Thursday, January 31, 2013

JSOnline - Bad For Your Brain, Bad For Your Computer

While working on another story, I went to click on an old article on JSOnline.  Instead of the article I was seeking, this popped up:

click to embiggen

I can't quite tell if it's because of Christian Schneider or Aaron Rodriguez, but you know it's bad either way.

My Super Bowl Pick

Being a Chicago Bear fan, I do not have a dog in the fight, so I had to pick someone to root for this weekend and I picked between


To appreciate how much traction the legalization of same-sex marriage has gained, you can look to the Inaugural Address that President Obama just delivered, in which he used some of his precious 18 minutes to throw a spotlight on the issue and to make his support for it clearer than ever.

Or you can look in a much different direction: to the rough-and-tumble, testosterone-charged world of professional football, and to a succinct but extraordinary email that(former Bear)Brendon Ayanbadejo, a linebacker for the Baltimore Ravens, sent only hours after his team defeated the New England Patriots on Sunday night and gained passage to the game of all games, the Super Bowl, to be played this year in New Orleans.

With his team now headed to New Orleans, and with sports reporters eager to lap up each player’s every word, had he just been handed a louder megaphone than he’d ever possessed before?

He tapped out an email to Brian Ellner, a leading marriage-equality advocate with whom he had worked before, and Michael Skolnik, the political director for Russell Simmons, a hip-hop mogul who has become involved in many issues, including same-sex marriage.

Ayanbadejo wrote: “Is there anything I can do for marriage equality or anti- bullying over the next couple of weeks to harness this Super Bowl media?” The time stamp on the email was 3:40:35 A.M.

 Brendon Ayanbadejo Interview With Ben Tatar

Or this

A player for the Super Bowl-bound San Francisco 49ers gave a controversial, anti-gay interview just days ahead of the NFL's championship game.
Speaking with shock jock Artie Lange, cornerback Chris Culliver said he's not OK with gay players in the NFL or on his team.
"I don't do the gay guys man," Culliver said, according to Yahoo. "I don't do that. No, we don't got no gay people on the team, they gotta get up out of here if they do."
Culliver went on to say that gays would not be welcomed in the locker room, but if they remained closeted, he might be all right with them playing.
"Yeah, come out 10 years later," he said.

Go Ravens!!!

Walkergate: Morally, Ethically and Financially Bankrupt

As the gentle reader is fully aware, earlier this month, Tim Russell, Scott Walker's long time political aide and very good friend, was sentenced for stealing money from a veterans fund and a couple of political campaigns. In his plea bargain, we also confirmed that the investigators could have gotten him for so much more - from illegal politicking to child enticement.

Just last week, Russell's domestic and business partner, took a plea deal. Instead of being convicted of child enticement, he was able to get off the hook with contributing to the delinquency of a minor.

So as one can plainly see, these two miscreants are completely and utterly morally and ethically bankrupt.

But they are also financially bankrupt. As I kept pointing out, Russell was strapped for cash, having spent all of his purloined money on vacations and whatnot.

Thanks to a friend of Cog Dis, I have been made privy to the paperwork showing that both Russell and Pierick had filed for bankruptcy on March 30, 2012. That was about the time that two of Russell's attorneys - Mike Maistelman and Andrew Franklin - started arguing over some money that Russell came across from his mother.

(By the way, the bankruptcy papers showed that Russell's mother ended up giving him $10,000 during this whole mess. Another woman gave Russell $7,500. Talk about throwing good money after bad!)

What is interesting is that the attorney representing both men is Michael P. Maxwell.

For the political wonks, that name might ring a bell, as it should. Both Attorney Maxwell and his wife, Georgia, have ties directly to Scott Walker, as evidenced in this press release - and take note who sent out said press release:
Contact: Tim Russell (414) 298-0008


WEST ALLIS – Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker announced today the hiring of long-time Wisconsin political professional and small business owner Georgia Maxwell as campaign manager of his
Milwaukee County Executive re-election campaign.

“Georgia has extensive campaign experience and great enthusiasm. I am pleased to have her in this leadership role,” Walker said. “She will make an excellent addition to our already strong team.”
“It is an honor and a privilege to serve in this role on Scott’s campaign,” Maxwell said. “I am excited to play a part in his re-election efforts so that he can continue to fight for the taxpayers of Milwaukee County.”

Maxwell has extensive Wisconsin campaign experience stretching back over a decade. In addition to helping elect Dan Vrakas as Waukesha County Executive in 2005, she has worked on numerous attorney
general, congressional, legislative, and municipal elections, including Bob Welch’s 1994 U.S. Senate race.

Currently, Maxwell is President of the Maxwell Group, a public affairs, grassroots, and message development consulting firm. Previously, she was employed as Government Affairs Director for the
Wisconsin Credit Union League and as a Capitol staffer for more than 10 years, working for State Senator Mike Ellis and State Representative Luther Olsen.

Maxwell received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Wisconsin –Madison. She is married with three children. Her husband, Mike Maxwell, is a prominent attorney in West Allis.
Not only did Russell work with the Maxwells on Walker's last campaign to be Milwaukee County Executive, but Pierick also fits in this big, warm, politically incestuous family. As we learned in Russell's sentencing memo, Pierick used to work for Attorney Maxwell.

But there are some other points of interest that I gleaned from the paperwork.

One is that both men have the same address listed.  However, that address is for a UPS store mailbox.

