Wednesday, August 23, 2017

The Death Of Ed Garvey

By Jeff Simpson

Ed Garvey, one of my heroes, all time good guys from Wisconsin and a true Gamechanger, passed away in early 2017.   Garvey, was what a true progressive should aspire to be.  He did not talk about change, he worked to actually change the political landscape.

One of the gifts that Mr. Garvey gave us was  Fighting Bob Fest.   Fighting Bob Fest, was a big top Progressive Chautauqua, that was the envy of Progressives all over the country.  It brought people such as Bernie Sanders, Greg Palast, Dave Zirin, Jim Hightower, Robert Kennedy Jr, Keith Ellison, etc.... to Baraboo,WI.  

One of the criticisms of FightingBobfest was that it was preaching to the choir.  However, as we have found out, Progressives becoming a rarity in WI, we needed one day of choir practice since we have 364 days of the exact opposite.  

The 2016, FightingBobfest ended its run.   It moved from Baraboo to Madison and now it goes into the dust bin of history.  

There will apparently be a night at the Barrymore, which used to be the "kickoff" for BobFest, but with no Bobfest to "kickoff" not sure what the point is.    Not only that, it is scheduled for September 10th and there is zero information available regarding the event available anywhere.  A quick look at the FightingBob Facebook page and all you see is a months old post by The Progressive Magazine asking for money.  

Since Hillary and her team blew it in Wisconsin and allowed the Donald to become President and RoJo to beat Senator Feingold, among many other losses, let us take a look at the Democratic/liberal/progressive scorecard n WI.  

*  Progressive Talk, The Mic 92.1, ended their run of political talk, despite good ratings, and went to a classic rock station(which I hope none of my readers will ever listen too).  

*  Sly was removed from his afternoon Progressive talk show and just allowed to play music on his family of radio stations.

*  The Progressive magazine, has went from a monthly magazine to a bimonthly magazine.

*  Wisdems leadership did not change and neither did anything in Wisconsin Democratic party.

*  The Wisdems communications director left and no one knew(think about that).  

*  The Democratic Minority leader of the Assembly, voted YES to give FoxConn $3 Billion taxpayer dollars to maybe create a few thousand jobs.  Was quickly congratulated by Scott Walker.

*   Senator Dave Hansen life was threatened,  Rep. Joel Kleefisch hung out with an anti-government hate group and there was a huge white supremacist march, which was handled poorly by pretty much every GOP rep(but Jim Steineke) and not a peep from the party.

*  Paul Ryan feels comfortable enough to go on live TV and talk about how great a job The Donald is doing.

*  FightingBob Fest has been shut down.  

* The one Progressive media outlet in the State, The Capital Times, used to associate with BobFest, but now has decided to start its own "fest" called ideasfest where they invite people from "all sides" to share ideas, or as they bill it - a new way to reach a better state. 

Under the leadership of managing editor Chris Murphy, these talks have posed what we believe are timely questions: “How many new apartments does Madison need?” was one well-attended example last year. We convened a panel of experts that drew almost 300 spectators to the High Noon Saloon, one of our frequent venues. Topics have varied but the turnouts, even on bad-weather weeknights, have been impressive — often 200 people or more.
This new Idea Fest takes that concept — that people appreciate well-crafted experiences that both educate and entertain — and builds something much bigger. While the inaugural fest coincides with the 100th anniversary of the Cap Times, it will be an annual event and not a one-time celebration.
The people sharing their "ideas" are such noted thinkers as Charley Sykes and Ron Johnson.  I look forward to hearing about the dangers of sunspots and why we should all call Michelle Obama - Mooch.   Those are some brilliant "ideas".  

Might I recommend they also invite Wild Bill Kramer to give us ideas on how to treat women and Scott Walker to tell us how to arrest people who sing songs you do not like.   The ideas that some in this state can share with us are endless.  

(Edit note: The venue for this "ideas fest" will be the UW-Madison campus.  I wonder if Robin Vos and Jesse Kremer needed to sign off on all speakers and topics).  

I guess when you have a director, Brady Williamson, who also represents WMC, then you should expect that the Progressive tradition of the Cap Times would be watered down.  

Not much momentum heading into the incredibly important election of 2018 in Wisconsin for team blue(and rumors of internal dissension within the party - more on that coming)!  

