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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on October 6, 2010 5:44 AM. The previous post in this blog was Give the 'dog a bone. The next post in this blog is Portland police pension system broke IRS rules. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Dudley pushed another envelope on taxes

Nigel Jaquiss over at WW has raked in some choice muck: Gubernatorial candidate Chris Dudley took a large tax deduction in 2004 for allowing the Lake Oswego fire department to burn down a house on his property that he didn't want, so that he could build his new McMansion on the site.

It's not a completely preposterous deduction -- the U.S. Tax Court (the nation's main tax court) has allowed it in at least one case -- but certainly there are lots of questions. To give just one example, the value Dudley reportedly placed on the unwanted house, $350,000, could be challenged. The key is whether that's the fair market value of the building -- what a hypothetical buyer would pay for it. The issue is not its value to Dudley (which was zero, obviously) and not its value to the fire department (which was probably less than $350,000), but what a reasonably informed buyer would pay a reasonably informed seller for the building. Dudley got an appraisal of the house, but as we've all learned in recent years, sometimes appraisals are inflated.

You have to wonder what kind of shape Dudley left the place in before he handed it over to the firefighters to burn. One would think that it would have been stripped of anything nice -- anything expensive -- which would in turn have reduced its fair market value. But who knows? Maybe the big guy let them torch some valuable fixtures.

Another issue is whether the deduction is really "a loss sustained on account of... demolition" of the structure, in which case the tax code expressly disallows it, and has done so since 1976. (The old favorable Tax Court case discussed earlier pre-dated that provision of the tax law.) Perhaps Dudley could argue that it wasn't a loss on demolition, but instead a loss on the transfer to the firefighters.

There's also a question of how one can give away a house without transferring the underlying land, but that's been known to happen. People own their houses on leased land in many locales -- it's not that unusual. And so the basic concept doesn't seem all that outrageous. But was there a deed for the building? Was it recorded? WW doesn't say.

If the IRS wanted to challenge the deduction, it would probably have to have done so before now. Barring unusual circumstances, the statute of limitations in a case such as this is three years from filing the return, which would mean that unless the former Blazer center has extended the limitations period, it expired a couple of years ago.

But when you add this new story to the tale of his apparent move to Camas, Washington, to avoid Oregon income taxes (although still living part time in a Portland home), Dudley emerges as a guy who plays multiple games with the tax laws. And we'd probably bet you a nickel that there is more tax shelter activity where these two moves came from. The guy seems smart with money -- but maybe too smart for politics.

Should it matter? Does this aspect of his character affect his ability to govern? Hard to say. But it doesn't help his chances in the election.

UPDATE, 11:28 a.m.: We just discovered that nice guy Brian Grant did the same thing as Dudley with another Lake Oswego house.

Comments (62)

Sounds more like a hit piece than investigative reporting.

I haven't been reading WW lately. Did they investigate Kitz's questionable loan deal?

Gee - a lefty hit piece on the first Republican with a chance of winning the Governorship in 20 years. Something smells of desperation...

Should it matter? Does this aspect of his character affect his ability to govern? Hard to say. But it doesn't help his chances in the election.

I think Dudley has a pretty good chance at this point.

I live in pretty much the same area of town as you do Jack and I'm seeing a lot more Dudley signs and bumper stickers in the Irvington/Alameda area than I ever saw for either Saxton (a few) or Mannix (none) in the last two elections.

We'll know for sure in 4 weeks.

"The guy seems smart with money -- but maybe too smart for politics."

Too smart?

Suppose a guy named Jack was running and somone suggested,

The guy seems smart with law -- but maybe too smart for politics.

I wonder exactly how dumb is good?
Kulongoski?

As for Kitzhaber, he talks like he's smart with politics but I've never viewed him as anything but as smart as the public employee told him to be.

Chris Dudley and his wife Chris are entirely honest, admirable and decent people raising their 3 kids who attend public school.

The smear machine will not work IMO and he'll win by 10 points.

The polls that I have seen show a greater percentage R turnout than D turnout is expected for the next election. If Dudley is elected I suspect it will be because Dems sat on their hands refusing to vote, rather than Oregonians giving their overwhelming support for the Dudley.

Chris Dudley seems to have been consistently making intelligent choices. This is completely allowable with the current tax laws. You seem to be railing against the candidate for employing strategies that anyone, in his situation, has the legal ability to do.