Another peculiarity is that Russell is suing his former employer, Wyndham Resorts for wrongful termination.  Likewise, Pierick is suing the State of Wisconsin for wrongful termination.  What makes this really weird is that both men have retained Attorney Andrew Franklin to pursue these matters.

Yes, that's the same Attorney Andrew Franklin who stopped representing Russell during the Walkergate trial because Russell couldn't or wouldn't pay him anymore.

The one thing that kept crossing my mind as I was poring over the documents and writing this article is that all the time that Russell was losing his home, all his money, going into debt with his mom and who knows who else, Walker was actively working to support Kelly Rindfleisch's legal defense.

Presuming that Russell and Pierick were smart enough to figure this out, how do you suppose that made them feel.  Furthermore, do you think that this would be enough to get them to spill everything they knew?

If so, there are probably some very nervous people out there that aren't getting a lot of rest.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

The Waukesha Rifleman, er, Freeman

It's darn near impossible to make it through the day without hearing some right wing crank complaining about the "liberal media."

I'm still waiting for someone to show me a news source that is liberal.  The closest they can come is one that simply tells the truth.

Usually, the papers will keep the most egregious of their bias limited to the editorial page, such as Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's David Haynes and Ernst-Ulrich Franzen.  That said, their bias seeps through in the way their news stories are edited as well.

But this is to be expected, I suppose, when the newspapers are just another facet of the corporate media that has taken over the industry.

The Waukesha Freeman is no exception.  If anything, they are a little further right than even most newspapers.

Their "guest editorial" calumnists include James Wigderson, Mark Belling, Jessica McBride and Owen Robinson.

Not one intellectual, one one honest person, not one progressive or liberal. (Yes, I realize that was rather redundant.)

But as unfathomable as it might seem, that daily has gone even more to the right.

They just hired a new overnight editor.  In the newspaper business, a night editor can control copy and make executive decisions on content.  So one would expect that a newspaper would want to make sure that their night editor is level-headed, objective, intelligent and most of all, sane.

They failed in every category with their new overnight editor, Steve Van Dien.

Check out some of these Facebook driveling he has posted and tell me if you would trust any news that comes from a paper he worked for:

And that's just a flavor of them.

Perhaps it's time for the paper to change it's name to the Walkersha Rifleman.

Solidarity Fish Fry, Week 17: Tartar Sauce For All!

Just a reminder from your friendly neighborhood union thug that this Friday will be the seventeenth week of the Solidarity Fish Fry!

This is why we do it.

And again - please pay attention - is how we do it:

  1. Go to Serb Hall in Milwaukee anytime between 11:30 am and 9 pm.
  2. Tell the host you want a union table - the servers are usually Michelle, Victoria and Sandra
  3. Enjoy a fish fry or buffet
  4. Leave a good tip and make sure they know it's in support of the union workers
  5. Move along so the other union supporters can get their fish fry on too.
Pretty simple, right? Yet I keep seeing people going to the wrong section.  Don't let them trick you into going into the wrong part.

This week will be a little different than the past sixteen weeks.

The gentle eater will find that there is enough tartar sauce to go around. 

Randy Bryce, the Tsar of Tartar Sauce, is on a world tour to promote the Solidarity Fish Fry and his new books - "Tartar Sauce Is Our Friend" and "101 Great Tartar Sauce Recipes."

So come where the fish is good, the solidarity is strong and there's enough tartar sauce to go around!

And tell them that Cog Dis sent ya!

White Fright!

By Jeff Simpson

Who would have thought, that in the year 2013, the republican party would still be overcome by fear of minorities?  

Yesterday Capper told us about Charlie Sykes new major project, the website White Wisconsin.  

At least half a dozen local, black, conservative authors, including Wonder Woma - who had stood up to Glenn Grothman's attack on Kwanzaa - offered to submit contributions to the web site. Each and everyone was turned down.
 A quick check of the news and you see this is not just in Wisconsin where prominent republicans are scared of minorities,  but it is happening nationally also.  When you have someone who likes to beat the "minorities are taking over fraudulently" drum as much as their leader reince priebus does, this is to be expected.  

Let's start in Delevan where the local school talked about "white privilege" and the state/national republicans went into a tizzy!

The “American Diversity” class was taught to students at Delavan-Darien High School in Wisconsin, Fox News has learned.
“They’re teaching white guilt,” one parent told Fox News. “They’re dividing the students. They’re saying to non-whites, ‘You have been oppressed and you’re still being oppressed.’”
The parent, who asked not to be identified, has an 18-year-old son who was enrolled in the class and became alarmed after she looked at some of the handouts provided to the students.
“I felt it was indoctrination,” she said. “This is a radical left agenda and ideology that is now embedded in our school.”
The parent said the students were taught “if you’re white, you’re oppressing. If you’re non white, you’ve been a victim.”
 Of course Fox news is always available for stories like this.  I am proud to say that our school district has attended the White Privilege conference in the past! 

Then there was Glenn Grothman's recent racially charged rant against planned parenthood:

Not to mention, Tommy Thompson's son Jason, an attorney at Michael Best & Friedrich, who wanted to send our President "back to Kenya".   Paul Ryan(R-ayn rand) let everyone know the only reason he is not vice president today is because of those darn "urban voters"

Things are just as ugly nationally as they are locally.   There was the incident at the republican convention where some attendees threw peanuts at an African American camerawoman saying,"this is how we feed the animals".  To Mitt's famous 47% line to paul ryan's continuous whining about "entitlements" to Jim Sensenbrenner's critique of Michelle Obama's body.    There is also the despicable attack the republicans just commenced on Ambassador Susan Rice. 