There is a zero sense of urgency, heading into a Gubernatorial election season, where historically the GOP should be extremely vulnerable.   At least I should say, that with rare exceptions, there seems to be no sense of urgency, because it seems like the WISDEMS have been on vacation this year.  

We also have another problem to overcome. primaries.   There are going to be many people jumping in the race to face Scooter, the guy who thinks walling off Canada is a good idea.   There is also a very contested race between Randy Bryce and Cathy Meyers to take on Paul Ryan already and a three way race for Supreme Court.  

All of these races have been ugly already and we are only getting warmed up.   Some people who I respect tremendously, who played neutral in the last presidential race, have been saying nasty things and spewing too much venom at candidates that they do not support,.  

So with all of the complete suppression of Progressive values, Ed Garvey is truly dead to us in WI!  

One of my favorite sayings of Ed's was "Is this a private fight, or can anyone join in?".  

It is time that we honor Ed Garvey again and start to take back our State.  Just like then, we need to take back the Democratic Party and then the State!  We need to do it IMMEDIATELY!

How do we do that at this point in our History?  It is simple, the same thing any athlete does when they fall into a bad slump - Go back to the basics!

In 2005 Ed Garvey came up with the idea of a "People's Legislature".   After meetings all over the state(imagine that reaching people in Madison AND Cable, WI).  The PL came up with four basic principles:

A four-part reform agenda was approved by participants at the assemblies, including:
  • Comprehensive campaign finance reform that includes public financing of state elections campaigns and full disclosure of political contributions that restores the state’s ban on corporate campaign contributions;
  • Independent ethics enforcement by combining the state Elections Board and Ethics Board into a single enforcement agency under the direction of a politically independent board;
  • Competitive elections through reform of legislative redistricting modeled after the system used in Iowa, and;
  • Preservation of local fiscal control to prevent arbitrary and centralized budget limits on local units of government.
It is hard to believe that we need to work around our legislators, to come up with these four basic ideas for a platform.   That we have to push the Democratic Party to support these basic fundamentals, but we do.

Let's honor the memory of Ed Garvey and DEMAND that these basic principles are not just part of the platform of any candidate asking for our support but that they also make them part of their stump speech!  

We have to also respect EVERYONE that runs for office, even if you do not support them.   The way we attack people who are not part of the Democratic Party establishment is beyond the pale and needs to stop.  

We also have to welcome ALL people into the Dem party and stop putting a premium on the people who pay $20.   We need every vote we can muster in November 2018 and if it means someone has to give up some of their power so be it.  

Finally, let's also remember another saying of Ed's(which we have strayed far  away from, even having lobbyists run major campaigns):  

"Bring your brooms so we can sweep the lobbyists out of the Capitol" 


Ed Garvey showed us the way to a better state....let us honor his memory and actually bring real change to Wisconsin!









Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Lyin' Ryan: Profile In Cowardice


In a media event that was comically called a "town hall," Lyin' Paul Ryan had this to say about Trump's comments regarding Charlottesville:

"I think he messed up on Tuesday. so, let me say it this way, it is very, very important that we not make this a partisan food fight. it is very important that we unify in condemning this kind of violence, in condemning this kind of hatred. and to make this us against them, republicans against democrats, pro-trump, anti-trump, that is a big mistake for our country and that will demean the value of this important issue."

What a crock!

This isn't an us vs them issue. This isn't Democrat vs Republican issue. This isn't a pro-Trump vs anti-Trump issue. Hell, this isn't even a white vs black issue.

This is a love vs hate issue. This is a right vs. wrong issue. This is a good vs evil issue.

When those polo-wearing, tiki torch-bearing Nazis and Klansmen terrorized Charlottesville, they were wrong. They were hateful. They were evil.

The fact that Trump said that Nazis are good people isn't messing up. He was sympathizing with the Nazis. He was wrong. He was evil.

By refusing to condemn the statements, by refusing to censure Trump for being a Nazi sympathizer, Ryan is tacitly condoning it.

The really sad part is that Ryan's milquetoast comments from Monday is his strongest yet. Earlier in that day, he couldn't even bring himself to mention Trump at all.

Looking at Ryan's track record, it's not hard to see that Ryan secretly agrees with that philosophy. Ryan's problem with Trump isn't what he said, it's just that he was so blatant and open about it. Yet, they share the same agenda.

