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Scuba

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Member since: Thu Apr 29, 2010, 03:31 PM
Number of posts: 44,028

Journal Archives

Wisconsin's last honest Republican (Dale Schultz) joins Bob Jauch, Joy Cardin to talk Walker budget

Listen here if you missed this. It's a great dissection of Walker's draconian proposals.


http://www.wpr.org/listen/712036

It’s a special state budget edition of the Week in Review! Joy Cardin welcomes former senators Dale Schultz and Bob Jauch to discuss the “Wisconsin Idea.” Plus, they weigh in on Gov. Scott Walker’s ideas for public broadcasting, education, the Department of Natural Resources, and other areas....

Dear Elizabeth Warren, please run for President

http://www.runwarrenrun.org/standforwarren/

(From MoveOn)


We're releasing a letter to demonstrate to Senator Warren—and the political press paying attention—the deep and diverse set of backgrounds and experiences that make up our movement.

New Hampshire State Rep. Renny Cushing is an “Elected Official for Warren,” for instance. And we know that there are union members for Warren, students for Warren, and so many others. It’d be nearly impossible for political observers to miss our collective voices coming together for Senator Warren.

Will you join with thousands of other Elizabeth Warren supporters by adding your name? Just select which groups you belong in from the list and then click "Join!"

Biran Williams should've just said "I suffered a lapse of judgement and lied about my helicopter ...

... being attacked. I am sorry, very sorry."


Then he should have resigned. The next morning he would be able to once again look at himself in the mirror, and the always-forgiving American people would have let him move on with his life.

Instead his half-lie confession will result in him being ridiculed for the next decade.



The truth is a powerful healer.

Paul Ryan's 'envy economics' nonsense

http://www.jsonline.com/news/opinion/paul-ryans-envy-economics-nonsense-b99439356z1-290829311.html

U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan values his reputation as a serious policy analyst and a genial soul. But he's not above name-calling, and he insists that President Obama's budget is the product of "envy economics." Ryan's label invites a comparable description of his own approach, which would slash taxes on the rich while cutting programs for the poor and many middle-income Americans. If Ryan wants to play the branding game, is it unfair to ask him why "greed economics" isn't an appropriate tag for his own approach?

...

Let's first examine Ryan's envy claim. "Look," he said on "Meet the Press" last Sunday, "the president has done two big rounds of tax increases. It's one of the reasons why we have this stagnant economy we do. He's practicing yet again envy economics and it doesn't work. We are an aspirational people. We are an optimistic people and our policies should reflect that in our country, and that is not the kind of economic policy or politics the president practices."

Well. Regiments of Republicans claimed that Obama's policies, and especially Obamacare, would be "job killers." In the face of 58 straight months of private-sector job growth, will they ever admit their claims were absolutely wrong? Will anyone even ask them? And like them or not, aren't Obama's proposals on higher education, child care and pre-kindergarten programs all about aspiration and optimism?

At least some conservatives, such as Michael Strain at the American Enterprise Institute, are coming around to the perfectly sensible view that a few percentage points up or down in the top income tax rate for the rich don't make much difference after all. As Bob Davis reported in The Wall Street Journal, many conservatives, including Strain, are supporting various policies (along the lines of the Earned Income Tax Credit) to lift the incomes of the working poor. Does anyone notice that this is redistribution?

The Progressive: Right-to-Work Laws Are a Fatal "Cure" (X-post from GD)

http://www.progressive.org/news/2015/02/187983/right-work-laws-are-fatal-cure

In Wisconsin, for example, the Republicans are eagerly advancing a prescription for sagging wages and opportunities in the private sector that would certainly result in a fatal “cure” or workers’ plight: a “right-to-work” law. Right-to-work laws are intended expressly to weaken unions by banning labor organizations from collecting fees from all workers who benefit from their extensive and costly efforts. This gives management a powerful incentive to divide workers by pressuring new workers to avoid financial support for the union.

Eventually, this translates into the erosion and near-complete decimation of unions in right-to-work states, the decline of worker safety, the marginalization of advocates for a strong social net, and predictably, primitive indicators of neglected health and educational needs. Instead, reflecting the hollowing-out of real democracy right-to-work states, these state typically neglect social needs and lavish vast public “incentives” on huge and profitable corporations.

But to avoid discussing the deplorable results of right-to-work laws, the Wisconsin Right to Work group––with close ties to Americans for Prosperity, the Koch brothers (see here, here, and here), and the well-funded Bradley Foundation––is raising the phantom specter of a non-existent threat called “forced unionism.” In reality, no one in the United States can ever be compelled to become a union member under any circumstances.

...

Drawing on data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Congressional Research Service concluded in a December, 2012 report that states permitting “fair-share” or union-security” provisions showed sharply higher median wages: $50,867 compared with $43,641 in right-to-work states, a 16.5 percent differential amounting to $7,226 per year. Numerous other studies confirm this substantial advantage for workers in states allowing “fair share” contracts, while those in right-to-work states banning “fair-share” contracts suffering significantly lower pay and benefits.