It has become such a problem that Colin Powell felt obliged to give a national interview to address it!   All of these code words and pushing the line, helps focus on the fear and gets the base riled up, unfortunately it gets the real crazy even more crazy.   Arie Perliger of  West Point just finished a study of America's violent far right:

“since 2007, there has been a dramatic rise in the number of attacks and violent plots originating from individuals and groups who self- identify with the far-right of American politics.”

Written by Arie Perliger, Director of Terrorism Studies at the Combating Terrorism Center and an Assistant Professor at the Department of Social Sciences at West Point, the paper asserts that three distinct ideologies exist in the “American violent far right.” Those are “a racist/white supremacy movement, an anti-federalist movement and a fundamentalist movement,” the last of which “includes mainly Christian Identity groups such as the Aryan Nations.”

“Findings indicate that…it is not only feelings of deprivation that motivate those involved in far right violence, but also the sense of empowerment that emerges when the political system is perceived to be increasingly permissive to far right ideas,” it later reads.
Some of the very same people who fund these far right extremist groups also fund Scott Walker(but thats a for another post)

Walker's Contribution To Dane County Airport

The good news is that 2012 was the second best year for passenger traffic for the Dane County airport.

The bad news is that it only happened because of all of Scott Walker's junkets across the country to do fund raising for his recall and his legal cooperation fund.

Without those trips, the airport would have had their worst year ever.

Supervisor Deanna Alexander Sheds Crocodile Tears

In the ongoing power grab attempt by Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele and his merry band of plutocrats at the Greater Milwaukee Committee, at least one Milwaukee County Supervisor, Deanna Alexander, has offered herself up like a sacrificial lamb.

In her effort to help destroy Milwaukee County government in favor a totalitarian plutocracy, she went running to Dan Bice complaining of hostility from her fellow supervisors.

Her complaint broke down to three things:
  • She alleges that was denied permission by Chairwoman Marina Dimitrijevic to send out a press release for a town hall she wanted to hold,
  • She alleges she was forced to lie about allegedly being denied sending the release by Dimitrijevic, and
  • She alleges that Supervisor John Weishan yelled at her, making her feel "bruised" after their discussion.
The only problem is that anyone can see that none of these hold water.

It took me maybe all of fifteen seconds to see that Alexander sent her press release for the town hall.  She also sent a joint release with Milwaukee Alderman Jim Bohl advocating for the destruction of all local governments in favor of regional ones.

In fact, her web page shows that Alexander has had no problems whatsoever sending out a press release with almost as much frequency as Scott Walker or Bob Donovan.

As for Alexander's second allegation, she got caught in a lie and tried to play it this way:
When word of the kerfuffle began to circulate, Alexander misled the Journal Sentinel by saying there were no problems. She retracted that explanation last week, saying Dimitrijevic urged her to mislead the media.

"I was told to send that to you," Alexander said.

Dimitrijevic disputed Alexander's remarks.

"As for any emails she's sending or retracting, I have no control over any of them," Dimitrijevic said in an email. "Supervisor Alexander writes and sends them at her own discretion."
Does Alexander really expect us to believe that after sending out press releases for a year, she is suddenly unable to do anything on her own and is getting bullied by Dimitrijevic?

I wonder if she also blames Dimitrijevic for writing glowing accolades of Scott Walker during her campaign and then suddenly and inexplicably scrubbing them.

In other words, Alexander is no stranger to going back on her words and making things up as she goes along.

As for the alleged run in with Weishan, I'm almost lost for words.

Did Alexander really expect that if she came in telling her colleagues they suck, that they don't deserve to get paid or have any authority at all, they would carry her on their shoulders and throw a parade for her?  Considering the way she trash talked Tracey Corder during her election campaign, I really doubt that she is all that tender-hearted.

Furthermore, it seems unlikely that she is all that concerned about a hostile work environment.  This is especially true given that she works with several LGBT community members, yet did not hesitate to proudly support the anti-gay Chick-Fil-A Day in Racine.

Given the evidence, including her long history of lying, bigotry and deception, it is shockingly apparent that this is just another example of her dishonesty.

Even the fact that she is willing to sacrifice herself to help blow up county government is not a shocker.  Her own website says that she wants to "rebrand" county government, like it's a sort of business.  Alexander doesn't even hold enough regard for the county or her constituents to hold her election day parties in the county, much less her own district.

I would suggest that Alexander focus on building up her community and trying to get some economic activity going on in her district - things that the people want, deserve and sorely need - instead of trying to tear down the rest of the county.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Campfield to poor kids: Bad grades? No food.

Most of the time, when the GOP anywhere does or says something stupid, I'm never really surprised, outraged or shocked. I've become incredibly numb to their caveman way of living and try to ignore them. However, having just learned that a state senator in Tennessee thinks the way to combat less than satisfactory performance of students is to withhold government aid such as food stamps, my ears perked up.

It's been proven over and over that students who go to school hungry DO NOT perform to their abilities in the classroom. Could you sit at work for 8 hours if you haven't eaten since the day before? Or even the day before that? Of course not. So why would we take away the little bit these families have? The state senator in question, Mr. Stacey Campfield (of the "Don't Say Gay" fame) states, "If the family doesn't care if the child goes to school or does well in school, the odds of that child getting out of poverty are pretty low." While it is very true that parent involvement in a child's education is a great way to ensure their continued academic success, I think it's safe to say that full out starvation is not the way to get to that success.