It also shows that as much as Trump needs to be held accountable for his actions and words, so does Ryan.

Since Ryan won't be an adult about it, it is up to us to hold him accountable. It is up to us to stand up against this evil, malignant force.

The best way to do this is to repeal and replace Ryan in next year's election. And the best way to do that is to support Randy Bryce, who knows what is right and what is wrong and isn't afraid to stand up to evil.

You can support Randy by donating to his campaign today, whatever you can afford. It's not about supporting a Democrat over Republican. It's about vanquishing the evil and hate that people like Ryan have been cultivating for decades.

Monday, August 21, 2017

Governor Walker’s Foxconn Scheme Doesn’t Add Up

By Chris Taylor


MADISON – Tomorrow, the Joint Committee on Finance is scheduled to hold a public hearing in Southeast Wisconsin on Governor Walker’s Foxconn legislation, Special Session Assembly Bill 1.  This bill passed the State Assembly last week, and authorizes up to $2.85 billion payments to Foxconn, a Taiwanese electronics manufacturer, for building a manufacturing plant, creating jobs, discounted electricity rates, exemptions from the sales and use tax, and an exemption from significant environmental regulations.

Since the initial public hearing over two weeks ago, where no Foxconn representatives testified, there have been significant new disclosures about this proposal that further raise alarms:

·         Under the best case scenario, it would take 25 years for Wisconsinites to recoup the billions of potential payments to Foxconn;
·         An original analysis by Baker Tilly, paid for by Governor Walker’s jobs creation agency and not made available to the public, estimates that only 4,784 Wisconsin jobs will be created in the manufacturing plant, as opposed to the unverified 13,000 employees Foxconn reports;
·         That hourly employees, consisting the vast percentage of potential employees, are expected to work 20% overtime;
·         Buried in the bill is a provision that allows Foxconn to dump pollution in Wisconsin streams.
  
“With each day that goes by, the more concerned and frankly, outraged, I am over this “deal” being peddled by Governor Walker and legislative Republicans.  They are committing nearly $3 billion in taxpayer cash to a foreign corporation based on its rosy and unverified representations about job creation when they don’t even have to hire Wisconsin workers.
  
“Summer is coming to an end and it’s time Governor Walker takes off his rose-colored glasses and seriously scrutinizes Foxconn’s representations that seem more fiction than fact.  If JFC is doing a roadshow on this scheme, they should travel to parts of the state outside of the southeast to hear from Wisconsinites who will also be required to foot this bill with a staggering price tag.


“Even the nonpartisan Politifact agreed that it is entirely possible that Wisconsin could end up spending nearly $1 million per job that Foxconn creates.  That’s not economic development.  That’s not free market economics.  That’s extortion.  Instead of dumping billions of Wisconsinites’ cash into the pockets of a billion dollar, multinational Taiwanese company, we should be investing in our homegrown Wisconsin companies, our public school system, and our local roads.  That’s something we all can get behind.”

Lyin' Ryan To Finally Almost Hold A Town Hall



One of the talking points that Randy Bryce has been hitting Lyin' Paul Ryan hard with is the fact that Paul Ryan shows a great disdain for his constituents. Bryce said that it's been more than 600 days since Ryan held his last public town hall meeting.

Politifact checked out this claim and found that Bryce was in error. It's been over 650 days since Ryan held a town hall meeting. Given that that article came out a month ago, it means that Ryan is closing in on the two year mark of refusing to meet with the people of his district.

Ryan doesn't understand what the big deal is, though. He's been regularly meeting with the people he represents - the Kochs, the Bradley Foundation, Sheldon Adelson, lobbyists bearing $350 bottles of wine. Y'know, the people that really matter.

Apparently, Ryan's indifference to the people has been hurting him in the polls because he's been busy trying to placate the people without actually holding a town hall. Instead, he's been having phone conferences and "safe" town halls at very controlled sites.

.Yet, Ryan is still worried that this wasn't enough for the great unwashed masses, so tonight, he's almost going to hold his first town hall in nearly two years.

The keyword is almost.

The town hall meeting, if you can call it that, is being hosted by Jack Tapper and CNN.

And it's less of a town hall meeting as it is a reality TV show. CNN is carefully screening people by having them fill out a questionnaire first, asking for things like your occupation and what political party you're a part of. They also want to prescreen the questions that the applicant wants to ask.