Click through to the article for more information and links.

The Progressive: Right-to-Work Laws Are a Fatal "Cure" (X-post from Labor)

http://www.progressive.org/news/2015/02/187983/right-work-laws-are-fatal-cure

In Wisconsin, for example, the Republicans are eagerly advancing a prescription for sagging wages and opportunities in the private sector that would certainly result in a fatal “cure” or workers’ plight: a “right-to-work” law. Right-to-work laws are intended expressly to weaken unions by banning labor organizations from collecting fees from all workers who benefit from their extensive and costly efforts. This gives management a powerful incentive to divide workers by pressuring new workers to avoid financial support for the union.

Eventually, this translates into the erosion and near-complete decimation of unions in right-to-work states, the decline of worker safety, the marginalization of advocates for a strong social net, and predictably, primitive indicators of neglected health and educational needs. Instead, reflecting the hollowing-out of real democracy right-to-work states, these state typically neglect social needs and lavish vast public “incentives” on huge and profitable corporations.

But to avoid discussing the deplorable results of right-to-work laws, the Wisconsin Right to Work group––with close ties to Americans for Prosperity, the Koch brothers (see here, here, and here), and the well-funded Bradley Foundation––is raising the phantom specter of a non-existent threat called “forced unionism.” In reality, no one in the United States can ever be compelled to become a union member under any circumstances.

...

Drawing on data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Congressional Research Service concluded in a December, 2012 report that states permitting “fair-share” or union-security” provisions showed sharply higher median wages: $50,867 compared with $43,641 in right-to-work states, a 16.5 percent differential amounting to $7,226 per year. Numerous other studies confirm this substantial advantage for workers in states allowing “fair share” contracts, while those in right-to-work states banning “fair-share” contracts suffering significantly lower pay and benefits.



Click through to the article for more information and links.

Wisconsin: Walker's chaos budget

http://thepoliticalenvironment.blogspot.com/2015/02/walkers-chaos-budget.html

Megalomania unbound: Scott Walker's proposed 2015-'17 budget is a score-settling (as I said earlier) ultra-Tea Party scorched-earth blueprint for statewide chaos - - a document drafted principally for his gratuitous, unbalanced power-grabbing-self-aggrandizement at the public's expense, as it proposes:

* Eliminating 66 science positions and DNR authority to oversee river protections where sand mining is rampant.

...

* Wiping out the historic Wisconsin citizen policy oversight board above the Department of Natural Resources, further consolidating Walker's personal administrative through his appointed Secretary and senior staff powers to minimize environmental inspection and enforcement actions that protect public health and resources so that our land and water can be more easily handed over to developers and despoilers.

...

* Starving more millions from already-strapped public schools statewide which took a billion-dollar hit in his first budget by directing unlimited transfers of per-pupil funds to private and parochial schools.



There is an upside, however. Wisconsin homeowners can expect to save about $10 on their annual property tax bills. More at the link.

Sing this to the tune of "99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall"

♫ 55 Obamacare votes.
55 votes to repeal.
Call the roll,
take the vote.
...56 votes to repeal. ♫



Harper Lee writing sequel to To Kill A Mockingbird, though I can't see why-- the Supreme Court ruled that white racism no longer exists.



On this day in 2005 Alberto Gonzales became the first Hispanic attorney general, though when asked about it, he says he doesn’t recall.


Look, the GOP knows their 56 votes to repeal Obamacare won't end it; they just want the 15 million people using it to know they hate them.



https://twitter.com/TeaPartyCat

How is it that the Republican Party has figured out inequality and economic populism are ...

... hot issues for appealing to voters while so many Democrats still don't get it?

US Senator Ron Johnson (R-WI) thinks Iowa is part of Wisconsin

http://www.uppitywis.org/blogarticle/ron-johnson-chooses-out-state-chain-showcase-local-businesses


Ron Johnson Chooses Out-of-State Chain to "Showcase Local Businesses"

As his re-election looms, U.S. Senator Ron Johnson is making a desperate attempt to fix his image of being Senator Snipe-- the Senator who is rumored to exist, but who nobody ever actually sees.

So, his staff came whipped up the idea to do a "Supper Club Tour," which is described as a two-fer: It gives his constituents the opportunity to verify that he is actually real and it gives Johnson the "opportunity to showcase local businesses." After all, what says, "I am not the elite gazillionaire that married into ridiculous wealth" more than going out for a beer and burger at the local supper club?

...

The next stop on his Supper Club Tour will be at a place called the Thunder Bay Grille in Pewaukee. This would be the same Thunder Bay Grille that is found in Illinois. And Iowa. And owned by Mike Whalen, the Iowa millionaire who owns 31 restaurants and hotels in six states. (That would also be the same Mike Whalen who ran against then-Congressman Bruce "The guy who lost to Joni Ernst" Braley in 2006-- small world, eh?)

Nothing says "local Wisconsin business" like a chain restaurant that is owned by some rich guy in Iowa.
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