Along with parent involvement, there's many other factors that contribute to a child succeeding in school and not going to school starving is one of them. Another is NOT cutting funding for schools, but that's socialism, so we can't do that.

The GOP will stop at nothing to punish the less fortunate.

To read more on the effects of poverty and hunger on academics, click here.

Keeping the Atheist in Christmas!

By Jeff Simpson

A lot has been said and written about the following clip, how Senator Ron Johnson (R-class rings) said that Obamacare " was the greatest assault on freedom" . Well RoJo said that when he was running for office and still was elected.  Besides, he was correct anyway.  Thanks to Obamacare, millions of Americans are no longer "free" to die a slow horrible painful death because they do not have insurance. 

However there is a better quote I would like to point out:

"A friend of mine, Ben Ganther, who is a small business owner and owner of a construction company, called me up one day and said there is this bid ole statue on the side of the road for sale. It was Atlas and he had the world and it was obviously the Atlas shrugged symbol, and said you know he was thinking about buying it.  I said absolutely, I will pay for half.  So he bought it up right away because he is a contractor, put it up in front of his business, you know in a really nice stand with a nice little patio around it lights and he puts Christmas lights on it in the winter time.  So I was proud to actually participate in that project."

Yes Ron nothing celebrates the birth of Jesus, like a bunch of commercial lights on a statue of a false deity who represents a bad book written by a devout Atheist.   Way to understand the true meaning of Christmas guys!    

Unfortunately Linus Van Pelt is smarter than our Senator:

True School Choice!

By Jeff Simpson

Scott Walker blows his dog whistle, by declaring this week "school choice" week and guess what......

The dogs come running! and thy are all trying to bark as loudly as they can to be the one dog noticed in a pack of rabid astroturf! 

There was this, this and this to start and of course when the Governor needs to say something, Astroturf in Action rolls out the money and the red carpet to him!  

It is time to stop the massive grab for our children's education funds!  

For our factually challenged friends, we already have school choice,  For those who want to just steal our childrens education money for your own bank account - yes I mean you Scooter Jensen: Go climb under the floorboards where you belong!!

For the rest of you who truly care about (Y)our children's education, let us make sure that they are fully funded.   We can make sure that ALL of our kids,  get a solid education by funding our public schools.  We can make it so when we speak of "school choice" that means that our kids can choose between different languages, or a business department or Physics or advanced Biology.  Let us have enough staff to help the teachers and the students who need it.  Let the schools be fully staffed in nurses, counselors, social workers, etc ... to make sure and be able to help the kids who so desperately need it! let's stop with the stadardized tests and pay our teachers when they advance their careers academically.

That is TRUE school Choice, not the snake oil Scooter and Scotty are trying to sell us.

Caption This!

And do try to remember this is a family blog...

Charlie Sykes' White Wisconsin

Image courtesy of
One Wisconsin Now
As I just wrote yesterday, Charlie Sykes and Wisconsin Club for Growth have joined forces to see how many fools they can part from their money. It is officially behind a paywall now, but if you know the code, and if you're a glutton for punishment, you can still check it out for a week for free.*

In an email from Sykes, he had this big spiel touting the site:
This is the grand opening of RightWisconsin, our new digital community. Our team has created a new distribution channel for conservative ideas and a new forum for you. Unlike my radio show, we don't sign off. Unlike my TV show, Sunday Insight, we don't have a time slot.

The conversation continues, on demand, when you want. We're here 24/7, helping rise above the mainstream media filter and providing a one-stop shop for conservatives who care about Wisconsin--which as you know, continues to be the center of the Political Universe.

Our Perspectives page is home to exclusive columns from prominent conservatives as well as new voices which you need to hear.

Daily Takes is our mega blog, which will update throughout the day with new items from our cadre of contributors.

And, I think you're going to love The Feed. It's our look at the conservative social media stream, packaged just for you. Scroll through it. Just like RightWisconsin's potential, that feature is endless.

We continue to bring you the Key Reads each day. We serve up the best takes from around the web and we'll ask you a different polling question each day.

This is your site. This is your community. Welcome.

Check us out, kick the tires and let us know what you think.

Let's roll...

-Charlie Sykes
Yada, yada, yada. Like I said, they're just aggregating free stuff and hoping people will be stupid enough to pay them for it.

And to show how uncreative these squawkers are, "Daily Takes" is the name of Brian Fraley's old blog. Fraley, who is the master aggregator for this ventrue, couldn't even come up with something original.

But there is already problems in paradise.

After all the time and money that they spent promoting "Right Wisconsin," they've really should have been promoting the real name of the blog, "White Wisconsin."

At least half a dozen local, black, conservative authors, including Wonder Woma - who had stood up to Glenn Grothman's attack on Kwanzaa - offered to submit contributions to the web site. Each and everyone was turned down.

When confronted on the monochromatic nature of his site, Sykes said that they would have "one of the country's most provocative black conservatives. Stay turned."

Undoubtedly, that "provocative black conservative" is none other than James T. Harris, who is best known for making an ass out of himself during the Obama - McCain race four years ago.

While Sykes is no stranger to race baiting, he is also very conscious of the fact that some of his main contributors includes Brian Sikma and the other racists at Media Trackkkers. If Sykes features more than a token black, regardless of how conservative they are, he might lose his Teapublican credentials.

