Thursday, November 30, 2017

Millionaire donor Richard Uihlein, the founder of Uline Corp. backing Breitbart's Steve Bannon GOP candidates Nicholson and Roy Moore!

It's the Republican ideology that oddly controls the parties miserable and whiny "left behind" constituents, as they happily vote against their own self-interest. But for the millionaire and billionaire donor class, that ideology serves their best interests...and bottom lines of course. 

It's the party that doesn't even blink at the prospect of electing child predator judge Roy Moore to the U.S. Senate. Republican voters won't have a problem voting for Trumpian drone Kevin Nicholson either since he's getting big money from the same millionaire/billionaire donors stuffing Moore's campaign coffers.  Kevin is hanging with the alt-right crowd:

Moore and Nicholson are Richard and Liz Uihlein's kind of candidates, founders of the Uline Corp. Kevin Nicholson may have asked Moore to step aside, but he knows that ain't going to happen.

The whiny Uihlein's know this, and put their faith, ideology, and money on these extremist peas in a pod.

Even more surprising, Uline President Liz Uihlein isn't fazed by Moore's position on women. She's okay with this...seriously, you can't make this stuff up:
Moore co-authored a 2011 study course in which a speaker contended women should not be allowed to run for public office and, if they did, people have a moral obligation not to vote for them.

The study set was a product of Vision Forum, a Texas-based evangelical group led by Doug Phillips ... in a series of courses designed to teach public policy and ethics to its attendees. Vision Forum closed in 2013 after Phillips resignation following his admission of an extra-marital relationship. The woman in the relationship, Lourdes Torres-Manteufel, later sued Phillips and Vision Forum in connection to a relationship that she said began when she was 15.
The Whiny Uihlein's not Happy with Being Rich: The Uline Corporation has been waiting for years to see Amazon's Jeff Bazos tank the company. They say Amazon can't survive since they don't make a profit. That's not true though, since 2015: Inc. was known for years as the company with huge revenue growth that would spend too much to be profitable. That reputation can now be forever put to rest. The e-commerce giant reported its fourth consecutive quarter of profitability...nearly $1.2 billion in that time period.
Whine, whine, whine: You'd think with their money and success in the packaging supplies business, the Uihlein's would have taken the high road. Nope. Uline President Liz Uihlein made "fear Amazon" the company statement on their website, believe it or not: 

Since the 2009-10 election cycle, the Uihleins have contributed more than $26 million to Republican and conservative federal candidates, political party committees, political action committees (PACs) and an outside electioneering groupthe Ed Uihlein Family Foundation, which contributed nearly $35 million between 2007 and 2014 to civic, religious, and conservative groups, including the Heritage Foundation, Americans for Prosperity Foundation, Federalist Society, and the Illinois Policy Institute.

The top state recipients of Uihlein contributions between January 2010 and December 2015 were:
Walker’s campaign for governor, $284,500;
Republican Party of Wisconsin, $220,000;
Prosser Victory Recount Found, $50,000;
GOP Sen. Van Wanggaard, of Racine, $21,000;
Republican Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch, $17,700.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Ryan will try again to sell tax cuts...

Message to Betsy DeVos: No, parents aren't "forcing" their kids into college!

Speaking only about the states that refuse to treat our schools with respect, only trying to improve them, Betsy DeVos may be unaware of the school/business relationships developing nationwide to prepare kids for specialized jobs that are currently experiencing shortages. The collaboration is something businesses should have been pushing for decades after they gave up their own apprenticeship programs. They stopped waiting around for the government to come in and spend taxpayer money instead.
DeVos, behind the curve, as usual, is now jumping on board. EdWeek
DeVos has broadened her message, talking about issues like apprenticeships and alternatives to traditional four-year college.
Brilliant. We’re already doing that and expanding on the idea, try and keep up DeVos.

But worse, DeVos continues to push the idiotic idea that we’re somehow “forcing kids into believing” college is the solution. As a parent, I’m pushing, but I know that the final decision will be up to my own kid, college or tech school, or nothing. We don’t “push” or “force” our kids into…whatever. It’s a myth, a villain DeVos:
"We need to stop forcing kids into believing a traditional four-year degree is the only pathway to success," she said this month at the first meeting of the White House Task Force on Apprenticeship Expansion … help set up some incentives through the pending reauthorization of the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act.
Job training in high school doesn’t, in my opinion, give my kid broader options, later on, to retrain or more easily continue with his education, after 4 years of college. DeVos unconsciously made my case for me:
DeVos told a roomful of CEOs in Washington this month that many students aren't mastering the skills they need to be prepared for the careers of the future. She argued that 65 percent of today's kindergartners will end up in jobs that haven't even been conceived yet. Businesspeople, she said, have told her that students need to be able to think critically, know how to collaborate, communicate clearly, and be creative. "My observation is a lot of students today are not having their needs met to be prepared in those areas," DeVos said
School choice always sounds “empowering,” but really, it just plays to the fears of parents that they’re not doing enough.

And since choice and vouchers have a more spotty record than public schools, is it any wonder states don’t go full choice?

But she said no state has ever gone truly big with choice, offering it to every single student.  "We haven't had a state that tried it with everyone."

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Who's going to save Deer Hunting from Scott Walker?

Let's see, "registered deer down about 1% from 2016, the second-lowest total in 35 yearsHunter participation also was down, the lowest in 41 years." 

