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Member since: Thu Apr 29, 2010, 03:31 PM
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Haste, Hustle and Scott Walker


In the formal announcement of his presidential campaign on Monday, Scott Walker mentioned God right away, introduced himself as a preacher’s son and invoked religion repeatedly, as he has throughout a perpetual candidacy that stretches back to his college days, when he told the Marquette University yearbook: “I really think there’s a reason why God put all these political thoughts in my head.”

But what I see in him is the kind of soullessness too common in American politicians and the kind of careerism that makes American politics such a dreary spectacle. I see an ambition even more pronounced than any ideology. I see an interest in personal advancement that eclipses any investment in personal growth. These are hardly unusual traits in our halls of government. But they’re distilled in Walker, the governor of Wisconsin.


He tailors his persona to the race at hand. To win his second term as governor of Wisconsin and thus be able to crow, as he’s doing now, about the triumph of a conservative politician “in a blue state,” he played down his opposition to abortion, signaled resignation to same-sex marriage and explicitly supported a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants.

But with his current focus on the Iowa caucuses, he no longer supports a path to citizenship, flaunts his anti-abortion credentials and has called for a constitutional amendment permitting states to outlaw same-sex marriage. He even has a newfound affection for ethanol.

New Jersey proposes lottery for college students who didn't major in math


New Jersey could become the first state in the country to create a ‘golden ticket’ for student loan debt.

If N.J. State Assemblyman John J. Burzichelli is successful in passing his sponsored bill, a new lottery would be created to help students rid themselves of college debt — one by one.


Current students and alumni would be eligible to participate, but each person must have their student loan balance authenticated prior to the purchase of the lottery ticket.

Scott Walker, circa 2015: the decision on abortion shouldn’t be between a woman and her doctor


During a recent interview with Laura Ingraham, Republican presidential candidate Scott Walker did a complete reversal on abortion, telling Ingraham that he doesn’t believe the final decision on whether a woman should have an abortion should be between the woman and her doctor.

Ingraham responded: “But you don’t believe — I just want to clarify this, governor … you don’t believe the final decision should be between a woman and her doctor—”

“No,” Walker replied.

So here in 2015, Gov. Scott Walker believes that the final decision on whether a woman should be able to receive an abortion shouldn’t be between a woman and her doctor, but back in 2014 when he was in a reelection campaign he ran an ad in which he said, “Hi, I’m Scott Walker. I’m pro-life,” he says. “But there’s no doubt in my mind the decision of whether or not to end a pregnancy is an agonizing one. That’s why I support legislation to increase safety and to provide more information for a woman considering her options. The bill leaves the final decision to a woman and her doctor.”

Press release: Walker Campaign Finance Report Riddled with Errors


Here are some of the 25 contributors with erroneous employer information cited in the Democracy Campaign complaint:

A $4,100 contribution on Aug. 25, 2014, by B. Wayne Hughes, of Malibu, Calif., identifies him as owner of the Piggly Wiggly Store in Burlington, Wis. Online records show: There is no Piggly Wiggly grocery store in Burlington, and the business address listed for the store in Walker’s campaign finance report is for Gooseberries Fresh Food Market; Hughes is a California billionaire, and the Malibu personal address listed for him in Walker’s campaign finance report is for a property management business called American Commercial Equities, which Hughes owns;

A $3,000 contribution on Sept. 2, 2014, by James Liautaud, of Key Largo, Fla., identifies him as a physics professor at Purdue University located in West Lafayette, Ind. Online records show Liautaud, formerly of Illinois, has founded numerous companies, including the Jimmy Johns sandwich chain, but is not a physics professor;

A $2,500 contribution on Oct. 3, 2014, by Karen McKeown, of Tyler, Tex., identifies her as president of Waxie Sanitary Supply in San Diego, Calif. Online records show Jeff Roberts is the president of Waxie Sanitary Supply and McKeown is a nurse who currently lives in Madison, Wis., and has served as administrator of Wisconsin’s Division of Public Health since 2012;

Three contributions on Aug. 25, 2014, Oct. 6, 2014, and Oct. 13, 2014, that totaled $1,700 by Maejel A. Graf, of Atherton, Calif., identify her as a manager at three different companies in two states – Premier Properties of Minnesota in Excelsior, Minn.; Regal-Beloit Corp. in Beloit, Wis.; and ABC Supply in Madison, Wis. Online records found she is a retiree who is not employed by any of these companies;

More at the link.

