Friday, July 31, 2020

The Dystopian future is here in Wisconsin, as Republicans fight to infect public.

Gov. Evers is not closing businesses down. And wearing a mask while shopping does not hurt businesses. 

What am I missing here?

But "the sky is falling" Republicans are saying just that, apparently too lazy to update their previous BS warnings when business were closed down to slow the pandemic. 

Oust Evers in 2022 Campaign, Already?: What's this really all about? Never taking responsibility for doing absolutely nothing, blaming Evers for everything. Yup, they even said so.
"We must resolve that we need a new governor in 2022. One who actually cares about Wisconsin and who is capable of leading with truth."-Rep. Allen (R-Waukesha)
The first big mistake was to take the small "reopen" protesters seriously. A public health crisis is not the
Is this next...?
same as a political power grab or tyranny? And that's why the governor can order safety measures during a pandemic. How hard is this? 

Secondly, Evers did not appoint the latest State Supreme Court Justice, the voters did. The fact is, voters rejected Scott Walker's appointed Justice. It's crazy, but Republicans are accusing Evers of using the Supreme Court, when the legislature has been doing that ever since Evers took office, using the Institute of Law and Liberty as a secondary partner to get conservative activist Justices to legislate from the bench. 

Third, Democrats did not create the COVID-19 pandemic, or do this to wreak havoc. 

Fourth and most ridiculous, Democrats want to "devastate our economy"? If that makes any kind of sense... 

By doing nothing and relying on "voluntary" rules...does this look like it's working to you?

Sen. Scott Fitzgerald's dog whistle term "liberal groups," which is a reference to Jews, portrayed Democrats as, get this, arch villain's for trying to prevent the spread of a deadly virus and protect kids from being forced to go to in-class schools this fall. Pure evil:  
"The Governor has caved to the pressure of liberal groups on this. How can we trust that he won’t cave again and stop schools that choose in-person instruction this fall?" Fitzgerald said in a prepared statement.
Historical Documentation; The Republican's Irresponsible Reaction and Inability to Solve Problems: Here's a sample of hyperbolic rants, fantasy's, bullshit, and condescension to their constituents. Everyone one of these children should be thrown out of office.

First up, a guy who's own county residents are jamming up Covid-19 testing sites:
Rep. Allen (R-Waukesha) regarding Gov. Evers Mask Mandate: Governor Evers continues to treat Wisconsin residents like children unable to make prudent decisions on their own … and prey on people’s fears … he is really doing is manipulating science to disrupt and devastate our economy while deceiving people into believing that government is their protector. This is an assault on science and an insult of the intelligence of the people of Wisconsin. The governor’s actions earlier this year nearly destroyed our economy and has wrought havoc in the lives of thousands of Wisconsinites … His nanny-state leadership has caused many businesses to close permanently.

Representative Barbara Dittrich (R – Oconomowoc) issued the following statement about just wearing a mask, no closures: 

At a time where hospitalizations and deaths as a percentage of overall cases have decreased (see above graph) and a highly partisan State Supreme Court Justice was just installed to the bench, I must question the motives behind governor’s order. “The governor owns all of the results of this order. Negative health consequences, harm to business, a continued increase in mental health and drug crises, challenges with special needs students receiving appropriate educational accommodations, and other such outcomes fall squarely at the feet of Tony Evers.”

Rep. Gundrum's response, remembering how the safely gerrymandered Republican legislature removed over 150 local laws because a patchwork of regulations was too confusing for people moving from place to the next:
I have always, and will continue to support local governments and their efforts to doing what is best for their communities as opposed to the Evers’ one-size-fits-all approach. I do not support this mandate. 
Senator Howard Marklein (R-Spring Green) issued the dumbest and most ironic statement:
"Someone in Madison should not be making decisions for residents in rural Wisconsin." Think about that. What an idiot.  
Waukesha County Executive Paul Farrow just made things worse, encouraging more rabid in-store confrontations because local officials won't back up mask mandates:
 "A government mandate will create many more issues that will only make it more difficult to respond to the pandemic. Private businesses should have the flexibility to implement their own rules on mask usage in their establishments, it should not be their role to enforce government orders." 
Waukesha residents are much smarter and more concerned than Farrow. Notice in the video below how Farrow "hopes" people wear masks, and "hopes" people self quarantine. This is governing a pandemic? This is an acceptable standard during a public health crisis? FOX 6:

Sen. Scott Fitzgerald's response is so breathtakingly irresponsible, I saved it for last, with my commentary included:
“Masks are fine, but we don’t need statewide mandates telling us what to do." Still battling those childhood disciplinary issues?  