The Walker administration hopes the following denials and weak excuses will make sense to their diehard true believers. Like saying deer hunting itself is not declining in popularity...or that hunting is more spread out now. Ah, show us the numbers? WPR:

How did we get here? A short history:
Democratic Sen. Kathleen Vinehout-Nov. 2014: "The Texan ‘Deer Czar’ James Kroll the DNR’s the new rules change the “season framework, management units, and antlerless deer hunting permits.' Gone are “management zones” setting deer overwinter population goals, gone are free tags & $2 tags in highly populated or CWD areas; gone are landowner deer tags, gone is registering your deer at the local bar or convenience store.

Hunters tell me: change the rules, make it hard to get public tags, expensive to hunt in private land and leave folks on their own to register a deer? Isn’t this asking for trouble?"
The response to the comment above?
Anon: Mark Bye nailed it. All those rural white male voters that voted for Walker are getting what they voted for. They just never cared to understand what they were voting for. Time to let the chickens come home to roost.

Mark Bye: Hell, I don't hunt and even *I* get it.

Steve Hanson: I'm not a hunter, but I own property on which others hunt. I have to admit to being TOTALLY bamboozled by how complex the new rules are. And the folks hunting here are just as bewildered. 
Deer hunters left the sport in droves after chronic wasting disease spread through Wisconsin like a California wildfire. Wisconsin State Journal Nov, 2015:
Fear of eating CWD-tainted venison initially scared many hunters and made owners of hunting land in southern Wisconsin concerned that their property would lose value if the hunt died off, said Jeff Schinkten, national president of Whitetails Unlimited.
But instead of fighting the disease like neighboring states, Scott Walker hired a Deer Czar who couldn’t wait to play down the threat with massive defunding and anti-science opinions.

Fast forward to now. Guess what?
JS: Hunters registered 195,738 deer for the 2017 Wisconsin gun deer season, down about 1% from 2016 and the second-lowest total in 35 years, according to preliminary data released Tuesday by the Department of Natural Resources.

Hunter participation also was down. The agency sold 588,387 gun licenses, a drop of 10,420 from 2016 and the lowest in 41 years.

It was just the second time since 1976 that fewer than 600,000 licenses were sold for the nine-day season.
Here's the latest on the problem with CWD, from WPT's Here and Now:

With deer hunting season underway, Ron Seely, a freelance journalist and lecturer at UW-Madison, discusses the issues arising from Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD). According to Seely, new research shows that the diseased can linger in soil. Over the years, DNR-led efforts to monitor and manage CWD have seen a dramatic decline in testing, and have yet to provide a clear picture of how prevalent the disease is overall. Yet even limited data points to a growing problem — as the state tests fewer deer over time, it finds more and more animals infected with this always fatal disease. At the same time, evidence is mounting that CWD, caused by infectious proteins called prions, could jump the species barrier to humans.
Gaming the System? You bet, and it looks like a few deer hunting mentors attributed deer kills to babies and kids under 5:
On the heels of a law change that eliminated the state's minimum hunting age, 10 Wisconsin hunting licenses were sold this month to children under the age of 1, according to data released Tuesday (Nov. 28) by the Department of Natural Resources.

It's not known whether any of the infants actually participated in any way in the hunt ... they could have been used to register a deer killed by another hunter. The low-priced, first-time mentored hunting licenses carry all the harvest authorizations of a similar adult license. One deer was registered to a 4-year-old hunter, and seven deer were registered to 5-year-olds, according to DNR records The harvest records don't indicate who killed the deer.

In all, 52 hunting licenses were purchased this month for hunters ages 5 and under, according to the DNR.

The College Envy, Resentment and Anti-Education Agenda.

1. Please, please stop the bullshit!!! Who really says this, and what "establishment?"
“The establishment has created this thing that if you don’t go to college, you’re somehow not equal to someone else who did,” says Frank Antenori, a former GOP Arizona state legislator and 2016 Trump delegate to the Republican National Convention.
No one on, especially on the "liberal left" has ever said that. Another manufactured villain Republicans have created to make their draconian plan look better, and to scare their voters.

2. Please, please stop the bullshit!!! Does this sound anything like college today?
Donald Trump Jr. recently excoriated universities in Texas, for which he was paid $100,000: "Hate speech is anything that says America is a good country. That our founders were great people. That we need borders. Hate speech is anything faithful to the moral teachings of the Bible.”

"(Many universities) take $200,000 of your money; in exchange, we’ll train your children to hate our country. . . . We’ll make them unemployable by teaching them courses in zombie studies, underwater basket weaving and, my personal favorite, tree climbing.”
3. Republicans Hate College: So is it any wonder most Republican voters sneer at being educated:
In July, a Pew Research Center study found that 58 percent of Republicans and GOP-leaning independents believe colleges and universities have a negative effect “on the way things are going in the country,” up from 37 percent two years ago. Democrats...72 percent said they have a positive impact. Other studies show overwhelming numbers of white working-class men do not believe a college degree is worth the cost.
4. Not worth the Cost? Republicans don't believe spending $30 billion a year on Pell grants is worth it since half of these students drop out.
More than 44 million Americans are paying off student loans ... average student loan debt of a 2016 college graduate was $37,000. At $1.4 trillion, U.S. student loan debt is now larger than credit card debt.
Getting back to Frank Antenori, the former GOP Arizona state legislator, he thinks taxpayers "should help pay only for degrees, such as those in engineering, medicine or law, that lead directly to jobs ... 
"...(not a) junky” (degree in) “diversity studies or culture studies. You want to create someone who’s going to be a contributor, not a moocher. Go out and generate revenue; that’s what it’s all about.”
There's a liberal take on college education; Steve Farley, a Democratic state senator who is running for governor who used to spar regularly with Antenori: 
“That is a basic ethical and moral flaw in this whole argument, that everything’s got to have financial payback so we can reduce taxes for the Koch brothers. This whole idea that government should be run more like a business is so profoundly morally flawed. Government should be run like a family. We should not be manufacturing them (students) to be products to be consumed."

