest posters including John Y. Brown III, but the site languished. The perception that Nickolas had cut a deal with Jonathan Miller to promote Miller's failed gubernatorial bid in 2007 also cut into Nickolas' credibility. We've also heard that his relationship with Miller put a serious crimp in his attempts to sell the blog and the domain name.
Yet Nickolas is trying a comeback in Kentucky. Much like a penicillin-resistant strain of VD, or a bad check, he returns, unwanted and unbidden, to spread his poison in a state where he no longer lives. A few of his loyal toadies are already welcoming him back. As for us, we'll be waiting to see who his "Kentucky political expert" is. No doubt it'll be some worn-out Democrat hack who wouldn't recognize the truth if it smacked him in the face like a wet trout jumping out of a creel.
In the meantime, we will monitor the "slander blog" for anything blatantly obnoxious or untrue, while at the same time realizing that its proprietor has exactly zero credibility among intelligent Kentuckians.
And we'll encourage the drug companies to come up with a stronger dose of VD medicine to cure Kentucky's case of the clap.