Apparently, if you're a Democrat and/or want to ask a challenging question, you don't make the cut. I know of far more people not being allowed to go to this so-called town hall than those permitted into his Liarship's presence. And the number of progressives going so far appears to be able to counted on two hands with some fingers left over.

One of those not being allowed in is Bryce. To make up for this denial to address his US representative, he plans on being heard via an ad during this reality show. That alone should make this debacle worth watching.

Many of the other citizens of that district that are continued to be denied access to their representative are planning on making themselves heard in person, from the outside of the building.

Undoubtedly, Ryan will dismiss these people as "professional protesters bused in from out of state," as he usually does. It's much easier than to face the people or take accountability for his actions.

Solidarity Fish Fry - The Stache Edition

Friday night fish fries are a Wisconsin tradition. Lyin' Paul Ryan getting reelected feels like another tradition - a really unfortunate tradition.

But traditions are made to be broken.

So, Saturday night, State Representative Christine Sinicki and yours truly took great pride in hosting the first ever Saturday night fish fry and the first ever #StachSolidarityFishFry.  We hosted this event in order to raise funds who is going to break that most miserable tradition of Ryan getting reelected.

It was a grand event with good food and even better camaraderie. And thanks to Christine, everyone got a special surprise which made the event all the more fun.

Without further ado, here are some pictures from the event.

First, here's Randy addressing the crowd:




And here are some pictures of the attendees showing their support for Randy in a very fun and nontraditional way, thanks to Christine's surprise:








This couple, John and Annie, had their first date at the original Solidarity Fish Fry.  Their love is still going strong.  Randy is not only a hard worker, a champion  of the people, but also moonlights as Cupid:


Your hosts:


Randy's son:


The best picture of the night:


Group photo!


Lastly, in case anyone thought I was kidding about Randy's fondness of tartar sauce...


If you missed this one, don't feel bad.  We're already talking about having another one later on.

Of course, I'll keep you, gentle fish eater, informed.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Republican Thugs - Comment Section - Green Bay

By Jeff Simpson 

Senator Dave Hansen, a longtime Democratic Senator and public Servant from Green Bay, recently wrote up an op-ed for the Green Bay Press Gazette giving his opinion of the Foxconn debacle.

Recent reports suggest that 47% of all jobs in the U.S. could be lost to automation in the next 20 years. Those jobs range from manufacturing to retail to the legal and medical fields and beyond. According to a CBS report, even Wall Street is expected to replace nearly 230,000 jobs in the next 8 years with machines.Whether or not these new technologies lead to new jobs that provide better pay and benefits or to large-scale unemployment, one thing is certain: this change is coming rapidly and we’re not prepared to deal with its impact.Regardless of where you stand on the Foxconn deal, their stated goal of full automation is not unique to the world we are now living in. It is time for the Legislature to take the issue of automation seriously and do what needs to be done to protect the best interests of taxpayers, our families and our workforce.

The very first comment, in the era of divide and conquer:


Of course, came from a local Republican, and it was full of the same spit and vigor and hate that we have come to expect from the supporters of Fitzwalkerstan and fellow Trumpets:



In case there was any doubt....

Jeffrey BrowningDave Hansen is a disgusting human being. Isn't he the moron that murdered his own granddaughter? He is nothing but a puppet of the unions. He came right out and said he only works for his union constituents. I wish someone would run this idiot over.LikeReplyAug 18, 2017 11:46amEdited


Gotta love the "adults" on the right   Who is this brilliant linguist? 


 Heartland Business Systems? 

The same Heartland Business systems that has contracts with UW=Oshkosh, Racine and Eau Claire school districts among others?

The same Heartland Business Systems that has complete access to emails and all computer systems of their customers.  I wonder if their customers are comfortable knowing this person, so full of hate, has access to everything they think is private.

Kind of makes one wonder if the employees of HBS customers, many are liberal ( see Scott Walker video above) and how long until they get punished for a website they may, or may not have, visited and it was leaked to a hate site like Media Trackers or Right Wisconsin?  

A little food for thought for those of you who are vulnerable.

If you so choose, Here is contact information for Heartland Business systems to voice your displeasure that this person, who wishes a sitting WI Senator dead,  has access to your personal and personnel files.