Noting the growing amount of money on campuses from conservative donors ... "We choose to give our money away in corporate tax cuts and corporate sales tax loopholes. It’s my crusade to get rid of those loopholes and fund our public education system at every level. The whole liberal bastion idea is just absurd.” 
So while Republicans are creating villains to make their bad policies more acceptable, they're missing out on what's really happening, as businesses step forward to help non-college bound students succeed:
Minnesota StarTribune: Companies invest in high schools across state to boost vocational, engineering, other high-demand work: A looming labor shortage, along with a growing urgency to address Minnesota's unyielding racial achievement gap, is prompting sweeping changes in the way businesses participate in hands-on learning.

The focus is no longer just on students who might be better suited to community college and the trades. Across the state, corporations are donating thousands of dollars as well as their employees’ time to teach students how to do such things as draw architect’s plans, make replacement parts with 3-D printers, write computer code, create marketing campaigns and learn basic nursing skills.

Companies such as Polaris, Medtronic and Ergotron are helping to develop curricula at Wayzata High School and are working side-by-side with juniors and seniors through the school’s Compass program. Students take an online skills assessment and can select one of four career fields — business management and entrepreneurship; arts and global communications; health sciences; and design, engineering and manufacturing technologies. More than just subject matter, the courses promote teamwork, interpersonal communication and other problem-solving skills needed to be successful in the business world.
Republicans haven't progressed any further than the mid 20th century when untrained high school graduates or dropouts could make a decent living and raise a family. Not true anymore. Even some Republicans are pushing early training in high schools and tech colleges, which means, "if you don’t go to college, you’re somehow not equal to someone else who did” is absolute bullshit and they know it. Can't have it both ways.

Note: The flawed Republican plan for public school is getting rid of most everything else for job training. That's not a long-term strategy for students who will end up having 2, 3, or 4 different professions in their lifetime.

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Rotting Road Kill litter highways, Dept. of Transportation claims program to remove Deer carcasses is "working?"

Despite longtime rotting deer carcasses littering out state roads, the program to pick them up is "working," according to the Transportation Department.
Some vehicle-struck deer aren't getting removed from Wisconsin highways as quickly as they're being run down, as officials adjust to a new carcass pickup system. Transportation spokeswoman Becky Kikkert says contracted vendors are supposed to remove deer carcasses within two business days of a report. She says the system is working.
No Funding?: The WISC story claims there was a little confusion about what department, DNR or DOT, was responsible for removing dead deer within two days.  
A provision in the state budget transferred responsibility for picking up dead deer from the Department of Natural Resources to the Department of Transportation. The change took effect in September. Some officials said they weren't informed of the switch of responsibility for carcass removal from the DNR to the DOT.
And yet, in my recent post, "Walker now leaving rotting Car-Killed Deer on road sides, and it may get worse," Scott Walker vetoed the actual funding of road kill removal because as he put it, it would take funding away from "other priorities," It's also because he was pissed the legislature for not putting in additional dollars...from god knows where, to do the believe it or not, that's where Walker and the Republican legislature have left it....

This has been Walker's dream for years, a haphazard irresponsible nothing burger, as I reported back in April 2015:
Governor Scott Walker doesn't want the state to pay to remove deer carcasses along state highways, which means counties could have to foot the bill. Last year the DNR removed nearly 24,000 deer carcasses from state highways across Wisconsin.

The Governor's proposed budget eliminates$700,000 a year for the DNR to remove the carcasses statewide. Under the proposal, responsibility for clearing the deer would fall to whatever government agency is in charge of the roadway. Or they may be left uncollected. The nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau cautions, "dead and decaying deer on the roadside are unsightly and can dampen Wisconsin's reputation as a tourist destination."
Here's the WISC report. I loved how "driver" Kimberly Engel couldn't care less about how it looks or what it'll do to Wisconsin's reputation as a tourist destination, not to mention the spread of disease:
Engel: "We live in Wisconsin, there's always road kill somewhere."

The Brutal Death of Net Neutrality...

It all seemed to innocent, based on a few simple common sense principles:
Net neutrality regulations, which ensure all traffic on the internet is treated equally, prevents broadband and wireless providers from blocking or slowing online content.
FCC Chairman Ajit Pai doesn't want to prevent anything, but instead wants to see what happens, taking legal steps only after American consumers are hurt, robbed of their money, or treated unfairly:
Pai: "Today, I have shared with my colleagues a draft order that would abandon this failed approach and return to the longstanding consensus that served consumers well for decades."
Net neutrality failed? Missed that. Pai also wants you to believe that the internet isn't about communicating anymore, turning oversight responsibility over to the Federal Trade Commission:
Pai's is stripping the FCC of its authority to regulate the internet.