"Municipalities have been making the decisions themselves on what best fits their regions." Oh wait, those decisions are being challenged in court too.

“Good luck enforcing this without local support. Certainly, the last thing our police need to be doing right now is serving as part of the mask patrol." You read that right, the leader of the State Senate just told law enforcement to back off. Yup, we need police reform too. 

One final thought. Considering the standard set for the use of deadly force by armed citizens, could that now include the threat of a deadly infection by unmasked and angry "freedom" fighter spewing in your face? We'll have to wait and see.  

Friday, July 24, 2020

Wednesday, July 22, 2020

GOP Majority Leader Steineke on NOT providing UC to Wisconsinites: It "would only serve to expand eligibility to an already strained system." Yes!

Republicans don't seem too worried about losing their jobs by an angry electorate over their incompetence and inaction on the now out-of-control rise in Covid-19 cases: "On Tuesday, DHS reported a single-day increase of 1,117. A death toll increase of 13 over Monday."

We're now in the "uncontrolled spread" category.
Also, safely gerrymandered Republicans aren't concerned about the backlog of desperate Wisconsinites trying to finally get their unemployment checks. Like everything else, leaders Fitzgerald and Vos aren't interested in Gov. Evers proposed changes to speed UC processing up, because the maze they came up with is doing just what it was supposed to do; make it difficult.

Take this breathtakingly twisted admission by Republican Rep. Jim Steineke that while the backlog is now Gov. Evers fault, giving more people really the problem. You can't make this stuff up:
Assembly Majority Leader Jim Steineke said in a statement. “The tired proposals trotted out today would only serve to expand eligibility to an already strained system and fuel the flames of the problem at hand.”
Yes, he actually said that out loud. I hope that's clear now.

Scott Walker's purely partisan agenda was part of a nationwide GOP effort to punish the unemployed and force them to work for less. But the pandemic exposed that cruelty (Listen to the NPR Marketplace audio below):
Wisconsin’s unemployment insurance woes are part of a national trend, according to experts and media reports.

“Systems have been over-calibrated to prevent overpayments at the expense of paying appropriate benefits. States have programmed their computer systems to pause applications at every decision point, which can generate multiple eligibility determinations and denials,” Michele Evermore, senior policy analyst with the unemployment law group, testified this month to the U.S. Senate Committee on Finance. “As we have seen, that is going to slow down benefits getting to the public when there is a crisis.”

A 2014 state audit found that DWD call centers automatically blocked 80% of calls during times of high volume. 

Additionally, Walker signed a lame-duck law just before Evers took office that restricts the governor’s ability to waive certain requirements for state-federal benefits programs including unemployment insurance. And Wisconsin’s $370 a week maximum benefit is among the most miserly in the United States, ranking 40th

Speaking of Scott Walker...on WKOW's Capitol City Sunday, Emilee Fannon interviewed our seriously uninformed former governor Scott Walker, who hid his incompetence with repetitive memorized slogans and limited media access.

Remember Steineke's comment above, how it would "...only serve to expand eligibility to an already strained system," yes, that's what were trying to do! Urrghhhh!  

Walker, like he always does, focused on just one thing that he probably rehearsed a thousand times at home on, his claim that not enough people are processing claims. He wasn't about to take any responsibility for making it harder, and certainly didn't regret never updating the system when the state had surplus money to fix the phone system:
When pressed on whether he would encourage his GOP colleagues to accept changes to the laws he said lawmakers could, but reiterated it’s not a solution to the backlog.
“Making changes is fine, but that’s not the hang-up. You need more state government employees to process these claims.” 

Special note: After I tweeted a criticism of Fannon's interviewing powers, she came back strong in this interview. That's how it's done!

Republicans, who were once outraged they were left out of solving the pandemic shutdown, are now ignoring the sudden spike in cases and deaths, with no plans to deal with the predicted spread. 

I just found this Neil Covuto's show interview with Walker, were he said politician had to come up with a can't hide from this one Scott.

Scott Walker says there has to be a balance: Anyone see one now? Walker insists there has to be a "balance" where there is none, and back-to-work must happen now...but slowly? 