Northeast Wisconsin Office / Company Headquarters
1700 Stephen Street
Little Chute, Wisconsin 54140
Phone: 800.236.7914
Fax: 920.788.7739

@HBSTech

1700 Stephen Street
Little Chute, Wisconsin 54140

United States
Phone920-788-7720
Fax920-788-7739

Trustee Hendricks to Beloit College Students Of Color - Go Away!

By Jeff Simpson



We have covered Diane Hendricks numerous times here at CogDis.  She is the widow of Ken Hendricks of ABC Supply company in Beloit and one of the richest women in the world.  Ms. Hendricks is also a Trustee at Beloit College and also one of the top GOP funders in Wisconsin,.  Ms. Hendricks was also VP of the Trump victory fund.  

I was adamant that having Ms, Hendricks serve on both, was incredibly bad for Beloit College's reputation around the world.

Diane Hendricks recently added another title to her resume - Nazi Sympathizer!


Last weekend, in Charlottesville, VA, an empowered far right wing full of Nazis, and white supremacists, grabbed their tiki torches and marched on the city screaming hate!    

While it turned the stomachs of most sane Americans, and many business people and community leaders started distancing themselves from these sickening events.  

However it was pretty much widely accepted that the completely failed the humanity test, was elected Republicans.   From The Donald on down, no leaders stepped up in the Republican party to say - hey that is not who we are or what we want to be!    Most just ran from the questions.

With the outrage and disgust, still white hot among the country, The Donald tried to do damage control.   No not the kind where he truly denounced this hate, but the kind where he made sure the billionaires would still hand him unlimited money.    

Among this select group of far far right billionaires was Beloit, Wisconsin's own Diane Hendricks.   Ms. Hendricks let The Donald know that no amount of Nazi's and white supremacists would stop her from donating to the cause.  

Of course we know the cause being, less taxes and regulations for billionaires and no chance of the working class to ever organize of stand up for themselves.

All for me, none for thee!

Ms. Hendricks, who lives in a city with approximately 25% people of color, let it be known that she sympathizes with the white power marchers!  

This is what she told The Donald was OK!  They might as well be giving free reign to David Duke.  

On August 21st, Beloit College welcomes its newest freshman class to town.   Maybe this is the video that their most famous Trustee might as well have helped produce this video:


Welcome to Beloit my white friends, the rest of you watch your step.  

It is sad what has happened to America, it is even sadder to me that my College overlooks hate for the almighty dollar!  

If you want to voice your displeasure that a Trustee of Beloit College is a Nazi sympathizer, here is the contact info:

Office of Development and Alumni Relations
Beloit College
700 College Street
Beloit, WI 53511
Toll-free Phone: 800-331-4943
Local Phone: 608-363-2656
FAX: 608-363-2459
Alumni: alumni@beloit.edu
Donors: gift@beloit.edu
Planned Giving: legacy@beloit.edu
@Beloit_College


Friday, August 18, 2017

Foxconn Cheat Sheet

By Gordon Hintz



Claim: Foxconn will invest $10 billion in constructing a new plant in Wisconsin

·         Foxconn has not invested $10 billion over the last five years on all of its factories combined.

·         The more Foxconn spends on infrastructure, the less likely it will be adding actual human jobs as the significant infrastructure spending would be for automation. Foxconn has rapidly moved towards automation in recent years replacing 60,000 workers in 2016 with robots.

·         In the past year, Foxconn has pledged investments of $5 billion investment in India; $3.65 billion in Kunshan, China and $8.8 billion in Guangzhou, China. Including the pledge of $10 billion in Wisconsin, Foxconn has pledged $27.5 billion in this year alone. This would be more than they have spent over the past 23 years.


Claim: Foxconn will create 13,000 jobs

·         Foxconn Chairman Terry Gou made no reference to the number of jobs the facility would create.

·         And in a news release, Foxconn was notably more measured than Governor Walker was, using the word "potential" in saying the plant would "create 3,000 jobs with the potential to grow to 13,000 new jobs."

·         President Trump used the same word, saying 3,000 jobs would be created "at a minimum, with the potential for up to 13,000 jobs in the very near future."

·         The company has said the plant would employ 3,000 workers at the beginning but the state's agreement in principle with Foxconn has no minimum jobs requirement.

·         If Foxconn spends $10 billion, the only way to make it economically viable is to keep the numbers of workers low and lean on automation to enhance productivity. If the LCD factory happens, it will be either labor intensive or highly automated. It will not be both.