Scott Walker's Eagle Scout badges

Wisconsin: Write, Call and Be Vocal by Thursday 16th...RE: DNR & Richfield CAFO permit!

From my email ...

This is important… Please read, write the DNR and share widely…. We won the case, don’t let the DNR go around the Judge’s order…

Friends of the Central Sands

As shared with you two weeks ago the DNR is poised to issue a modified WPDES permit (waste spreading) to the Richfield CAFO without taking into consideration the Judge’s comments in our successful appeal. You may recall that Judge Boldt’s decision in the WPDES portion of our appeal discussed our request for an Animal Unit cap, i.e. a cap on the number of animal units (cows) Richfield Dairy can put on its property. This effectively limits the waste the facility can generate. Judge Boldt agreed a cap was appropriate, and further said: “The Department should establish a sustainable cap on animal units in conjunction with the revised permit reducing the maximum annual pumping in the companion high-capacity well cases.”

Richfield Dairy originally applied for 6,270 Animal Units (AU) or about 4,550 cows and steers. Well to us this was pretty clear. Less water = less animals. After Judge Boldt’s decision came down, Richfield Dairy still asked for 6,270 Animal Units. Friends of the Central Sand's legal counsel protested to the DNR that this number was too high, given the reduced 52.5 million gallons per year (MGPY) pumping limit, and argued that a cap of 4,279 AU was appropriate based on the dairy’s own documentation.

Well, the DNR has tentatively decided to modify the WPDES permit and include a cap of 6,270 AU—just what Richfield Dairy asked for. The notice is available here, the draft permit is here, and the supporting documents are here. They did not provide strong justification for their decision, so FOCS legal counsel contacted DNR staff directly. Our legal counsel was told that the DNR didn’t believe that Judge Boldt actually required the AU number to be tied to the pumping limit.

We obviously disagree. It’s pretty clear from Judge Boldt’s own words that he intended the AU cap to be tied to the pumping limit, that he wanted DNR to attempt this analysis, and that the expectation was that the AU limit would be lower as a result of the pumping limit. The DNR couldn’t set a random AU cap and let the Dairy determine how to comply with the pumping limit.

Tell them what you think….

The public notice period on the proposed permit change expires this Thursday, July 16. Please send comments to Ms. Casey Jones, DNR Oshkosh Service Center, 625 E. County Road Y, Oshkosh, WI 54901, (920) 303- 5426, Casey.Jones@Wisconsin.gov Let her know what you think of the DNR’s decision to basically do the CAFO’s bidding.

Talking points…

- This letter is regarding the DNR’s proposal to modify Richfield Dairy WPDES permit to impose an animal unit cap of 6,270.

- FOCS successfully petitioned the court regarding high capacity wells resulting in Judge Boldt’s final order limiting Richfield Dairy’s pumping to 52.5 million gallons per year given the area’s declining water resources.

- The Judge’s order said … “The Department should establish a sustainable cap on animal units in conjunction with the revised permit reducing the maximum annual pumping in the companion high-capacity well cases.”

- Based on Richfield Dairy’s own numbers, provided during the contested case proceeding as part of sworn discovery responses, we believe that number to be 4,279 AU.

- The DNR’s proposed permit modification fails to comply with the administrative law judge’s order and fails to exercise any discretion on the matter of the AU cap as it relates to pumping.

Zack Greinke interviewed at All Star Game

Matt Vasgergian: "Zack, you want to say a few words?"

Zack Greinke: "No."

The case for higher taxes on the wealthy

An Open Letter to Those Who Still Stand With Walker

For those who missed this earlier thread by riversedge ... http://www.democraticunderground.com/108416891


As I stated in a previous blog, “To my friends who voted for Governor Walker, all three times, I often asked and still do, has your quality of life improved? Does me having to pay more for my healthcare make yours any better? Does weakening my job security strengthen yours? Did my pay cut help to get you a raise? Usually I get blank stares, but the point is that the reasons for voting for Governor Walker in the first place run much deeper. One of the most effective messages Governor Walker used against public sector employees was to tap into the deep resentment that many people feel/felt toward those they perceived to be an elitist class apart. As he stated, it was a fight between the ‘have-nots’ vs. the ‘haves.’ To many who voted for Walker, it wasn’t about making things better for your fellow Wisconsinites, for Wisconsin’s economy, or improving misguided policies. Walker supporters wanted to even the playing field through shared misery. Instead of working together to get better healthcare, job security, and pay in the private sector, instead, voters wanted some kind of justice where everyone suffered equally. Public workers were and still remain an easy scapegoat with our ‘Cadillac benefits’ and ‘job security for life.’ Even though tenure is not job security for life and those ‘Cadillac’ benefits were bargained for in exchange for lower wages, most have no idea of those realities unless they know someone or personally work in higher education or in the public sector.”


Many have called this a historic month for progressives. The United States Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage, the Affordable Care Act survived its second Supreme Court test in three years, and the U.S. unemployment rate fell to 5.3%, its lowest level since April 2008. But here in Wisconsin, it doesn’t seem as if we’re making the same progress. It is, in fact, and has felt as though we’ve been living in an alternative universe for years now. A recent study by the Pew Charitable Trusts found that Wisconsin’s middle class — households earning between about $34,500 and $103,000 — has shrunk at a faster rate than any other state in the country. As the Journal Sentinel reported in June, “Wisconsin was 35th out of 50 states in private-sector job growth over the four years of Walker’s first term, according to government data released Wednesday. The numbers came as no surprise. The state was 35th in 2011, 36th in 2012, 38th in 2013 and 38th in 2014, based on the Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages. Wisconsin has persistently lagged behind the nation and most nearby states during Walker’s time in office, and a sizable chunk of the state’s voters are aware of that trend, polls show. Walker’s unmet 2010 campaign promise of 250,000 new jobs and the partisan war over his governorship has turned Wisconsin’s employment picture into an ongoing political saga fueled by chronically tepid jobs reports.” As Christopher Flavelle notes there has been low wage growth, job growth, and “state tax revenue increased just 4 percent between the first quarter of 2011 and the third quarter of last year, compared with a 20 percent increase for the median state. So the news this month that Wisconsin was skipping a scheduled $108 million debt payment, owing to an unexpected budget shortfall, only underlined a trend that’s been years in the making. Of the 40 states with general-obligation bonds, 25 have credit ratings from Moody’s that are better than Wisconsin’s.” In addition, he states that “measured by relative economic outcomes, Walker’s tenure falls somewhere between lackluster and a failure.”


What has garnered the most attention was the issue of open records. As The Green Bay Gazette, pointed out, strange bedfellows lined up against the open records gutting in the biennial budget including the Center for Media and Democracy, WI Attorney General Brad Shimel (R), State Sen. Robert Cowles, (R-Allouez), The Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council, the Madison chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists, One Wisconsin Now, the conservative think-tank, the MacIver Institute for Public Policy and the conservative Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty. Not shockingly, none of the lawmakers that slipped the measure in were willing to take credit for it.


Walker supporters, if you are not swayed by facts, by frames, by narratives, and by language, then let me attempt to appeal to your most base patriotic notions of what is good, fair, just, and democratic. In an excerpt from a blog written specifically in regards to the Declaration of Independence and Walker’s policies in Wisconsin, the author writes, “‘Consent of the governed’ is a key phrase, because it implies that in the mind of the Founders legislators would have told the people how they intend to govern, and that people should have approved of the policies and actions that are taking place, likely through elections. Does that sound like this crew, who have governed by surprise and instituted numerous policies in this budget that they never ran on last November . . . .Think about the state’s secretive gerrymandering and numerous examples of the overriding of local initiatives and powers. These moves have skewed the makeup of the state’s legislature and laws to something that does not reflect the views of the state and local areas.

More, and more links, at the link.

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