Former FCC chairman Tom Wheeler said Pai's proposal "raises hypocrisy to new heights" as the agency abdicates its authority to the FTC. "They are 'protecting consumers' by disavowing responsibility to do just that. They are providing for 'better regulation' by giving authority to the FTC, which has no regulatory authority."
And because net neutrality made the internet a "utility," rates were regulated to prevent providers from pricing consumer out of their only life line for help. Say goodbye to that:
Companies like AT&T and Verizon have argued that as a public utility, (it was) a disincentive to invest in their networks. They say they were less likely to build their networks in hard-to-reach areas like rural regions or to offer faster, more innovative service because they were afraid the government would regulate rates or force them to open the infrastructure to competitors.
Skies the limit, and we'll be paying outrageously high rates for this "freedom:"
Gigi Sohn, a former adviser to Tom Wheeler, the FCC chairman who championed the 2015 rules, said, "In a few short weeks, the big broadband providers will be free to double their prices, extract extra tolls on fast lanes for online businesses, and track and sell their customers' web browsing activity. When they're done, what will remain of consumer protection on the Internet will be nothing more than a carcass."
But FCC Chairman Pai isn't done yet, promising full and transparent disclosures by the only ISP in your area, so you and your attorney can approve or disapprove getting any internet or not. Lots of choices huh? And can they make the legalese and print any smaller?
Small print disclaimer nightmare!
Companies will also be required to disclose any paid priority services they offer and explain how they manage network congestion.
Here's the Republican version of "small government," a blanket law nationwide:
The proposal would also ban states from passing their own versions of the old rules.
Anti-competitive Customer Robbery: FCC Chairman Ajit Pai is quietly encouraging it: 
In February, for example, he ended an investigation into whether ATandT and Verizon used data limits for anti-competitive purposes, effectively ruling that the two companies could exempt their own video services from customers' data caps but still charge for data used by their competitors’ services.
Wacky "Government Controlling Everything" Theory: Lacking any substance, right wing Chicken Little's can always rely on this:
Fox News: "All the nonsense about paid prioritization and Internet fast lanes that would favor some content over others is nothing but fear mongering by consumer groups that want government controlled everything. Net Neutrality is ObamaCare for the Internet."

Washington Post: "Your Internet isn’t getting any faster, but the government might soon call it ‘high-speed’ anyway:" Yup, Pai wants to replace the word "slow" with "fast." It's magic:

That year, the agency revised its minimum definition of broadband to be any service that offered at least 25 Mbps downloads and 3 Mbps uploads. By this definition, the FCC said, 55 million Americans lacked high-speed Internet. Almost overnight, the FCC essentially created a big mission for itself to solve, using all of the policy tools and money at its disposal.

Pai has asked whether it would be appropriate to use a looser standard to define broadband. Specifically, he's asked if it makes sense to use a 10 Mbps down / 1 Mbps up definition. In Pai's view, continually moving the goal posts is counterproductive.

Democrats say reverting to a definition that makes it easier for the FCC to claim it's done its job simply sweeps the problems of affordable access under the rug. Concluding that there's nothing to see here has myriad implications for the average consumer. If there is no problem, there is no need for action.

Washington Post: "FCC net neutrality process ‘corrupted’ by fake comments and vanishing consumer complaints, officials say." This is a huge story. 
“The process the FCC has employed,” wrote New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman this week in a letter to the FCC, “… has been corrupted by the fraudulent use of Americans’ identities” ... more than a million comments, supporting Pai's effort to repeal net neutrality, may have been faked ... the FCC has declined to provide further evidence that could help move the investigation forward, such as data logs and other information.“It’s scary to think that organic, authentic voices in the public debate  are being drowned out by a chorus of spambots,” said Jeff Kao, a data scientist who published a study of the pro-repeal comments Thursday, in a blog post.
The FCC's Response? You won't believe this...
Brian Hart, an FCC spokesman, said the agency lacks the resources to investigate every comment. Supporters of the net neutrality rules are not blameless either, he added, pointing to 7.5 million comments filed in favor of the regulations that appeared to come from 45,000 distinct email addresses, "all generated by a single fake e-mail generator website." Some 400,000 comments backing the rules, he said, appeared to originate from a mailing address based in Russia. "The most suspicious activity has been by those supporting Internet regulation," said Hart.

Jessica Rosenworcel, a Democratic FCC commissioner added that some 50,000 consumer complaints appear to have disappeared from the agency's records. She also highlighted a Government Accountability Office probe into an alleged denial-of-service attack that the FCC claimed prevented consumers from filing submissions on the net neutrality plan.
Keep this list as an "I told you so" reminder:
1. Marketplace WeekendBy keeping the web neutral, these regulations ensure that every site is accessible at the same speed. Netflix can't pay to load faster than Hulu, internet service providers like Spectrum and Verizon can't block specific sites or make subscribers pay more to access them

2. FCC Chairman Ajit Pai said "the federal government will stop micromanaging the internet." 

3. Internet service providers will be raking in the dough without net neutrality ... ISPs can create tiers of service to access different sites and can charge businesses more for faster speeds ... 

4. But it could hurt small businesses. If ISPs can block sites or make them more expensive to maintain ... And that could mean fewer businesses and less competition. Think of Facebook ... it was run entirely out of a college campus. Without net neutrality, it might not have made it new businesses could be iced out in the future.

5. Uncompetitive prices or increased membership costs will hit customers right in their wallets,

6. Wired: INTERNET SERVICE PROVIDERS like Comcast and Verizon may soon be free to block content, slow video-streaming services from rivals, and offer “fast lanes” to preferred partners. When ATT customers access its DirecTV Now video-streaming service, the data doesn’t count against their plan’s data limits. Verizon, likewise, exempts its Go90 service ... T-Mobile allows multiple video and music streaming services to bypass its data limits, essentially allowing it to pick winners and losers in those categories.

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Walker's desperate Deer Hunting revival efforts helping kill time honored sport besides changing times.

Who could blame Scott Walker for desperately trying to create a manufacturing renaissance by spending $3 billion of taxpayer money to bring Foxconn to Wisconsin?