Claim: Foxconn jobs will pay an average $53,900 a year

·         Foxconn has told the state that plant salaries would start at $41,600.


·         Of the 13,000 “potential” jobs, 75% of the jobs would be hourly operators and techs, presumably starting at $41,600, which would make the median wage at Foxconn $41,600.

·         However, any job paying $30,000 or more would qualify for the state incentives. A $30,000 job at Foxconn would mean that given the state 17% subsidy, Foxconn would be paying a little more than $12 per hour.


Claim: Foxconn has to create jobs to get the cash payments

·         Under the Foxconn bill, the company could get up to $1.35 billion in cash for making the full investment in the plant and robots — even if the market changes and the company is forced to abandon the plant.


Claim: It will take 25 years to recoup state taxpayer investment

·         According to the LFB, under the best case scenario, it would take 25 years to recoup the $2.85 million of taxpayer investment assuming:

o   The company invests $10 billion.

o   10,200 construction workers and suppliers earning an average of $59,600 per year during the four year construction period (2018-2021).

o   13,000 direct jobs at an average of $53,875 per year are in place and filled by calendar year 2021. This includes 1,040 jobs in place and filled by June of 2017.

o   22,000 indirect jobs averaging $51,000 per year are in place and filled by calendar year 2021.

o   If Foxconn falls short of job targets but still invests $10 billion (think robots) the pay back date could be closer to 2075.


Claim: Wisconsin will develop a supply chain for the LCD panels produced at Foxconn


·         Creating an entire supply chain requires the kind of low-skill assembly line jobs that Apple now offshores to countries like China for compensation well below minimum pay in the U.S.


·         As a result, it is unclear whether the company will even source its LCD panels from the Wisconsin factory. There are hundreds of parts that go into LCD panel production. It is unrealistic to have a supply chain by definition in the United States in 2017 and beyond.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Peter Barca Must Resign!

By Jeff Simpson 



The Wisconsin Assembly today voted to give Foxconn, the Taiwanese Company that made a $148 Billion in profits last year, $3 billion dollars in Wisconsin taxpayer dollars to maybe come here and build a factory.   



Lawmakers passed the legislation authored by Gov. Scott Walker 59-30, after the chamber’s Republicans cheered it as a smart bet for taxpayers with massive upside for the state’s economy and over Democrats’ criticism that the deal is a gigantic gamble with state funds.
The legislation drew “no” votes from two Republicans and “yes” votes from Democrats who represent southeastern Wisconsin where Foxconn wants to build — including Rep. Cory Mason, who is running for mayor of Racine.(edit note:  Peter Barca and Tod Ohnstead also voted  yes). 
 Yes Tod Ohnstead voted for it because its in his backyard so while we all lose he will recoup some of the dollars maybe.   Cory Mason voted for it because he is too scared to go into the race for Mayor, allowing them to use it against him.  Cory Mason is in this fight for Cory Mason, the rest of us are collateral damage for Mason's career ambitions.    

Neither of these votes are remotely surprising.    However the one we need to address is Peter Barca's. 

Peter Barca is the minority "leader" of the Assembly.   Here at CogDis we have called for Mr. Barca to step down from this position and just continue on in his safely gerrymandered seat.

Tonight, Peter Barca showed that he had zero interest in leading the Democrats and with maybe the biggest and most important election in our lifetime in 2018, it is imperative to the future of Wisconsin that Peter Barca give up his leadership role within the party!

Lets take a look a Barca's night.   


  Aug 15
MoreDems offered several changes to Foxconn bill to make it better 4 taxpayers, workers & the environment. None passed.
Ok Mr. Barca recognizes its a bad bill, and tries to make it acceptable to no avail.   

Barca isn't done:

  3 hours ago3 hours agoMore


Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, R-Rochester, told reporters that Assembly Republicans did everything possible to win Democrats’ support for the measure, but Assembly Minority Leader Peter Barca, D-Kenosha, disputed that — saying he “never got that call” to work with Republicans on the package.
Barca proposed moving the bill to a committee tasked with approving financial measures and writing the state’s budget, but Republicans rejected the motion.
Barca, who represents the area in which Foxconn is eyeing to build, argued that “we can come back on a better, stronger deal for the taxpayers, the workers, the small businesses and will protect the environment.”
 Now that is leadership.  Representative Barca was at the forefront of pointing out exactly what was wrong with the bill, working to make it at least semi acceptable and one where the taxpayers do not lose in the end.