After all, in the world of Sykes and company, it's not just enough to be a conservative, you have to be the white right kind of conservative.

But if Sykes keeps on this way, he might be getting himself in for more than he bargained.  This could get fun.

*If you're really interested, the pass word is "founder."

Monday, January 28, 2013

Scott Walker Pro Tip

Here's a pro tip for Scott Walker:

Don't shoot flaming arrows or you'll end up with flaming pants.

Abele Refuses To Commit To Taxpayers

I pointed out last week that the GMC members who formed a land development group called UWM Foundation had reneged on their promises to protect the natural habitat of the county grounds as they set it up for profiteering, er, I mean development.  Instead of preserving anything, they hired a company from Illinois to come up and cut down dozens of century old trees.

Eschweiler Buildings
If you want a full accounting of the saga of how the people of Wauwatosa and Milwaukee County have been repeatedly ignored and betrayed by Scott Walker, then Wauwatosa Mayor Jill Didier and the part time Wauwatosa Common Council, the Riverkeepers have an excellent summary.

In a nut shell, what happened is that the protests of the people were ignored in favor of the false promises of prosperity and the lure of big money and the grounds were sold for a song.  Then as things progressed through "vetting" from the Wauwatosa Common Council, more and more land was ceded to the developers.  To make things worse, the Tosa Common Council gave the developers $12 million in the form of a TIF.  And that was on top of the more than $5 million given to the developers by the federal government.

As soon as the deal was done, the developers started to change things.  Instead of restoring the Eschweiler Buildings as promised, the developers, claiming poverty, started the process to sell that land to yet another developer that wanted to tear these nationally recognized historic buildings down.  After catching too much flack, they decided they might be able to save one of the buildings - for a price.

Not they're trying to drive that price even higher, by sticking the county taxpayers with the bill for their profit taking:
Milwaukee County may be asked to take a haircut on the $13.55 million agreed-upon price for selling a large chunk of the County Grounds in Wauwatosa for a University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee development in order to pay for preservation of the historic Eschweiler buildings, county supervisors were told Monday.

Wauwatosa City Administrator Jim Archambo said the city was grappling with how to meet a shortfall of $2.5 million to $6.55 million to restore five historic buildings on the site designed by noted architect Alexander Eschweiler. The century-old structures were originally used for the Milwaukee County School of Agriculture and Domestic Economy, and efforts to save the buildings were a key part of the sale negotiations some four years ago.

The county sold the buildings and an 89-acre parcel to a UWM Foundation affiliate in 2009 and has collected $5 million toward the purchase price so far. A second $5 million payment is due in 2014, with four additional annual payments of $887,500 made from 2015 through '18.
The evil County Board of Supervisors, who the GMC wants to destroy, are pointing out that the developers knew what they were getting into before they made the deal and that they made a deal with the taxpayers and ought to be expected to keep their end of the bargain.

Chris Abele, who is personal friends with the developers, who could pay for the land out of their own money if they wanted to, wasn't as ready to stand up for the taxpayers:
Brendan Conway, a spokesman for County Executive Chris Abele, said it was too early to speculate on whether the county might agree to take less money for the property.
How the heck is it to soon to expect that the developers keep their end of the bargain?

Abele is third from left, happy to
destroy the county grounds
for his rich friends.
 Well, for Abele, he is hoping that this can wait until the county board gets hamstrung so that he can give a break to his buddies for their support in his power grab.  With a greatly weakened board, he figures he can get anything he wants passed.

Furthermore, some of the developers, like Michael Cudahy, have already said that they want other parts of county property, such as the lakefront, for development as well, so they can really clean up at the taxpayers' expense.

I don't understand how anyone would want to get rid of the group of people looking out for their best interest in favor of consolidating power in the hands of one person who is only looking out for the special interests.  But then again, the only people I see really supporting this power grab are the ones beholden to Abele and the GMC.

Shrill's Family Tree

By Jeff Simpson

Shrill Labarre, was caught on video talking to her family tree.   One would think that if Shrill had found an Ent, she could have at least found an intelligent one!   I personally would have figured that Shril's family lineage would have been that of a bunch of rocks, but trees make sense also.  

H/T Blue Cheddar:

Unfortunately the three time assembly loser, and failed recall leader, would have picked up on the hint  of her perpetual rejection by her friends and neighbors that they have no interest in anything she has to say.  Unfortunately this time she comes very well funded, to the great dismay of the people and wildlife of Northern Wisconsin. 

By the way Shrill, it turns out Global Climate Change is worse than we even thought! 

Lord Stern, author of the government-commissioned review on climate change that became the reference work for politicians and green campaigners, now says he underestimated the risks, and should have been more “blunt” about the threat posed to the economy by rising temperatures.

In an interview at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Stern, who is now a crossbench peer, said: “Looking back, I underestimated the risks. The planet and the atmosphere seem to be absorbing less carbon than we expected, and emissions are rising pretty strongly. Some of the effects are coming through more quickly than we thought then.”

Looks like someone forgot to tell the tree!  

EDIT NOTE:  Looks like we have uncovered the unedited version of Shrillee and the Tree!  Enjoy!

Republican Funnies

A collection of republican craziness, I have been collecting.  Probably all need their own posts but for time purposes, adding them here.  