The Walker Authority has been trying to do the same for deer hunting, but without the $3 billion handed out to deer hunters. Well, how about another hairbrained hunting gimmick no one really asked for:
Gov. Scott Walker signed a bill on Nov. 13 eliminating the minimum age for participating in a mentored hunt. According to the data, 1,454 of the mentored hunt licenses authorized children younger than nine to hunt.
So what was the end result?
Hunters killed nearly 14,000 fewer deer during opening weekend of Wisconsin’s nine-day gun deer season this year than last. Hunters registered 102,903 deer from Saturday through Sunday compared with 116,615 deer during opening weekend in 2016. That’s a decrease of 11.8 percent.

The opening weekend buck kill also was down, from 64,828 last year to 59,142 this year.
Unfortunately, our now chaotically understaffed crony filled DNR is giving the impression they're hiding something:
Hunters purchased fewer licenses (about 5,000 less) heading into the opening days of Wisconsin's traditional nine-day gun deer season than last year.  The DNR sold 582,281 licenses down slightly from 587,440 sold through the Sunday of opening weekend in 2016. The DNR ... didn’t offer a specific figure or clarify whether those licenses included archery licenses or licenses for other gun deer seasons.
I personally love the tradition myself, but seriously, when you don't even try to control Chronic Wasting Disease and then have the balls to tell people it's okay to eat venison despite recent scientific data...well, what do you expect? This is "small government" style management, and it doesn't instill a lot of confidence. Not to mention Americans having less time to get away and the competition from video games that let kids accomplish pretty much the same thing over and over without freezing to death.

They've tried every reckless dumbass idea with no success:
Crossbow hunters got an exemption "from a state law that prohibits hunting within 1,700 feet of a school or hospital." To sell his idea, Kleefisch renamed his crossbow hunting "Assembly Bill 8" to the "Deer Collision Reduction Act."
Don't laugh, that new name may have helped the bill become law. But that wasn't the only effort...
Teenagers could learn in school how to safely handle firearms under a bill introduced last week by Republican lawmakers ... as an elective.
Why? Gun indoctrination and gun industry profits...:
The bill was created with help from trap club coaches and officials overseeing state clay target programs and gun club owners.
Is this a Gun Marketing Plan Targeting Kids, or a sports hunting revival? 
Rep. Joel Kleefisch said... the elective course would teach students about the different types of firearms and how they work, how to safely carry and transport firearms and how to engage a safety lock on firearms, among other skills. “The use of a firearm comes with a massive responsibility. In a state where firearms are part of our heritage, entertainment, sustenance...The bottom line is guns are an integral part of Wisconsin society." 

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Thankful and Bitter...

Walker denies Tony Evers his own Legal Representation in Challenge to Superintendent Powers!!!

Candidate for governor and State Superintendent Tony Evers can't get legal representation advocating on his behalf in a lawsuit challenging his elected office's powers, thanks to Scott Walker and AG Brad Schimel. 

Under the Iron Fist of One Party Scott Walker Control:
JSThe state’s top two Republicans won’t let Wisconsin’s Democratic schools chief Tony Evers have his own attorney in a lawsuit over his powers. 
You get that? And this is something "small government" left behind Republicans voters thinks is "small government?"

With friends like these...wait, stuff like this can't happen, right?
Attorney General Brad Schimel told the state Supreme Court his office would represent schools Superintendent Tony Evers, even though Schimel agrees with those suing Evers. The development came soon after Gov. Scott Walker blocked Evers from hiring an outside attorney. Evers then tried to use the chief legal counsel in his Department of Public Instruction, but Schimel told the state’s high court he was pushing that attorney aside. 

In an interview, Evers said Walker and Schimel were engaging in petty politics and trying to prevent him from getting his say in court. “It’s unprecedented I would think that a constitutional officer would not be able to have his or her own interests represented in a court of law. It’s like a kangaroo court without a court.” Evers said he would file a request soon asking the state Supreme Court to let him use an attorney of his choosing. He'll also be asking the court to throw the case out, he said. 
Oh, but it gets even more dictatorially bizarre: 
Walker spokesman Tom Evenson said by email that the attorney general has the power to decide what arguments to make that are best for the state — and not what's best for Evers. "It’s not politics, it’s the law."
The lawsuit mill decided to crank out the same lawsuit as before, now that the court has a new Justice:
The lawsuit, brought by the conservative Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty, centers on the powers of Evers ... last year ruled Evers had more power and independence than other the heads of other state agencies. Evers' department issued rules this fall without first going to the Department of Administration. That's because a divided state Supreme Court ruled last year that Evers did not have to abide by a similar law governing administrative rules because he is an independently elected official under the state constitution.

The group argues the Department of Public Instruction is ignoring a new law which took effect in September, that says state agencies must run the scope of state rules past Walker's Department of Administration before putting them into place.
Again, this is raw authoritarian behavior that hell, I can't believe is happening: 
On Wednesday, Solicitor General Misha Tseytlin notified the Supreme Court that he — not Nilsestuen — would represent Evers. Tseytlin is a top aide to Schimel. A spokesman for Schimel did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Rick Esenberg, the executive director of WILL, said he would leave it to others to weigh in on how the attorney general handles cases.

Sen. Stroebel says Pollutant list Too Long, so Eliminate all State Air Pollutant Standards...

Proving that he might be the dumbest guy ever to have a seat in the state legislature, Sen. Duey Stroebel says get rid of state air pollution standards and then, start completely over. Don't review each standard, debate its merits, and then decide after all the experts have weighed in. Who would do that? 