Unfortunately,  Barca was not successful in improving or slowing down the bill, so what does he do?
                        


Even so, Barca ended up supporting the bill.



Barca, called it absurd, was lied to(and used as a prop) by Speaker Vos and knows that the environment is in danger with Foxconn and proudly voted YES!     

How do you, as leader of the Democratic party in the Assembly, vote against almost every other member of your caucus?   How do you give cover to Scott Walker and the Assembly Republicans by going along with a taxpayer funded welfare bill to a multi billionaire just to have something to run on in the next election?

We have a Governor who has a long record of economic disasters, who negotiated a deal with a company, that is best known for having suicide nets to keep their workers from killing themselves.   Now after cutting almost $3 billion dollars from our K-Grad public education system, we are handing the same amount over to a company that has a history of taking money and broken promises.    Yet the Democratic troops voted no and their "leader" voted yes.

How can anyone who is an elected Democrat, Democratic party member, donor or volunteer, how can you look at Peter Barca with respect as a leader?  When the Democrats all over the state campaign on the fact that Foxconn has not lived up to any promises yet, the Party of Walker can point out that the Leader of the Democrats voted yes also!    


The only possible way that the Democrats can head into 2018 with a chance to win is to actually head into 2018 with a leader.

Peter Barca must resign his leadership role immediately!

My Recommendations for new Assembly Minority Leader:


1.  Representative Jonathan Brostoff 

2.  Representative Chris Taylor 
3.  Representative Katrina Shankland 
4.  Representative Jimmy Anderson!

Make one of these four the new leader of the Democrats in the Assembly and we will win many seats in 2018!    


Continue on the same course and we will continue getting the same results!

Let Mr. Barca know its time to pass on the leadership of the party!

       Room 201 West                            Capitol Office: (608) 266-5504                      
         State Capitol                                   Toll Free: (888) 534-0064
         P.O. Box 8952
      Madison, WI 53708
   
                 Fax                                                        Email
        (608) 282-3664                          Rep.Barca@legis.wisconsin.gov

Twitter  - @peterwbarca

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Where Will Wisconsin Find the Workers?

By Gordon Hintz



The shiny object in front of lawmakers’ eyes when talking about the Foxconn proposal is the potential of new jobs.  “13,000 direct jobs!  Another 22,000 indirect jobs!” 

All of these claims ignore the reality in 2017 Wisconsin faces. If the jobs do materialize, where will the workers come from? 

The important statistic when considering the availability of labor is the “prime working age” population, which economists classify as people between 25 and 54 years old. Wisconsin had 105,000 fewer prime working age people in 2015 than it did in 2010. Some of the sharpest decreases occurred in Jefferson, Kenosha, Ozaukee, Racine, Walworth, Washington and Waukesha counties. As the state with the 15th oldest population in the U.S., Wisconsin’s prime working age population is expected to continue to shrink through 2040 to just 33% of its total population.  This is down from 41% in 2010. 

Looking at 2016 census estimates for Racine and Kenosha counties, Racine lost 6,709 (8.3%) of its prime working age population in just the past 6 years. Kenosha lost 2,998 (4.3%) since 2010.  So the very region being counted on to fill as many as 35,000 jobs has a smaller number of working aged people, and that number is continuing to decrease. 

Wisconsin’s current and future demographic challenge is not new, but considerations for how the state will address this challenge and manage the consequences do not seem to be at the forefront of the Governor’s current decision-making. 

In addition to the lost workforce due to the retirements of baby boomers, more than 27,000 people left Wisconsin between 2010 and 2014, according to a study from the Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance (WISTAX). According to Todd Berry, WISTAX president, Wisconsin lost people “at a faster rate than we should, and this means not only are we not going to grow the workforce, we’re going to see a shrinking workforce if we keep that up.” 

If you build it, will they come? 

Wisconsin is not alone in facing a labor shortage. Both Illinois and Michigan face shrinking working age populations, while Minnesota and Iowa expect small increases through 2040.  Nationwide, there are more than 1 million unfilled manufacturing jobs and there is high demand for skilled labor. 