Here's more from a May 2019 post:

Making Unemployment Insurance Impossible to Get or Keep: Walker did everything he could to discourage and drop workers from their unemployment benefits. Other states went even further. Here's public radio's Marketplace report exposing the scheme to lower unemployment numbers, something Scott Walker exploited:

Here's are a few changes Walker put in place that are now being targeted by Gov. Evers for elimination or change:
1. One-week waiting period to qualify for unemployment benefits. 

2. A provision that makes people ineligible for benefits if fired for what the law defines as “substantial fault,” or failure to conform to a “reasonable” employer job policy ... recent court cases found it was improperly used to deny unemployment benefits to eligible applicants. 

3. The administration has authority to define the types of job offers a person can reject and remain eligible for benefits.

4. Eliminating requirements adopted in 2015 that applicants submit to drug testing to receive jobless benefits. The most sweeping of those requirements has not yet taken effect due to federal delays.

5. If someone has more than one job and quits one of them, they are now ineligible to collect unemployment for the next year if they’re laid off from another job.
The changes were part of a scheme to cut business contributions into the insurance program and artificially make the numbers lower to look like we didn't have a problem in the eyes of the federal government. It worked too. Here's a link to Wisconsin efforts and other state's cuts to unemployment eligibility.

With a minimum wage of $7.25 and tough unemployment insurance requirements that include work requirements and drug testing for food and housing benefits, is it any surprise Wisconsin has a labor shortage and out migration problem. 

Saturday, July 18, 2020

Devoid of Issues, Republican's seek to end "liberals," hoping to crush their Enemy neighbors!

Not solving Wisconsin's, or even America's social and economic problems, sure beats working. The Republican convention message couldn't be clearer.

Weird Freedom and Liberty Tantrum: For example, on Parler, AZ Rep. Andy Biggs posted:
"Nothing typifies this path to totalitarianism more fully than gov't mandates to wear a mask." (note: Arizona had 2,742 new cases, and 147 new deaths from the previous day.)
I commented: "True, only if there was never a pandemic and then you were ordered to wear masks, because masks are kind of silly without a health crisis, right?"

But that's really the issue isn't it, conflating tyrannical edicts with preventive "orders" to fight a contagious airborne virus that hurts and kills people.


Vos on what really matters!
And with Covid-19 surging in Wisconsin again (7/18 Sat 978 new cases, 10 deaths), believe it or not, Republicans aren't about to come back to work and admit they and the State Supreme Court were wrong. Their voters won't hold them accountable or even notice their depraved lack of responsibility.

It seems Republicans simply want to "stand with the police" not reforming a thing, stand with the NRA doing nothing about mass shootings, or stand against COVID-19 health policy.

Reckless Abandon #1: GOP convention host Rep. Mike Gallagher (R) trashed Democrats with utter nonsense, and they liked it. No Democrat, no progressive, no liberal I know has ever said the things listed below. But they do set up a stark contrast that makes doing nothing about the nations social and economic problems seem like the best alternative if the other choice is to "tear down our country, tear it apart and destroy it." 

Democrats supposedly have said...
"America is an evil country," "America is so evil and so racist...we must tear it down." "it's about blaming America first," "they believe America is inherently evil," "this election is about the mob, the leftists," "they force those who they disagree with to kneel before them," "to cancel out history,"  "to tolerate lawlessness under the disguise of justice," …"We utterly reject the lie that America is an evil racist country":
We all reject that lie because no one said that. He's quite the story teller:

Reckless Abandon #2: How Republicans avoid problem solving or dealing with civil unrest:
1. Gallagher: "We've seen violent mobs take to our streets." Nope, they're called protesters. Why are they out protesting again?

2. Gallagher: "Let them say we stood with our dedicated law enforcement professionals..." 
So, no problem, no reform?

3. Speaker: "Do we want to be the next Seattle? Do we want to be the next Minneapolis...Chicago? 
Well, those are cities and we're a state? No?
4. Speaker: "The Democrats, they don't want you to speak up, they want you to fear, to be silent." 
No one ever said that. And who are these chicken shit frightened losers afraid to speak up? Uh, that's on you.

5. Tiffany: "They want to release violent felons." No, but scary.
Reckless Abandon #3: On our gerrymandered Republicans much talked about efforts to work with Gov. Evers after gutting his powers just before he took office:

1. Fitzgerald: "When you have a reluctant candidate (Evers), who was then fortunate to be elected, I don't think he wanted the job, and I quite honestly don't think the governor is up to the job." He beat Scott Walker...a "fortunate" win?

2. Fitzgerald: "You had to consider, was he a peer? Was he somebody who had an agenda, was he somebody who defined himself already, and I think the answer to all that is no." Arrogant Fitzgerald works only with his "peers." So Evers won a statewide election without "an agenda?"

3. Fitzgerald: "So what happens, the void is filled by staff, and he surrounded himself with staff and the staff is political, they're not policy people." Policy people? You mean lobbyist, sons and daughters of lobbyists, political advisors and former politicians with no previous experience in their departments? Got it.

4. Fitzgerald: "...we were joking about the recording earlier, but that's kind the epitome I think of the disrespect that has emerged." And that's the epitome of petty lengths Fitzgerald will go to manufacturer phony outrage.
Reckless Abandon #4: Dumb Ron Johnson couldn't show up to this hot bed of Covid-19 spreaders, so as usual, he avoided another personal appearance with the following recorded moronic attack on the Democrats. Notice how Johnson asks that we work together, all the while demanding the Republicans "defeat the left at every level and every stage of the election cycle." Also quite humorous and ridiculous, the idea that "younger Americans are embracing socialism and rejecting freedom of expression."  Notice too that "lawlessness" is happening because of the Trump administration. Say Ron, if you have to make stuff up like this to make the your crazy lack of governing look better, okay.

Notice again there are no policy ideas or solutions offered up. I'm assuming the elimination of protesting bad government is solution enough:

Johnson: "The Democratic Party is lurching toward socialism. The unfortunate reality we face today is a result of the radical left taking control of our colleges and universities within the last several decades by controlling the colleges, of education, journalism, and the law. 

The impact is particularly noticeable on younger Americans who are embracing socialism and rejecting freedom of expression in alarming numbers. 

Instead of working together to form a more perfect union, their goal is to tear down our country, tear it apart and to destroy it. 

We need to defeat the left at every level and every stage of the election cycle. This is another moment of choosing when we descend down a path of growing lawlessness and destruction, erasing our history in a futile pursuit of a socialized Utopia that history proves does not exist, or do we come together and acknowledge our shortcomings and work to help every citizen pursue and achieve the American dream?"
Reckless Abandon #5: The Chaos Trump let Loose: My Trump cult friend in Milwaukee is reveling in Trump's campaign of horror, partially listed here by Thom Hartmann:
They revel in their efforts to end Obamacare; resumption of federal executions; authorize the use of formerly banned pesticides causing cancer and neurological damage to children; allow coal and oil companies to dump more waste in our rivers; children slaughtered in classrooms; Black people regularly murdered by police; Trump calls those asking for change "terrorists" and "thugs;" refers to Nazis as "very fine people" and retweets calls for "white power;" fighting efforts to extend unemployment relief; discouraging wearing masks or social distancing; raising doubts about science; causing the deaths of over a 100,000 Americans; holds indoor rallies knowing some people will be dead in a matter of weeks.

Friday, July 10, 2020

Wacky Republican State Supreme Court throws baffling Chaos into governing!

It's tough to be a Governor when you have two branches of government writing legislation, and one can't be the legislation written by the judicial branch's Supreme Court.

The forever gerrymandered GOP legislature is using the Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty to pass legislation via lawsuits in the State Supreme Court. 

This time the rarely challenged power of the governors powerful veto pen, which has been allowed over and over again since 1935. In fact the governor holds "a 'quasi-legislative' role." The only changes came from referendums pass by the voters. Not anymore.

With 5 different mind-bending leaps of logic, the five conservative activist Justices, egged on by a WILL lawsuit, made the Governors future budget vetoes an impossible task that includes future lawsuits and second guessing that not surprisingly, leaves the GOP in complete control. 

Conservative Chaos, Again: Instead one of one clearly defined decision, and you can't make this stuff, each justice legislated this way;
But a majority could not agree on how to decide when to throw out vetoes.
1. Rebecca Bradley and Kelly argued vetoes could be used only to stop the adoption of a specific measure the Legislature had voted on.

2. Hagedorn and Ziegler contended a governor could use vetoes to slightly modify budget provisions, but could not selectively edit legislation to write new policies.

3. And Roggensack maintained partial vetoes were acceptable as long as they dealt with the same subject matter as what was written in the original legislation.
And Scott Walker's challenged vetoes? 
Also Friday, the Supreme Court threw out a narrower case that challenged vetoes by Walker from 2017. They determined that lawsuit had been filed too late and dismissed it.
Not a press release peep from our very silent Democrats. Real fighters.