1.   A New Mexico bill would imprison rape victims who have an abortion

hould a recently introduced bill in New Mexico become law, rape victims will be required to carry their pregnancies to term during their sexual assault trials or face charges of "tampering with evidence."
Under HB 206, if a woman ended her pregnancy after being raped, both she and her doctor would be charged with a felony punishable by up to 3 years in state prison:
Tampering with evidence shall include procuring or facilitating an abortion, or compelling or coercing another to obtain an abortion, of a fetus that is the result of criminal sexual penetration or incest with the intent to destroy evidence of the crime.
Sexual assault trials are infamously grueling for survivors, who are often subjected to character assassination and other attempts to discredit their accounts. State Rep. Cathrynn Brown's (R) bill would add the forced choice between prison or an unwanted pregnancy to these proceedings.

2. How do republicans truly feel about crazy gun bills?  Ayep scared to death of them, and support them anyway!  

Majority Whip Erik Helland, who is on a subcommittee assigned to the controversial bill, laments over how he was blasted in a blog about the bill during the earwigged conversation. He then goes on to complain about his part in the Alaska bill:
“I’m the dirty hatchet man for the [Republican] caucus. Something nobody wants to do, some dirty, nasty job. I’m the one who gets dropped in. You know why? Because I’m expendable.”
Speaker pro tem, Jeff Kaufmann, sympathizes with Helland’s plight, calling the Alaska Bill, “the crazy, give-a-handgun-to-a-schizophrenic bill.” At that point, someone – an aide, perhaps – rushes to the rescue, informing the unwitting Republicans that their off-the-cuff conversation is being overheard via a hot mic, and the conversation comes to a quick halt.

3.   You know Roger "some girls rape so easy" Rivard lost his seat in the Assembly.  Did you know that the Wisconsin republicans, led by Robin Vos, spent almost $100,000 to try and keep that seat?   Did you know that the republicans actually cried, when they had to say goodbye to Rivard?  

The comments by Majority Leader Scott Suder (R-Abbotsford) came as Assembly Republicans bid Rivard, a Rice Lake Republican, and other losing incumbents goodbye in the state Capitol.
“I cannot say enough about the person you are,” Suder told Rivard. “I’m proud to call you a dear, dear friend. … You are always welcome in this caucus.”
I hope the people in Suder's district who have daughters, nieces, cousins, sisters, etc...  remember this in 2 years!

4.  Glenn Grothman went on a racist rant again and no one even blinked:

5.   TN Republican Stacey Campfield wants to cut food assistance to kids with bad report cards!

Alas, it is true that Tennessee State Sen. Stacey Campfield has now reached a low beyond which I wouldn’t have believed even he could sink – both as an elected official who continues to waste tax dollars with his continual “stunt” legislation, as well as a human being.

 Mr. Campfield has introduced a new bill which slashes Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) payments for parents or caretakers of TANF recipients whose children fail to maintain satisfactory progress in school.
5a.  Republican Stacey Campield hit the crazy waves a second time!

  Campfield is under fire for comments he made last week on a Sirius XM radio program.  On the Michelangelo Signorile Show, the Knoxville senator said that the HIV epidemic came from a single gay airline employee having sexual relations with a monkey and that it is "virtually impossible" for AIDS to be transmitted during heterosexual sex.  Experts say both of those claims are false.
Luckily there is sanity everywhere, as a local restaurant refused to serve him!

 7.  Newly elected Texas Republican Senator Ted Cruz, calls Chuck Hagel and John Kerry, "less than ardent supporters" of our military

 FYI:  Hagel, a former Republican senator who Obama nominated for secretary of defense, and Kerry, a Democratic senator and nominee for secretary of state, both served in the Vietnam War. Hagel received two Purple Hearts; Kerry received three and a Silver Star and a Bronze Star.

Now tell me again how both parties are equally crazy?   

The Barron County GOP Rides Again

Jeff Simpson has already written about the Barron County Republican Party, which floated the moronic conspiracy theory that the horrific mass shooting in Newtown, Connecticut was a plot by the government in order to take away everyone's guns.

Well, they've gone and done it again.

This time, they posted this image on their Facebook page:

There's only one problem.

Washington never said that.

Via Daily Kos, we learn what Washington really said:
The actual quote comes from Washington's address to Congress on January  8th, 1790 and goes like this: "A free people ought not only to be armed, but disciplined; to which end a Uniform and well digested plan is requisite: And their safety and interest require that they should promote such manufactories, as tend to render them independent others, for essential, particularly for military supplies."  Note that the quote has nothing to do with gun rights and is clearly concerns properly equipping the military.
Perhaps the Barron County GOP really shouldn't have guns.  They can't seem to shoot straight no matter what.

Sykes Prepares To Fleece The Herd

On Monday, Charlie Sykes is going to take his aggregate web site, Right Wisconsin, sponsored by the Wisconsin Club for Growth,  behind the pay wall.

The whole thing is rather hilarious and shows what gullible sheeple the right can be.

As I wrote before about this wannabe power site:
After following the site for several weeks, I have ascertained that it serves two main purposes.

The secondary reason they created this site is an effort to control the message. It will be a great resource for right wingers that are afraid of the real world and only want information that supports and reinforces their own skewed sense of reality. You know the type. The ones that think American for Preposterousness is really a grass roots movement or that President Barack Obama is a communist, socialist, Marxist, socialist, Nazi, space alien, baby-eating Kenyan.

The primary reason for this site is the same one that any conservative organization does anything - to make money.
Now think about this for a minute.

Sykes and the Club for Growth have joined up to build a website that aggregates the posts from places like MacIver, Wisconsin Reporter, Media Trackkkers and the rest of the special interest propaganda sites. They also scrape the right wing echo chamber parrots like James Wigderson, Owen Robinson and the like.

All of which is free for a mouse click.

Now they expect people to pay five bucks a month for what they could have for free. They'll even through in Sykes' Twitter feed and Facebook feed, both of which, again, are free. (Unless he blocks you like he did to me.)

So they're hoping that people will be willing to pay for lies and propaganda, written by Grade Z hacks, which they could have gotten for free all along.

Sad to say, I think they will get a surprisingly large number of sheeples to bite. If they are foolish enough to believe this nonsense in the first place, they're foolish enough to pay someone to lie to them.

But even Sykes and his sponsors at the Club for Growth are lefty weenies when compared to the conservatives' conservatives at Far Right Wisconsin, which by the way is absolutely free.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

The Numbers Don't Lie, But Walker Sure Does

I have repeatedly pointed out in this here blog that Scott Walker's job numbers are really much worse than advertised.  The right wing media gives him credit for creating some 37,000 jobs since taking office.  I still hold that many of those jobs were due to the carryover effect of Governor Jim Doyle's budget and policies, as this chart clearly demonstrates:

But even if you give Walker the benefit of the doubt, he is still doing a pathetic job in addressing the most overwhelming issue facing this state.  It's even worse when one considers how he conned the voters into thinking that he would create 250,000 jobs in his first term.  What he has done is worse than if he had done nothing at all!

And as a textbook example of that which I speak, this story from last year has bubbled up to the top of the Cheddarspere again showing just how far Walker is willing to go to take credit for Doyle's hard work:
With that in mind, welcome to this week’s episode in the stirring adventures of Scott Walker – the ‘truth challenged’ Governor of Wisconsin.

Today’s chapter involves the Curt Manufacturing Company, a large manufacturer of trailer hitches located near Eau Claire, Wisconsin where the Governor traveled last week – with news cameras and writers in tow – to make a big fuss about providing the funding that will create 125 new jobs at the company.

No problem there. Anytime a new job is created in this country, that is reason, indeed, for a celebration.

In a news release, Walker said –
This project directly creates 125 new jobs and indirectly creates 129 jobs, resulting in $12.6million in annual wages right here in Wisconsin. By providing these funds, we are bringing quality jobs to Wisconsin while improving road access to Curt Manufacturing’s expanded facility.

Via Wisconsin Journal Sentinel
Way to go Governor!

And by ‘Governor’, I am, of course, referring to Governor Jim Doyle, Walker’s Democratic predecessor who is the one actually responsible for arranging the funding that created the 125 jobs.

In a December, 2010 press release (prior to Walker taking office) the Wisconsin Department of Commerce in the Doyle Administration announced that they were awarding Curt Manufacturing the $400,000 in tax credits and $11 million in tax-free bonds that would create the 125 new jobs.

It gets better. Where do you imagine this funding came from?

A transportation grant created in the dreaded Obama stimulus program-the very legislation Governor Walker never misses an opportunity to trash.

So confusing was the dog and pony show Walker created to take credit for someone else’s work, the media actually found themselves confused. Was Walker announcing 125 jobs in addition to the 125 the media knew the Doyle Administration had already created?

“That’s unfortunately not accurate,” said Jim McKissick, the spokesman for Curt Manufacturing.

When the Governor’s office handled the matter in its typically disingenuous way (pretending there was nothing to see here), Commerce Secretary Paul Jardin stepped into the breach and made the effort to explain it away by blaming the confusion on Curt Manufacturing.

Generally, the press releases or press conferences are tied around when the company wants to do something,” Jadin said. “Obviously, they want to do it with a governor present. That’s probably what occurred here.

Yes, that is probably what happened here.

Clearly the Governor was caught in an odd situation where the receiver of the grant wanted whatever Governor was in office to show up in person to highlight the good news coming to Eau Claire.

Or not – or at least not according to the president of Curt Manufacturing, Curt Tamborino.

“Walker’s office had called and said they wanted to do this final presentation with a press release in front of the media,” Tamborino said Friday.
Is there anything Walker won't lie about?

Government Doesn't Create Jobs - Except When It Does.

How many times have we had to listen to Scott Walker and his apologists utter their bumper sticker mantra that "Government doesn't create jobs?"

This might come as a surprise to some people, but Walker was lying:
Grant funding awarded to the city of Fond du Lac will support a project that adds 70 new jobs at McNeilus Steel.

Gov. Scott Walker announced the $600,000 Transportation Economic Assistance grant on Thursday. It represents the Wisconsin Department of Transportation’s contribution toward rail improvements to serve McNeilus Steel. The city will not provide funds, but will act as sponsor of the grant.

“It’s exciting news to have things finalized and moving forward and we’re excited about the support from the state,” McNeilus General Manager Greg Head said.
To make it even more ironic is that it is taking to bodies of government to create these jobs.

But gee, does this mean Walker might be lying about other things too? Like the supposed surplus? Or that he's not John Doe?

Ron Johnson is a Weenie!

Truer words could not be spoken:

RoJo was a NoGo

Ron Johnson (R - class rings)  had a very bad week! As a matter of fact he had the worst week in Washington DC.  He bit off more than he could chew when he tried to attack Secretary Clinton and then Senator Kerry!  

Our Dumb Senator, then tried to get into with John Kerry and again was fed his lunch:

But really as we know, anytime RoJo tries to speak in public it never goes well for him!   