Workers choose where they want to work.  Advocates for Foxconn have referenced both Silicon Valley and North Dakota’s oil boom as examples for Wisconsin’s hopes.  However, Silicon Valley succeeded primarily because of the open immigration policies of the U.S. and the importance the world’s best and brightest immigrants have played in the tech business. Wisconsin share of foreign-born Wisconsin residents stood at 4.8% in 2015, well below the U.S. percentage of 13.5% for the same year. And the average wage during the oil boom in 2012 in North Dakota for oil field workers was $112,462, while entry level rig workers averaged about $66,000 a year, according to Rigzone, an industry information provider and job website. 

It remains unclear what the actual job range will be or what the specific pay for those jobs at Foxconn will be beyond the unverified average annual pay of $53,000.  With a significant labor shortage in Wisconsin and neighboring states, will that level of compensation be enough to recruit as many as 13,000 people (not to mention 22,000 more) from around the U.S. to move to southeastern Wisconsin as our existing working age resident population declines? It seems unlikely.  The need to increase compensation will drive up labor costs and result in a larger and faster push to automate the Foxconn plant. The result? Far fewer jobs, and a much higher cost to the taxpayer. Lawmakers should not let the shine blind this reality.


Rep. Gordon Hintz (D-Oshkosh) represents the 54th District in the Wisconsin State Assembly and is a member of the Legislature’s budget-writing Joint Committee on Finance.



Tuesday, August 15, 2017

White Wisconsin - Now Even Whiter!

By Jeff Simpson



In Charlottsville, VA, there was a huge rally of white supremacists, Nazis, and random Republicans who showed up with tiki torches to fight mosquitoes and the taking down of a statue of the Confederate traitor General Robert E Lee.

In Lexington, KY, the mayor said that after the tragedy in VA, all Confederate statues would be coming down.

In North Carolina, protesters pulled down a statue of a Confederate Soldier.

Seeing a pattern here?

Finally, Americans are waking up to the fact that the Civil War was not nostalgic, but a huge black eye on our History.  The Civil War was a few states were AntiAmerican traitors who attacked America from within.   in the four years of the Civil War, 620,000 Americans were killed.  All so some rich white people would be allowed to keep slaves and get free labor.  

However, unsurprisingly, RightWisconsin, now run by Jamie Wigderson, looks at the Confederate Statues coming down as an opportunity to rid our history of Progressives.

It’s time for the statue of Robert La Follette at the National Statuary Hall Collection in the U.S. Capitol to come down. While we’re at it, let’s remove the bust of La Follette from the Capitol in Madison as well. There will be protests. But let’s face it, the Progressive Era is over. Thank God.
Wisconsin is now a red state, won fairly by former Governor Tommy Thompson (three times), Governor Scott Walker (three times) and President Donald Trump*. We re-elected a conservative senator in a presidential year, Ron Johnson, when every pundit said it couldn’t be done. The majority of our representation to Congress is conservative. Conservatives control the state Assembly and the state Senate with record numbers, and conservatives even control the state Supreme Court 5-2.
* I guess the self proclaimed "never Trumper" is now "all Trump all the time".

Most people see that it is time we stop fantasizing the Confederacy and realize it is a racist, black mark  and tragic time in America and stop honoring the traitors of the South.

Not Right Wisconsin, they feel since some "snowflakes" want some statues removed, that now would be a good time to rid ourselves of Wisconsin's Progressive past.

Since this is a borderline racist column, full of dog whistles, it is only fitting that they recommend that Judge William Rehnquisr and Tommy Thompson be the statues that we replace Fighting Bob with.

Rehnquist's legacy is one of suppressing African American and Latino voters, so of course he would be a favorite of Jimmy Wigdersons.

Wiggy also mentioned Tommy Thompson as a second statue for WISGOP to put up.  Since he was one of the most vociferous voices for the individual mandate in Obamacare, I could live with that.

However, since it is Jimmy Wigderson we are discussing, let me nominate two people for statues who better embody the true spirit of the WISGOP:

1. Has to be Joe Mccarthy.  No one embodies WISGOP values of paranoia, hatred, BS and outright lies than McCarthy.



2.  I would recommend, someone Wiggy has mentioned as the perfect rep = Wild Bill Kramer!

 

Yes we did not think it possible, but "White Wisconsin ---- Now even Whiter!!!"