Republican voters own this guy. Kinda makes a previous blog post title even more terrifying:

Walker has turned Wisconsin into the environmental trash heap of the Midwest!!!

WHA: Assembly lawmakers met Tuesday for a public hearing on a bill that would eliminate all of the state Department of Natural Resource’s rules for air quality. The DNR would have the option to reintroduce those regulations.

States regulate pollutants that may not be problems nationwide, but can harm health or the environment regionally, such as ammonia from food processing and chlorine dioxide from paper mills in Wisconsin, said Tyson Cook of Clean Wisconsin, which mapped pollution sources that would no longer be regulated under the proposal.

In 2014, lawmakers voted to delay for up to 20 years the full rollout of Doyle-era regulations to limit how much phosphorus could be released into waterways.
After all, the pollutants list is just too darn long...yup, that's the reason alright:
Sen. Duey Stroebel, R-Saukville cited a 2004 report from the Legislature’s nonpartisan audit bureau that said the state regulates 293 more pollutants than required by federal law. Of those, the audit found 94 of the 293 were reported in Wisconsin in 2002.
And because pollutants improve over time, becoming less dangerous chemically:
Any of the regulations approved by the Legislature would expire and be eligible for renewal every 10 years.
 Take it from Stroebel's special interest supporters and campaign contributors...
Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce, the American Petroleum Institute and the Wisconsin Paper Council support the bill.
Democratic Rep. Jimmy Anderson argued the proposal would create unnecessary work for the DNR.
"It seems that we’re sweeping away the entirety of the regulations that are above the federal level and asking the DNR to re-do the work." 
You think? 

Here's what has been rolled back since Scott Walker took office:
1. Moved to reduce the role of science in environmental policymaking and to silence discussion of controversial subjects, including climate change, by state employees.

2. A series of controversial rollbacks in environmental protection, including relaxing laws governing iron mining and building on wetlands, in both cases to help specific companies avoid regulatory roadblocks.

3. Loosened restrictions on phosphorus pollution in state waterways, tried to restrict wind energy development.

4. Walker has targeted the science and educational corps at the state’s Department of Natural Resources (DNR), eliminated a third of the DNR’s 58 scientist positions and 60 percent of its 18 environmental educator positions.

5. WPR: Wisconsin residents can no longer challenge state Department of Natural Resources permits for a high-capacity well if state officials failed to look at what the well might do to overall groundwater in the area. Republican lawmakers and Gov. Scott Walker got rid of the cumulative impacts challenge when they passed the state budget a year ago.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Those Free Market Private Hospitals...Milwaukee has the most Expensive in Nation!!!

So how will the free market effect health care? We've been told by Republicans that competition will bring prices down. Well, no, there's no guarantee and it's not a true statement. Check this out. WHA:
A recent report by San Francisco company Amino ranked Milwaukee first for the most expensive hospitals in the United States among cities with 1 million or more residents.

The analysis by Amino found wide variation in prices among hospitals across the country and in Milwaukee. According to Vivero, there's "about (a) 163 percent difference for the same (billing) code, same services from facility to facility. And these can make substantial differences for people — in fact (they) can be the difference between being in debt or bankruptcy or not for consumers who are dealing with deductibles that are far higher than the savings they have in the bank."
Complicated Private Health Insurance: All of this makes knowing what the hell is in your health insurance plan impossible, and who can keep up with that, and then research whether the hospital isn’t going to bankrupt your family. Republicans seem to think we have all the time in the world to figure out how to spend our hard earned money, but still get ripped off:
"It’s not about going to the cheapest provider of care," said Vivero. "It’s about understanding, for a consumer, (what hospital) is in network," and also provides high-quality care.
The TrumpCare plan wants people to form or join larger groups to get a group discount rate. Well, how did that work out:
Southeast Wisconsin has long had a reputation for high health care prices, something business leaders have tried to control since 2003 when they formed the Business Health Care Group.
Nope, that didn’t work. The free market system is unpredictable and complicated (“nobody knew that healthcare could be so complicated”). So many variables that it can’t be controlled, especially when mergers consolidate power and higher prices:
Southeast Wisconsin’s historically high health care costs are due in part to an older population and little competition among providers.

"Part of it has been that they’ve been able to charge what the market will bear because it's a moderately concentrated market," said independent health care market analyst Allan Baumgarten. "It’s become more concentrated in the last couple of years. Part of it is you have certain systems, I would say specifically Aurora, which are regarded by many employers as 'must have' providers in a network because they are the (doctors) your employees want to see."

Turning Point USA Sucks...You PC Bro?

Right wing losers, the kind who text pictures instead of their thoughts, are jumping on board Turning Point USA's simpleton messages; "Socialism Sucks," "You PC Bro," and "Big Gov Sucks." It's a group that skirts the line between parody and mind-numbingly disproved right-wing cliches.

It's pretty obvious Turning Point USA doesn't really have anything to contribute to the dialog or goals of educators at our state college campuses, yet they've just become "an official student organization on the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point campus. Thanks to loud organized whining.