For the record, Ron Johnson believes affordable contraception is easily distributed over the Internet, thinks "sunspot activity" is responsible for global warming, believes the Great Recession ended before President Obama took office; and sees public investment in alternative energy as roughly the same thing as "the Soviet Union."
 The thing is, RoJo will gladly be the laughing stock of all of the country, because he know got a line that the echo chamber can use when they want to throw out red meat to the crazies!  

They have what they want: a soundbite they can rip from context and use as a cudgel to beat the administration and Secretary Clinton with. I’m not sure if they really expect their efforts to color mainstream coverage of this story, but it’s clear that that’s what they’re hoping. They have a new “you didn’t build that,” a new “spread the wealth around,” and they’re going to wring everything they can out of it.
 How do we know that this analysis is spot on?  Check the crazy right wing blogs that are incapable of their own thoughts.  

Looks like it worked as planned here and here!   How heavy is that water?  


Koch-Funded Study Shows Global Climate Change Is Man Made

This Koch-funded reanalysis of millions of temperature observations from around the world, “A New Estimate of the Average Earth Surface Land Temperature Spanning 1753 to 2011,” concludes: solar forcing does not appear to contribute to the observed global warming of the past 250 years; the entire change can be modeled by a sum of volcanism and a single anthropogenic (human-made) proxy.
Read the whole thing here.

Plutocrats Back Off Of Overreaching Power Grab...For Now...Sort Of

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel is reporting that Representative Joe Sanfelippo (R-Teabagistan) is backing off of the plan of destroying Milwaukee County government and putting the plutocrats firmly in control of the county.

Well, he sort of is:
State Rep. Joe Sanfelippo (R-West Allis) said in an interview that he'll still introduce a bill in about a week that will call for a later referendum and likely include a major cut in the County Board's budget.

He wants the Assembly to act on the measure soon but would consider recommending amendments to the state Senate if the County Board enacts its own reforms that he considers adequate, said Sanfelippo, a former county supervisor. "I'm using the old trust-but-verify approach," Sanfelippo said. "I'm proceeding with the bill but in a way that will allow time for (supervisors) doing some things on their own.

"If they don't do it, the state's gonna do it."


Sanfelippo said another reason for backing off the April 2 referendum date was the concern that supervisor pay would be greatly reduced just one year into supervisors' four-year terms. All 18 supervisors won those terms last April. It would be unfair to chop the pay and convert the job to part time in midterm, some have argued.

Sanfelippo said he'd be willing to make some adjustments to his bill on how much the board's budget should be cut but did not suggest a different figure. He said he wants to see what the board may come up with on its own.
What Sanfelippo is saying to the county board is basically this, "Don't make me kill you...Kill yourself instead."

Yeah, that's a really persuasive argument.

Sadly, Milwaukee County Executive and Greater Milwaukee Committee sockpuppet Chris Abele shouted similar threats from the parapets of his ivory tower:
Abele said it was great some supervisors realized "the train has left the station, this (reform) is going to happen, that it's no longer a question anymore." He cautioned supervisors that voters expect major change, as evidenced by last spring's advisory votes in favor of a smaller and part-time board.

Anything that falls far short of the parameters of Sanfelippo's draft bill probably won't be viewed as sufficient, Abele said.

"The board can contribute whatever ideas it likes - the bill's going to happen," he said.

The public is tired of "half-measures," such as the board's own redistricting last year, which reduced the number of supervisors by one, to 18, Abele said.
That's a lot of bluster from a guy that just had his whole plan for usurping control of the county fall flat.

Don't kid yourself for a moment that they are backing off of their plans out of the kindness of their hearts. It's not that they're choosing not to do this, but they cannot do this. If they could, they wouldn't hesitate to do so.

It could be that the GMC proposal that Sanfelippo is fronting for doesn't pass legal muster.

It could be that GMC didn't grease Scott Fitzgerald's palm enough.

It could be that Abele has already expended too much of his political capital on his version of an Emergency Fiscal Manager, which didn't turn out the way that he and the GMC promised it would.

It could be that they weren't expecting and weren't ready for the groundswell of opposition and the focus on who and what they are or that they are the pot calling the kettle black.

Most likely, it was a combination of all of these things.

It is also a reflection of the hard work that Board Chairwoman Marina Dimitrijevic has put in to do outreach with all corners of the county. She has been doing town hall meetings in every district to talk about how government works and to explore ways the county and municipalities can work together in a responsible manner.

That is in sharp contrast to Abele who has been making deals behind closed doors and issuing edicts from behind his ivory tower.

But now that the plutocrats have backed off a bit for now, this would be a golden opportunity for the community to really discuss what form the government should take and where the changes would make the most sense.

For example, can anyone really give one positive Abele's done in the past two years?

He's thrown one tantrum after another. He's fired people left and right without giving reasons for it. He's given cushy positions, some of them made up, to his cronies. He's tried to illegally give his cronies bonus pay with tax dollars. He's arbitrarily decided to sell off county property to put a giant Pez dispenser on the lakefront. He's tried to privatize vital services. He's abdicated his duties to the mentally ill. He's abdicated his duties to public safety. He's slashed workers' pay so much that some county employees are actually eligible for food stamps and other benefits. He had his Chief of Staff try to frame an innocent man.

All the meantime, he's collected his full pay and benefits.

It really looks like the county executive's office is a prime place to start looking for "efficiencies."

So by all means, let's have this discussion. But let's be honest and let's put it all on the table.