A Lesson They Have Forgotten

I never meet a ragged boy in the street without feeling that I may owe him a salute, for I know not what possibilities may be buttoned up under his coat.

James A Garfield, President (R)  circa 1870s

Thought Control from Your Boss

This isn’t exactly ALEC, but I do want to share a few thoughts about the Koch boys, Citizens’ United and Wisconsin. In case you missed it, the Milwaukee County DA is looking at the possibility of illegal campaign activities at a Milwaukee base corporation, Rite-Hite. The CEO sent employees a letter warning them of potential dire consequences to their employment should the “wrong” candidates get elected. This unfiltered politicking by a corporation directed at its employees was unimaginable and illegal for decades. Then came Citizens’ United.

Koch Industries deployed this new tactic in the 2010 mid-term elections since they were then free to “persuade” employees how to vote, even using coercion. The 10/26 J/S reports the Rite-Hite threats are very similar in nature to one written by Koch Industries CEO sent to 50,000 employees including some at Georgia Pacific here in Wisconsin. One catch, in our state there is a specific statue that prohibits threatening or potential work place consequences if it’s intended to influence political opinion or votes of employees.

If ALEC sponsored puppets are restored to the majorities in the Assembly and Senate here, look for a change in state law to be initiated and more workplace threats and coercion from the Koch boys and their friends. One more reason to vote for Pat Veeser…. If you need one.

Registration and Voting

Do you want to register to vote? to vote early? or to find out where to vote?  Do you know someone who does?  A friend or neighbor who may need help doing so?  Are you sure you are properly registered?  —–  Find the process and rules involved for registering and for voting, in a straight-forward and easy-to-read format, on two new pages, “VOTING INs AND OUTs” and “Voter REGISTRATION” in the ELECTIONS section.

“the United States of ALEC” Sunday, 6 PM

I know the Packers are doing it again on Sunday afternoon against the Saints but there are now two reasons to take a pass on the game. First, is of course, third rate offiiciating and the greed of the NFL, the other is a great episode of Moyers and Company on Public Television at 6 pm. This weekend Bill Moyer goes in depth to reveal the hidden world of ALEC. The intro describes ALEC I this episode as the “scheme to remake America, one state house at a time.”

Signs of the Times

You will see this 4′ x 8′ sign in a total of 12 locations from Brussels to Sister Bay. There is one sign set you could see just about anywhere, because it is mounted on a farm wagon.  Its home base is in the front yard of Bob & Jean Grosso’s home between Maplewood and Forestville, but that wagon has a reputation of wandering,

To the left is a very special sign provided by Peter Wyatt and Victoria Cherinich.   You will see it on the right side of Hwy 42/57 at the southwestern outskirts of Sturgeon Bay.  On the back of “Not Rich Enough”. you will see a different sign, when you are heading out of town, the sign on the right.  Thanks Peter and Victoria

More ALEC in Wisconsin

Imagine, if you will, what we might see on Fox News or hear on Limbaugh if George Soros, the National Education Association or the AFL-CIO picked up the tab for several members of the Wisconsin legislative delegation headed to the National Democratic Party convention or a national union convention. Hold that thought. John Nichols, associate editor of The Capital Times, reveals an unbelievable story about the legalized bribery occurring for years with ALEC at the center in his column titled “Close the ALEC Loophole,” that appears in the August 26th Wisconsin State Journal.

ALEC has provided and continues to provide “scholarships” that pick up the tab for our legislators’ trip to ALEC meetings where they receive and discuss “model legislation.” These drafts become what gets passed around in the party caucuses, voted upon and signed into law by our governor. Lisa Graves, executive director of the Center For Media in the Public Interest put it this way, “global corporations that want to change Wisconsin laws are bankrolling trips to ALEC meetings where legislators and lobbyists meet and vote on model bills that politicians bring back to Wisconsin and introduce as their own brilliant ideas…”

This week the Government Accountability Board will consider whether legislators should be allowed to accept these so called “scholarships” that make a mockery of the high standards of transparency in government that we value in Wisconsin.


Nuns, Faith and Politics

“I lobbied on minimum wage in California. And we ended up raising minimum wage. And what happened was the economy grew. Because the problem is if we believe in free market, then you shift money to get the economy going. You shift money to where there’s pent-up demand. Where is there pent-up demand right now? It’s at the bottom, not at the top.”

Sister Simone Campbell, on 26 Aug 2012 edition of Bill Moyers & Company

(Sister Simone is Exec. Director of Network, a Catholic activist group that organized Nuns On The Bus)



The biggest fable of all is the “Don’t Tax the Job Creators” doctrine, formally called “Supply Side Economics”, “Trickle Down Economics” or, if you prefer, “Reaganomics”.  It’s a hoax; a hoax that has persisted for 30 years in spite of contrary evidence. It will not work, does not work and never has worked (except for the very wealthy, the 1%).  Graphs help make the truth vividly apparent.   This graph is just one of several that show that since the advent of Reagonomics the very wealthy have exceedingly benefited more than others.  Not convinced that Reagonomics is bad for you, then find more evidence at A Civil American Debate for an essay that provides a detailed factual scholarly analysis of this graph and several others.

Favorite 10 Things to Know About Paul Ryan

“If there was ever any doubt that Mitt Romney’s got a disastrous plan for America—he made himself 100% clear when he picked right-wing extremist Paul Ryan as his running mate. Paul Ryan is bad for America.  We can’t beat him if Americans don’t know everything he stands for”.

Above is the last paragraph of the last article in Allin’s Notes of 16 Aug.  If you were not able to read it then click here to learn “everything he stands for.”


A Call to Reason

“There is too much at stake to allow pride or passion to influence your decision.  Never for a moment believe that the great body of the citizens of any State or States can deliberately intend to do wrong.  They may, under the influence of temporary excitement or misguided opinions, commit mistakes; they may be misled for a time by suggestions of self interest; but in a community so enlightened and patriotic as the people of the United States argument will soon make them sensible of their errors, and when convinced they will be ready to repair them.”

President Andrew Jackson circa 1830
as quoted by Jon Meacham in “American Lion”

Tea Party Voice in Door County

If you thought, as I  have, that Republicans in Door County were mostly of the relatively moderate breed, then you may change your mind after checking out their local website, http://door.wisgop.info/. There you will find one article after another of radical Tea Party rant — misquotes, conspiracy theories, intransigent politics, Bachmann support, and deference to the elite 1%.  In a link dated July 23rd, Jim Diment claims “There’s no more room for compromise. When Republicans and Democrats worked together in the past, the result was almost always a bigger, more expensive government.

What ever happened to center-right Republicanism?  Their voices seem squelched — or perhaps, center-right attitudes only exist within the Democratic Party these days.