Before I get to why something this idiotic happened, take a look at one of their big issues, socialism. They've taken the many different historical versions of socialism and conveniently condensed them into one slogan:

Fascinating? And this adds to the "marketplace of ideas?"
The UW-Stevens Point College Republicans issued a statement "The student government of UW-Stevens Point should be held accountable for their blatant disregard for freedom of speech and the free marketplace of ideas on campus."
Let's have a Civil Discussion in the "free marketplace of ideas?" Nothing says civil like "crush socialism" and "100 million dead." These are the thoughtful words of founder Charlie Kirk:

According to "Knowyourmeme," Kirk is responsible for trying to ban and intimidate anyone who
disagrees with his "Socialism Sucks" movement:
Turning Point USA is a non-profit political outreach and activist organization focused on conservative and right-wing causes. The company and its founder, Charlie Kirk, have been at the center of numerous controversies, including The Professor Watchlist.
Liberal professors are on notice regarding their own free speech rights...
“The mission of Professor Watchlist is to expose and document college professors who discriminate against conservative students and advance leftist propaganda in the classroom.”
Because right wing ideas, cliches and slogans could never be propaganda. Here's Kirk taking on those infuriating "safe spaces" on campus, an idea someone shouldn't have been free to create:

But that's not all, Charlie Kirk's contribution to higher education also includes the following list of topics he would outright change for everyone:

Free Speech, Nope: In Nebraska, Turning Point USA got "free speaking" university staff fired. It really has everything to do with right-wing political correctness.

Turning Point USA's campus presence is a bit ironic, since they promote anti-education rants like this from PragerU...

What is PragerU? I'm not sure but they teach "values" "with the intellectual ammunition" you'll need to "crush" socialists...
PragerU, founded by Dennis Prager in 2011, is a not-for-profit organization that helps millions understand the values that shaped America and provides millions of Americans and people around the world with the intellectual ammunition they need to advocate for limited government, individual responsibility and economic freedom.
Anyone remember seeing limited government/economic freedom loving Turning Point USA protest the Scott Walker Foxconn deal? Me neither.

What really got me going was this poster supposedly pushing free markets and capitalism. Turning Point USA must not understand how health care insurance works; you pay a premium, it gets added to everyone else's payment, gets paid out to the sick and in the form of wages and company profits. Yes, bring them on campus...?

Here's Charlie Kirk droning on with his simplistic stale talking points, followed by a YouTube comment that "dismantles" Kirk's premise:

Social Capital3 months ago (edited): Two can play this game: Do you trust big business? Then why do you want to make it bigger? If you don't like monopolies and don't trust cronies, then why would you want to give more money and power to those same companies that stifle competition and small business growth? "But what about corporate welfare"? 9/10 conservative politicians are more interested in cutting welfare programs for the poor than they are for the rich. In English: This "small government" rap is a ruse. Conservative politicians have been some of the biggest advocates for big government and big business in our nation's history.

Monday, November 20, 2017

Paul Ryan's Tax Cut Tales: "The Story of Cindy"

Thank you twitter...

CWD Deer Hunting Season off to a Great up.

Hunter beware, buyer beware...hell, beware of life in general because public safety is no longer the intrusive governments responsibility. Man-up!

Deer hunting season is here, as hunters march out into our endangered wilderness with CWD infected deer. Don't worry, we don't think human ingestion of CWD infected venison will kill you.

Hunter Beware: What you don't know will Kill You: In the "bad is good" Bizarro World of Republican politics, who cares about the spread of brain killing prions:
The country's prion disease surveillance center that looks for new brain disorders potentially caused by eating meat from infected animals, would lose all of its federal funding and cease operations under President Donald Trump's proposed fiscal 2018 budget.

The disease is in the same family as chronic wasting disease (CWD), which is endemic in Wisconsin's deer herd. The loss in funding would come at a time of heightened concern over whether chronic wasting disease can infect people. Recent research showed that it could infect monkeys that were fed venison from infected deer. At the same time, the number of Creutzfeldt-Jakob cases has jumped substantially nationally and especially in Wisconsin, where chronic wasting disease has now been identified in wild deer in 18 counties. 

Seriously, Republicans are counting on their surreal efforts to popularize hunting by distracting hunters away from the dangers of feeding CWD infected venison to their entire family. Anyone aware of the warnings...nope. If they really wanted to bring deer hunting back, get rid of CWD? Doh! Now even kids can hunt sick deer:
The disease is a transmissible spongiform encephalopathy, a family that includes scrapie as well as mad cow disease and Creutzfeldt-Jakob (both of which are fatal to humans) … health experts, including at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, have long issued strong advice against eating venison from CWD-positive animals. "Venison from deer harvested inside the CWD Management Zone should not be consumed or distributed to others until CWD test results on the sources deer are known to be negative."
Scott Walker again, Missing in Action: Like the prisons and veterans home debacle, Walker won't participate in, or allow a photo op, tying him to the real festering problems eating away at our state that only government can improve. 
Chronic wasting disease has arrived in Wisconsin's deer factory. State officials announced two CWD-positive white-tailed deer were found at a Waupaca County shooting preserve. The two CWD-positive bucks represented the first findings of the fatal deer disease in the central Wisconsin deer hunting hotbed.

Worse yet, the state agency with authority over captive cervid facilities - the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection - isn't doing anything to snuff it out ... it appears the DNR has lost its will to combat CWD. And the state's agriculture and consumer protection agency has clearly sided with the business interests in the deer farming industry.

"I've been dreading this day," said Todd Schill, 55, of Waupaca who has deer hunted in the county for 40 years. "I didn't buy hunting land here to be next to CWD."
Welcome to "small government" deregulation. Again, maybe stopping CWD will bring hunting back: 
Jan. 4th, 2017: Notably, hunter participation also was down. The agency sold 598,867 gun licenses, a 40-year low and the first time the number has dipped below 600,000 since 1976. Hunters registered 196,785 deer during the 2016 Wisconsin gun deer season, the lowest total in 34 years. A longer term solution may involve looking beyond user fees ... (fees have the) potential to harm state efforts aimed at reversing a decline in hunting ... The DNR outlined other alternatives that include cuts to wildlife and fish-stocking programs and new efforts to attract more people to hunting and fishing.
Voluntary testing is available...voluntary, what could go wrong there?