This, in my opinion, makes him a better candidate to govern than an individual who can get a loan than no other person in Oregon could receive, or whose girlfriend receives grants from the state in a flawed process.

One candidate seems like a fraud, the other just seems smart.

Not sure if the methodology passes a sniff test, but FYI:

http://www.thedailybeast.com/election-oracle/governor/oregon/91

Show me a man who is totally honest, and I'll show you a man who has never run for public office. By the time one gets elected, he or she owes their soul to some special interest group or person.

In my dealings with Nigel Jaquiss and the WWeek on the PGE Park soccer deal, it was obvious that they had either been paid off or scared off from reporting on the blatant and well-documented fraud involved in that project.

So, I no longer trust their motives or candor in covering any story.

Dudley's tax schemes may have been legal (although that's not clear now), but it is clear that he consistently tries to shirk his responsibility to pay taxes and be a constructive part of our social contract. Apparently he enjoys all of the benefits of other people paying taxes (public schools for his kids, roads, etc.), but he's not willing to do his part. It's definitely a disturbing pattern that shows he's more interested in helping himself than the general public and the greater good.

That being said, maybe he is perfectly fit for office in Oregon.

Personally I think if a guy has 8 years in office and fails miserably we should give him another shot. It's part of our social contract. Besides, Dudley probably takes his home mortgage interest deduction too. He wouldn't do that if he loves Oregon.

How is this not failure to report a gift of taxable income?

When Joe Sixer wants a teardown leveled he has to pay the contractor. But a sports star with a ginormous lot not only gets it done gratis, he takes a tax deduction for it!!

Dudley reminds me a lot of Reagan ... Made his pile in entertainment, got brought into politics by money men who knew that they were too ugly and repulsive to show their faces, so they found an amiable guy who would read his lines and do what hew was told. And we still haven't recovered from that substitution, wanting "Morning in America" (Oregon's Comeback") instead of flawed, but adult leadership.

I know you can get a tax deduction for allowing the fire dept to "practice" on your house and razing it thru fire - so it's not a Dudley-special thing.

I guess the question I'd have is whether $350K is a fair number. Was it habitable? The one person I know is getting a $100K deduction for a shack on a large piece of land, but who the heck knows with this state.

In my opinion the guy was doing what anyone with half a brain would do in the same situation. It's not like the government is a charity that you donate money to out of a sense of civic responsibility. People should pay what they owe and not a penny more. He obviously has a penchant for money management, and I respect a guy who takes advantage of optimizing the tax code to his full advantage. If the IRS didn't like the deduction then they could have challenged the return through an audit or in the tax court. If he was convicted for cheating or under-reporting or whatever then that would be a totally different story.

I can't really beleive what I'm reading here. A guy is being bashed for taking legal tax emeptions? How many of you deduct yourself? Your wife? Your kids? Your state income taxes from federal and vice versa? ETC?

If taking legal deductions is not paying your fair share in taxes then I expect you (as a complainer about Dudley's deductions) to not take any deductions at all because it's not your fair share of taxes.

Now yes, if he takes an illegal deduction (Kitzhaber deduction on his illegal mortgage that wasn't a mortgage) then I expect blowback legally and in the polls. Carping about someone legally taking deductions is just plain stupid and dishonest.

I don't know. I still have this small video clip (in a gif) play in my mind whenever I hear Chris Dudley's name:

Fascinating comments. Here you have a tax authority with a national reputation saying the candidate "pushed the envelope". The responses? 1. "No, he didn't" 2. "Look over here — reporter with a bias/past!!" 3. "Nobody's perfect." 4. "This isn't a bug — it's a feature."

Listen to Doc Golightly. This is a candidate who is short on integrity and social conscience. If we hand the office of governor over to someone who doesn't support the useful things government does and is willing to take public benefits without paying his share — as an overstated tax deduction and a questionable residence claim strongly imply — then I suppose we deserve what we get. It's not like we haven't had recent experience, at the federal level, along these lines. Moreover, this is not a candidate with his own ideas and vision of where the state should go. He's a stooge and a mouthpiece for those who cynically encourage voters to act against their own interests, and then help themselves to the spoils.

I just love how the Dudster's backers think that welfare for the rich is fine but howl about any other kind of welfare. Thing is that welfare for the rich only benefits the rich... and I doubt that Ben, Gary, toSteve, Jon, David E G, or Dave A. are anywhere near rich. They'd probably like to unrealistically believe they can become rich but if they'd been paying attention they'd realize there's less and less chance of that.

I am still in favor of a flat tax and fuggatabout deductions except basic ones. To whit, establish a poverty level. Deduct that poverty amount from everyone's earnings. Create a per household member (and don't use legal marriage to define who household members are since legal marriage is a discirminatory crock) deduction and apply those. And then flat tax. End of story

There are illegal tax evasion transactions and the there are legal tax avoidance transactions. These are often confused.

As Judge Learned Hand famously wrote:

"Anyone may arrange his affairs so that his taxes shall be as low as possible; he is not bound to choose that pattern which best pays the treasury. There is not even a patriotic duty to increase one's taxes. Over and over again the Courts have said that there is nothing sinister in so arranging affairs as to keep taxes as low as possible. Everyone does it, rich and poor alike and all do right, for nobody owes any public duty to pay more than the law demands."

Why do I suspect that those who criticize "the rich" for taking all available legal tax deductions also itemize their deductions to minimize how much they pay in taxes as well.

I am sure that Dudley did not use this tax strategy unless his CPA approved of it. In fact, the CPA may have suggested it. And if it is a legal deduction, what did Dudley do wrong? If you don't like a person, you will interpret his or her actions negatively. Seen through another lens, the same actions are agreeable. If I had Dudley's money and ability to use these deductions, I would have done the same thing. I pay all the taxes than I am required to pay - and hopefully not a cent more.

Reggie Bush returned his Heisman Trophy.

It's time Nigel Jaquiss returned his Pulitzer Prize.

(although still living part time in a Portland home)

Didn't the buyer of the home squash that story awhile back. Said the reporters intentionally misquoted him.

How come some stupid pastor in a place like Mississipi can't get famous by hawking the "International Burn the (ridiculously convoluted and time-wasting) US Taxcode Day"???

I bet we could increase tax revenues NO end by just radically simplifying the taxcode, along Lucadvo's lines. Then the government and people would all be immeasurably happier and the only losers would be the accountants and the IRS parasites.

Dudley says the IRS has not contacted him and he took the deduction based on his accountant’s advice.

“We looked into it to make sure the deduction was legitimate and got a conservative appraisal,” he says.

In December 2002, during the last of his 16 NBA seasons, then-Portland Trail Blazer Dudley bought a 1.81-acre property in Lake Oswego for $1.15 million. The property included a 4,900-square-foot home with four bedrooms, four bathrooms and a four-car garage.

Not familiar with LO real estate at that time, but $350K for a 4900 sq ft home doesn't seem out of line for this.

A little research --
Dudley purchased this property in 2002 for $1,115,000. the home was built in 1949 and was 4,174 square feet. Claiming a deduction of $350,000 prices out to $83/sf. I would have no problem justifying that price per square foot on a tax return.

In fact, I believe he understated the value of the improvements. According to my information the home had a four car garage, three woodburning fireplaces, hardwood floors, four bathrooms, full basketball court, etc.

Kitzhaber, who has been at the helm and was a huge disappointment (at best) is running again and being propped up by the current establishment that has already failed miserably.

As is typical in Oregon politics, the republican opponent is scrutinized down to the knats-ass and villified as being "short on integrity and social conscience" because he gerrymandered his tax liability -- as most folks do; they hire a CPA to find deductions -- but with Dudley this somehaow becomes a violation of the "social contract".

Unfortunately, focusing on this will only scare folks in to voting for the status quo -- after which nothing will change in Oregon, and we'll continue to sink to the bottom (except public employees of course).

I'd like WW to do a piece on how much Dudley has given to Oregon charities over the years. That'd be nice, but they'd probably spin it as something negative, like "well, it's only right that the greedy rich-guy republican gave something back". And they'll mention nothing of the social contract, of course.

In fact, I believe he understated the value of the improvements. According to my information the home had a four car garage, three woodburning fireplaces, hardwood floors, four bathrooms, full basketball court, etc.

And he burned it down to make room for something even more palatial. While I'm sure the LO firefighters got some helpful practice, it seems wasteful. Why not move it somewhere else and donate it to a family or nonprofit? Or have the Rebuilding Center salvage the reusable fixtures and old-growth timber? I'm sure both would have gotten him at least the same amount of tax deduction as well as some "green" cred, which, rightly or wrongly, scores points with the local electorate.

Kind of reminds me of this, and we all know how that ended.

http://www.taxhistory.org/thp/readings.nsf/artweb/f8723e3606cd79ec85256ff6006f82c3?opendocument

On October 10, 1973, one month after Nixon's tax audit press conference, Agnew pleaded guilty to one count of tax evasion. He resigned as vice president. (WSJ, Oct. 11, 1973.) Agnew was also fined $10,000 and put on probation, but he avoided both a jail sentence and further charges related to bribery and extortion.

In the months that followed the Agnew resignation, a more aggressive press began to demand more details about Nixon's taxes. The press revealed Nixon's 1970 return showed a presidential salary of $200,000, yet federal income tax was less than $1,000. The Wall Street Journal reported on December 10, 1973, that the Nixon tax returns from 1969 through 1972 had the following adjusted gross incomes and taxes:

Adjusted Gross Federal Income
Year Income Tax

1969 $328,161 $72,682
1970 $262,942 $792
1971 $262,384 $878
1972 $268,777 $4,298

The disparity between the income and tax figures was initially attributed to large deductions of interest on the loan to buy the San Clemente residence and to the charitable contribution of his vice- presidential papers. With a top federal income tax rate of 70 percent at the time, many were amazed how someone with such an enormous ability to pay tax could almost completely escape taxation. With the Watergate story unfolding, American confidence in government again was shaken. A Wall Street Journal editorial on November 13 spoke to the heart of the issue:


It does seem unseemly that the President of the United States should almost completely escape taxation. Since he is in some way supposed to set a national example, a case can be made that he ought to bend over backward to make sure his taxes are not too low.


The editorial then called for a strengthening of the minimum tax to close loopholes. The editorial concluded with:


There is a great deal to be said for it [the minimum tax] on the basis of simple equity. Considering what the average citizen pays, a President earning $200,000 should pay more than a few hundred dollars in tax. And so should anyone else earning $200,000.

I do whatever I legally can to make my taxes as low as they can possibly be.

I'm guessing 90% of you do likewise, regardless of your political affiliation.

I'm just not understanding the anger here. Dudley legally avoided tax liability, and the dems are getting all pissy about him betraying some sort of made up "social contract" that nobody but republicans are apparently supposed to be subject to.

C'mon, people.

Snards - I guess that means 90% of us are completely unfit for public office, notwithstanding any skills, talents, or interests we might contribute.

Leave public office for folks like Sam Adumbs, Kulongonski, etc. who were either (1) not smart enough to take advantage of a tax break or (2) intentionally and philanthropically overpaying their taxes. Hmmm, which one seems to fit around here?

The Fire Marshall noted at the time that Dudley wanted to demolish the building in order to build a new one.

That is strictly not allowed and is another example of illegal tax evasion by this would be politician. He has no business running for Governor.

I seem to recall a long list of Obama appointees who had tax problems. I am pretty sure some of them were of the "evasion" nature. I don't recall much blue outrage then.

The market value of a property slated to be burned is nowhere near $83/ft.

That's all. The only reasonable answer is that, in return for donating the practice to the fire department, he doesn't have to declare the avoided cost of leveling the place and hauling the scrap to the landfill as income. Claiming the standing value of a habitable home on your tax return as a deduction for a home that you got the government to burn for you is dishonest. If you don't see that, cry about Sam Adams all you want, but you reason just like he does: you decide the answer you want and go from there.

My understanding of ownership when the Fire Department is involved is that they "own" the property for the duration. So perhaps no deed would have had to be employed.

The point that every one is missing is that not everybody gets to conveniently have the fire dept. demo their house (legal or not) and then get to write-off the whole thing.

It's all about connections and the ability to hire a sleazy accountant.

That's not a Republican, Democrat issue- it's a class issue- take care of me first.

I don't like making counter arguments to Nigel's column on citing other examples of his new definition of "tax evasion". But Nigel could easily explore all the tax benefits by Homer Williams, Mark Edlen, Hoffman Construction, the Walsh brothers, the list goes on, in "giving" land, buildings, in-kind services with over inflated prices. It is rampant. Just get a favorable appraisal, have good tax and legal council and you're covered, even if the IRS comes knocking. And while Nigel is at it he could explore his own newspaper's tax deductions as business expenses.

I agree with the comments that most people take all kinds of deductions that in many cases are insidious. How many of us have given to Goodwill, or the like, and valued the article higher than how the IRS tax code strickly defines the value of donated articles? It is the same analogy that some are using in knocking Dudley's claim. And from what I know of Dudley's case the valuation of his replaced home is very modest.

I'm sure Dr. John Kitzhaber, MD, while not a multi-millionaire like Dudley, nonetheless had the wherewithal to hire envelope-pushing accountants and investment advisers unaffordable to the rest of us. He certainly had the pull to get questionable financing not available to the general public.

Which makes this back-and-forth "gotcha" game between the two campaigns entertaining but ultimately pointless and distracting. In the absence of blatant criminality -- which is for the prosecutors and courts and the IRS to determine -- all we're left with is choices made by the candidates based on professional or personal advice from people they trusted that in hindsight look sketchy or not fully thought out. And I'm sure a lot of us, too, have made personal and financial choices that would draw skeptical looks should they come to light in the heat of a gubernatorial campaign. Not that what they did should be ignored or excused, but in the absence of additional evidence establishing a firm pattern of malfeasance, I'm not sure either Dudley's tax dodges or Kitz's loan should be used as the sole measures of the men and their suitability (or lack thereof) to lead our state.

LucsAdvo: Actually I do OK. I'm surprised that my comment made you believe otherwise. There's lots of opportunity for those who want to work hard enough. Sure there are rich people. But remember, they don't live forever, and their kids will end up spending most of the money they accumulated. And a lot of that is going to happen in the next 20-30 years. So there will be a lot of new rich folks who worked and saved to get there.

I'm voting for Dudley but understand that he will have a tough time winning in this state. To me it's an idiot test. To others it's not. That's politics. The best things about Oregon will survive either way: weather, hunting, fishing, skiing, etc.. To have a nice life in this state, the best thing to do is to ignore all the politics and go have fun.

Didn't the buyer of the home squash that story

I don't think so. Dudley lived in the Portland house at least part of the time.

So perhaps no deed would have had to be employed.

Conveyances of real estate must be in writing, I believe.

WHAT exactly is his motive for running for govenor? An old Italian lady once told me, "Nobody knows what's at the bottom of the pot except the spoon that stirs it". I sure would like to be that spoon.

Shaq for Gov.

I'm not a RE attorney, but I believe there may be a difference between conveyance of LAND versus the transfer of something affixed to the land, such as a house and garage. Of course, we are all speculating that he "transferred" something tangible, rather than just letting the fire department burn down the house.

This whole discussion should fall in the "who cares" category. If the IRS gave him the deduction, more power to him

For all his talk about supporting schools, Dudley seems to have done a whole lot to avoid paying for them.

Two choices
Kitzhaber or
Dudley

Dudley should win by a large margin.

They are opposites.

Gary - There is a large difference between doing OK (hey I do OK too) and being really rich. I somehow doubt you could drop a million or plus on a property with a home, demolish it, and build something nicer.

Whether you get it or not opportunities are disappearing. I am the disowned progeny of noveau riche parents. I got a pretty good education before I got disowned.

There is no way someone with a liberal arts degree who graduated last June and gets no help from mommy and daddy and has no connections (I moved to the far coast as part of obtaining my freedom) is ever going to do as well as me. And I worked damned hard for several decades. But with corporations outsourcing and offshoring and fighting hard not to pay the rank and file (and I don't mean union) much so the execs can suck up extra, there isn't much chance to make it. Plus the economy is even more trashed than it was when I got here in 1977.

For some reason, I don't believe in inheritances. My sole sibling is a lazy, worthless punk with a huge entitlement attitude. Knowing you're on your own is a huge motivator. Inheritances should go to charities. But that's my personal take on that.

I am surprised that the "scandal bar" has been set so very low for Mr. Dudley; and so very high for Mr. Kitzhaber.

It's almost as if the people who control the papers want Dr. No to win the race.

OMG love the clip of DUD being Rag Dolled on the BBall court , that is the kind of guv you would get.Now if I was Kitz I would just run that over and over...
Dudley = GW Bush , a happy oaf w/out a clue.

All you commenters who are defending the Dud here, pay attention: there's a questionable (at best) claim of Washington residence, and a questionable (at best) valuation on a worthless house. These are possibly gray areas for ordinary people in private life, but not for those individuals who are asking for our vote and our trust. All you tax experts out there with your Holmes quotes and your convictions about tax compliance and IRS "allowing" a deduction should ask yourselves a few questions. For example, do you really think either one of these would have held up on audit? Our Blogmeister, at least, isn't so sure. Our tax law is based on self-reporting, and depends almost entirely (you can look up the statistics on the percentage of returns audited) on the good character of the taxpayer. This character? Not so good. Knowing these two things about his taxes, I wouldn't vote for him for dogcatcher. If we still had such a thing.

"on the good character of the taxpayer. This character? Not so good. Knowing these two things about his taxes, I wouldn't vote for him for dogcatcher. If we still had such a thing."
===

So character matters now, eh?

We can all remember Allan L. bashing Obama's mistake at the Sec of Treasury, right?

We can all remember Allan L. bashing Sam Adam's liar character right?

We can all remember Allan L. bashing Kitzhaber's lack of character regarding not reporting his conflict of interest loan with Bidwell, right? ...or his girl friends problems?

Or is Allan L. just a shill for Democrats?

Allan L

If a doctor prescribes some medication to a patient and the patient dies due to the doctors error, do you blame the patient or the doctor.

In both instances, Dudley acted on the advice of his accountant. If there are problems with what was done, why are you blaming Dudley.

BTW, not "Knowing these two things about his taxes, I wouldn't vote for him for dogcatcher" would you vote for him?

Allan L. Focus on Dudley's tax reporting all you want...

As a private-sector employer and democrat, I'm voting for Dudley. I don't see how Oregon is going to prosper, or even get back to where we were two years ago under Kitzhber.

Oh, Larry. You have no idea how I feel about those other things you raise which have no bearing on Dudley's character. But I understand your eagerness to change the subject.

Mpzip: good analogy! Worth thinking over carefully in this context. I recommend that you reflect, in your hypothetical, on who ends up dead.

Allan L

I will be the first to admit my example was a tad dramatic to say the least, but the point is still valid imho. You pay for what you assume is competent professional advice, you follow it, you shouldn't be blamed if it was wrong.

Allan L - Good points about the "questionable" transactions involving Dudley. What do you make of the "questionable" track record of Dr. K in office? What of his "questionable" attitude saying that this state is ungovernable after eight years of effort?

This isn't about electing a dogcatcher, it's about picking the dog with the least number of fleas. We already know what we are getting with Kitzhaber. If Dudley's greatest sin is taking advantage of the tax code and acting in self-interest to save his family some dough, so what? I want someone running this state who will be looking under every rock for a way to get the system to work for our benefit.

Alan L. I think you've stepped over the line here. I for one would vote for Dudley for dog catcher, especially if it was somewhere in Washington.

Ha, Oregon is not ever going to 'get back to where it was' 2 years ago, 10, or 50. Regardless Kitz, duh...Dudley, or otherwise.

People seem (to me) to be in such refusal to understand about the situation and the prospects going forward; (avoiding to say 'denial' -- denial is seeing reality and denying it's there or you saw it; refusal is eyes shut to deliberately not see reality).

Oregon's circumstances and governance is all and totally massively Federal dictated. Between where we are and 'getting back' to prosperity, somewhere between here and there we must and have to sever the Federal.

I think that is merely saying 'secession,' which is really no big deal and pretty much pro forma -- we convene an Oregon Consti2tional Convention, draft a secession document, and pass it with a statewide vote. And there can be the appropriate circumstance not by Oregon's initiative -- saying the Federal abandons us, first, by its collapse, and leaves 48 States each fending for themselves, at which turn of events we might have to decide between going it alone or 'buddy-system' with like-looking neighbor States.

That it looks like a Big Deal, looming up fearsome in the imagination, is what is stopping Oregon, it is the barrier, to 'getting back' and reclaiming our sovereign sensibility.

Mostly Kitzaber or duhDudley is irrelevant, except that the first has wits enough to comprehend radical developments and comprehend blazing a trail in uncharted territory, and the second is a pawn of shadow-hidden interests who mean to cause radical developments, not recover from them.

One can be sure that something is "afoot" when irony morphs into sarcasm.


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In Vino Veritas

Chloe, Pinot Grigio, Valdadige 2013
Edmunds St. John, Bone-Jolly Gamay Noir 2013
Kirkland, Pinot Grigio, Friuli 2013
St. Francis, Red Splash 2011
Rodney Strong, Canernet, Alexander Valley 2011
Erath, Pinot Blanc 2013
Taylor Fladgate, Porto 2007
Portuga, Rose 2013
Domaine Digioia-Royer, Chambolle-Musigny, Vielles Vignes Les Premieres 2008
Locations, F Red Blend
El Perro Verde, Rueda 2013
Chateau Ste. Michelle, Indian Wells Red 2
If You See Kay, Red 2011
Turnbull, Old Bull Red 2010
Cherry Tart, Cherry Pie Pinot Noir 2012
Trader Joe's Grand Reserve Cabernet, Oakville 2012
Benton Lane, Pinot Gris 2012
Campo Viejo, Rioja, Reserva 2008
Haden Fig, Pinot Noir 2012
Pendulum Red 2011
Vina Real, Plata, Crianza Rioja 2009
Edmunds St. John, Bone/Jolly, Gamay Noir Rose 2013
Bookwalter, Subplot No. 26
Ayna, Tempranillo 2011
Pete's Mountain, Pinot Noir, Haley's Block 2010
Apaltagua, Reserva Camenere 2012
Lugana, San Benedetto 2012
Argyle Brut 2007
Wildewood Pinot Gris 2012
Anciano, Tempranillo Reserva 2007
Santa Rita, Reserva Cabernet 2009
Casone, Toscana 2008
Fonseca Porto, Bin No. 27
Louis Jadot, Pouilly-Fuissé 2011
Trader Joe's, Grower's Reserve Pinot Noir 2012
Zenato, Lugana San Benedetto 2012
Vintjs, Cabernet 2010
14 Hands, Hot to Trot White 2012
Rainstorm, Oregon Pinot Gris 2012
Silver Palm, North Coast Cabernet 2011
Andrew Rich, Gewurtztraminer 2008
Rodney Strong, Charlotte's Home Sauvignon Blanc 2012
Canoe Ridge, Pinot Gris, Expedition 2012
Edmunds St. John, Bone-Jolly Gamay Noir Rose 2012
Dark Horse, Big Red Blend No. 01A
Elk Cove, Pinot Noir Rose 2012
Fletcher, Shiraz 2010
Picollo, Gavi 2011
Domaine Eugene Carrel, Jongieux 2012
Eyrie, Pinot Blanc 2010
Atticus, Pinot Noir 2010
Walter Scott, Pinot Noir, Holstein 2011
Shingleback, Cabernet, Davey Estate 2010
Coppola, Sofia Rose 2012
Joel Gott, 851 Cabernet 2010
Pol Roget Reserve Sparkling Wine
Mount Eden Chardonnay, Santa Cruz Mountains 2009
Rombauer Chardonnay, Napa Valley 2011
Beringer, Chardonnay, Napa Reserve 2011
Kim Crawford, Sauvignon Blanc 2011
Schloss Vollrads, Spaetlese Rheingau 2010
Belle Glos, Pinot Noir, Clark & Telephone 2010
WillaKenzie, Pinot Noir, Estate Cuvee 2010
Blackbird Vineyards, Arise, Red 2010
Chauteau de Beaucastel, Chateauneuf-du-Pape 2005
Northstar, Merlot 2008
Feather, Cabernet 2007
Silver Oak, Cabernet, Alexander Valley 2002
Silver Oak, Cabernet, Napa Valley 2002
Trader Joe's, Chardonnay, Grower's Reserve 2012
Silver Palm, Cabernet, North Coast 2010
Shingleback, Cabernet, Davey Estate 2010
E. Guigal, Cotes du Rhone 2009
Santa Margherita, Pinot Grigio 2011
Alamos, Cabernet 2011
Cousino Macul, Cabernet, Anitguas Reservas 2009
Dreaming Tree Cabernet 2010
1967, Toscana 2009
Charamba, Douro 2008
Horse Heaven Hills, Cabernet 2010
Lorelle, Horse Heaven Hills Pinot Grigio 2011
Avignonesi, Montepulciano 2004
Lorelle, Willamette Valley Pinot Noir 2011
Villa Antinori, Toscana 2007
Mercedes Eguren, Cabernet Sauvignon 2009
Lorelle, Columbia Valley Cabernet 2011
Purple Moon, Merlot 2011
Purple Moon, Chardonnnay 2011
Horse Heaven Hills, Cabernet 2010
Lorelle, Horse Heaven Hills Pinot Grigio 2011
Avignonesi, Montepulciano 2004
Lorelle, Willamette Valley Pinot Noir 2011
Villa Antinori, Toscana 2007
Mercedes Eguren, Cabernet Sauvignon 2009
Lorelle, Columbia Valley Cabernet 2011
Purple Moon, Merlot 2011
Purple Moon, Chardonnnay 2011
Abacela, Vintner's Blend No. 12
Opula Red Blend 2010
Liberte, Pinot Noir 2010
Chateau Ste. Michelle, Indian Wells Red Blend 2010
Woodbridge, Chardonnay 2011
King Estate, Pinot Noir 2011
Famille Perrin, Cotes du Rhone Villages 2010
Columbia Crest, Les Chevaux Red 2010
14 Hands, Hot to Trot White Blend

The Occasional Book

Phil Stanford - White House Call Girl
John Kaplan & Jon R. Waltz - The Trial of Jack Ruby
Kent Haruf - Eventide
David Halberstam - Summer of '49
Norman Mailer - The Naked and the Dead
Maria Dermoȗt - The Ten Thousand Things
William Faulkner - As I Lay Dying
Markus Zusak - The Book Thief
Christopher Buckley - Thank You for Smoking
William Shakespeare - Othello
Joseph Conrad - Heart of Darkness
Bill Bryson - A Short History of Nearly Everything
Cheryl Strayed - Tiny Beautiful Things
Sara Varon - Bake Sale
Stephen King - 11/22/63
Paul Goldstein - Errors and Omissions
Mark Twain - A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court
Steve Martin - Born Standing Up: A Comic's Life
Beverly Cleary - A Girl from Yamhill, a Memoir
Kent Haruf - Plainsong
Hope Larson - A Wrinkle in Time, the Graphic Novel
Rudyard Kipling - Kim
Peter Ames Carlin - Bruce
Fran Cannon Slayton - When the Whistle Blows
Neil Young - Waging Heavy Peace
Mark Bego - Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul (2012 ed.)
Jenny Lawson - Let's Pretend This Never Happened
J.D. Salinger - Franny and Zooey
Charles Dickens - A Christmas Carol
Timothy Egan - The Big Burn
Deborah Eisenberg - Transactions in a Foreign Currency
Kurt Vonnegut Jr. - Slaughterhouse Five
Kathryn Lance - Pandora's Genes
Cheryl Strayed - Wild
Fyodor Dostoyevsky - The Brothers Karamazov
Jack London - The House of Pride, and Other Tales of Hawaii
Jack Walker - The Extraordinary Rendition of Vincent Dellamaria
Colum McCann - Let the Great World Spin
Niccolò Machiavelli - The Prince
Harper Lee - To Kill a Mockingbird
Emma McLaughlin & Nicola Kraus - The Nanny Diaries
Brian Selznick - The Invention of Hugo Cabret
Sharon Creech - Walk Two Moons
Keith Richards - Life
F. Sionil Jose - Dusk
Natalie Babbitt - Tuck Everlasting
Justin Halpern - S#*t My Dad Says
Mark Herrmann - The Curmudgeon's Guide to Practicing Law
Barry Glassner - The Gospel of Food
Phil Stanford - The Peyton-Allan Files
Jesse Katz - The Opposite Field
Evelyn Waugh - Brideshead Revisited
J.K. Rowling - Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
David Sedaris - Holidays on Ice
Donald Miller - A Million Miles in a Thousand Years
Mitch Albom - Have a Little Faith
C.S. Lewis - The Magician's Nephew
F. Scott Fitzgerald - The Great Gatsby
William Shakespeare - A Midsummer Night's Dream
Ivan Doig - Bucking the Sun
Penda Diakité - I Lost My Tooth in Africa
Grace Lin - The Year of the Rat
Oscar Hijuelos - Mr. Ives' Christmas
Madeline L'Engle - A Wrinkle in Time
Steven Hart - The Last Three Miles
David Sedaris - Me Talk Pretty One Day
Karen Armstrong - The Spiral Staircase
Charles Larson - The Portland Murders
Adrian Wojnarowski - The Miracle of St. Anthony
William H. Colby - Long Goodbye
Steven D. Stark - Meet the Beatles
Phil Stanford - Portland Confidential
Rick Moody - Garden State
Jonathan Schwartz - All in Good Time
David Sedaris - Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim
Anthony Holden - Big Deal
Robert J. Spitzer - The Spirit of Leadership
James McManus - Positively Fifth Street
Jeff Noon - Vurt

Road Work

Miles run year to date: 328
At this date last year: 183
Total run in 2013: 257
In 2012: 129
In 2011: 113
In 2010: 125
In 2009: 67
In 2008: 28
In 2007: 113
In 2006: 100
In 2005: 149
In 2004: 204
In 2003: 269


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