Guys with Guns, what could go Wrong? While Republicans remove any kind of firearm training, responsible gun owners are rising to the challenge, it's just going to take going through a few growing pains first.

Good responsible gun owners don't need no training, they're the real Americans, carrying on the hunting tradition...let's see now, day 1...
Three hunters shot and wounded themselves Saturday. A 49-year-old man shot himself in the right ankle. A 51-year-old man in Shawano County shot himself in the leg when he bent over and his holstered handgun fired. And in Forest County, a 49-year-old Crandon man was sitting in the cab of his truck when he saw a deer around 9 a.m. When he attempted to move his rifle, it went off, sending a bullet through his legs and the truck’s seat and door.

Saturday, November 18, 2017

The Verdict on GOP Tax Cuts....enjoy increase Federal Debt.

Here are few comments about the House-passed tax cut passage Paul Ryan is so happy about.

Bruce Bartlett is not just a historian but an expert on supply-side economics. Here's what he thinks about the GOP tax true:
Bartlett: "They (GOP) want to tie the deficit around the Democrats necks, and make them vote for very unpopular deficit reduction legislation...when the deficits are caused by the Republicans."

As usual, Ezra Klein cuts to the GOP "tax cut for the middle-class BS, and confirms, there is no such thing as "good old fashions deficit hawks." It's myth Republicans like to bring out whenever Democrats are in office:

Exploding the deficit: Take it from Forbes Magazine's Stan Collender, predicts a permanent annual deficit of about $1 trillion:

Do CEO's think they're going to reinvest in their corporations with the tax savings?

Scott Walker the Divider and Thief.

Giving credit where credit is due, Paul Fanlund, editor and executive publisher of The Capital Times, showed us how Scott Walker gained success by dividing and turning neighbor against neighbor for power:
Years before Donald Trump, Scott Walker was already dividing us: Max Boot in Foreign Policy magazine and was headlined: “America will survive Trump, but it won’t ever be the same.” Boot’s money quote: “What most troubles me about Trump’s presidency is the extent to which he is dividing Americans … in service to his own political ambitions.”

That also precisely describes Scott Walker. Indeed, Wisconsin’s governor had a six-year head start on Trump in the art of prevailing by dividing.
In the Bizarro State of Wisconsin, Walker's divisive agenda really means bring us together; From my own research, here are a few other points I'd like to add to Fanlund's piece: 
1. Walker: "We need to change the tone in America from chants and rallies that fixate on racial division. Instead of focusing on what divides us, we need to concentrate on what brings us together." 

2. On Aug. 21, Walker was asked if he would meet with representatives of the Black Lives Matter movement, and he answered: "Who knows who that is? I meet with voters. Who knows who that is. That is a ridiculous question. I'm going to talk to voters. It's a ridiculous question." 
Because members of Black Lives Matter aren't voters, don't deserve representation?

Let's not ignore the actual numbers...facts!
The partisan gap over Walker in Wisconsin was the largest for any governor in any state where exit polls were conducted last month. And it was the biggest partisan divide in any race for governor or U.S. Senator in Wisconsin on record, based on exit polls dating back more than a quarter-century.

Over that time span, partisan loyalty in Wisconsin has become almost universal in contests for major office among voters who identify with a major party. And “crossover” voting (Republicans voting for Democrats and vice versa) has all but disappeared. 
Democrats controlled by Washington's Big Government Bureaucrats? No, no, no! A favorite Walker line claims Democrats owe everything to Washington bureaucrats, the shadowy evil that must be feared. Check out Democratic Rep. Gordon Hintz, the new Democratic Majority leader's comments from 2015, where he passionately exposes that blatant lie. Who's controlled again?

Walker also said this: "...message that says in America we believe in the people and not in the government." In the articles comment section, one reader had this reply: "So the career politician tells us not to believe in him. Message accomplished."

Bizarro World Walker thinks "fighting" is good, a way to bring us together: 
Harwood: "When you talk about fighting and winning, sometimes when I hear that, it sounds to me like the emphasis is on the fighting, almost like you're running to be the hockey team enforcer."

Walker: "Well I think right now people do want to fight in America. I think people want a fighter who can win, get the results. I fought, I won, I got results, and I did it without violating my conservative principles."

Letting Festering Racial Tensions Build is Scott Walker's Way: Nothing says dangerous disconnect more than ignoring what divides this country...because that will only bring us together:
Huffington Post-Don't Focus On 'Racial Discord' Or You'll Only Create More: "If we focus on unity we’re going to get more of that. The families of the massacre in Charleston showed us the way. I think it’s a prime example if we focus on things that unite us, ways to share the American dream."

Destroying their Democratic Enemies, by electing Pedophiles and Liars: 
Dane County Executive Joe Parisi (said), "I think (Wisconsin Republicans) made a deliberate decision that their main goal, despite the stated goal of creating jobs, was to destroy their enemies."
Which again brings me to MSNBC's Joy Reid's commentary. I've believed this for years, but it's also reflected in rural Republicans voters frustration and feelings of being left out. No kidding, that's because they're politicians haven't served them well, ignoring their communities under the guise of small government. "We won" made it even clearer, whether pedophiles or liars, it didn't matter, anything but a Democrat: