Monday, October 31, 2016
Walker's out-of-state coattails beyond the reach of Wisconsin districts he and his Legislative pals fixed through secret redistricting map-drawing have proven minuscule and threadbare at best. I've seen longer coattails on onesies at garage sales.
Harken back to 2013 when Virginia Republican gubernatorial candidate and then-Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli came close but lost to Democrat Terry McAullife, and I've always wondered if Cuccinelli wondered if there had been a better way to spend some of his campaign's last precious hours than listening to Walker bring his unwelcome union-bashing message to sparse crowds:
One of the about 100 supporters gathered in a field in this D.C. exurb waved a “Stand with Walker” sign from last year’s recall fight.
At an earlier stop in Spotsylvania, which drew about 150, Republican National Committee chairman Reince Priebus led the crowd in singing Walker a happy 46th birthday.
If anything, Team Cuccinelli, with a Walker 'assist,' helped turn Virginia blue, as will be borne out again next week when Hillary Clinton whomps Donald Trump there.
Back to last Friday, when West Virginia media reported that its state's anti-union GOP gubernatorial candidate Bill Cole said Walker is his model:
During the campaign event Friday, Cole made it clear that he would further emulate what Walker has done in Wisconsin over the past five years if he is elected to the state’s highest office.
That record includes continued support for Wisconsin’s right-to-work law that caused Walker to fight a recall in 2012, after unions in the state gathered enough signatures to prompt a special election.You might as well invite in a wellness specialist who passes out free cigarettes.
West Virginia is already a poor state; people there ought to take a look at data and trends which showing how deeply Walker and his gerrymandered allies have damaged Wisconsin's economy, stalled growth except in low-wage jobs and embedded problems which may never be repaired.
Walker models nothing positive.
Posted by James Rowen at 6:15 PM
A major gathering of deplorables including the sitting Wisconsin Governor is headed for public display in Eau Claire.
It won't be first public rodeo for Scott Walker and the tax-avoiding, woman-grabbing, minority-insulting GOP Presidential pick:
Posted by James Rowen at 2:36 PM
The agency was reluctant to begin addressing frac sand issues broadly - - because that's how a 'chamber of commerce mentality' department works, as I've noted often.
So before you get too giddy over the DNR's planned activity, read further into the story and discover that the agency's response comes three years after the discovery of heavy metal contamination in water near the mining, and the projection that further actions might wait until 2021.
Do not be surprised, because:
A) The DNR said it knew its frac sand mining regulation was inadequate but kept on issuing new mining permits. True story.
B) Its disregard was evident even earlier. Nearly five years ago, the DNR's then-Deputy Secretary Matt Moroney - - now a special assistant to Gov. Walker on his personal staff - - announced there would be no regulation initiative aimed at the rapidly-growing frac sand industry:
Posted by James Rowen at 8:15 AM
Posted by James Rowen at 7:58 AM
Donald Trump's presidential transition operation is quietly building a series of policy teams tasked with mapping out the businessman's agenda, according to a source familiar with the process.
The transition operation, which is chaired by New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, is setting up policy teams focused on taxes, financial services, veterans, national security, energy and even building a border wall between the United States and Mexico, the source said.
Christie huddled behind closed doors last week with GOP lobbyists from the financial services and energy sector, and the transition staff is expected to balloon in size over the next week as Christie brings more policy advisers on board.While others work on judicial appointments, ambassadorial nominees, etc.
Posted by James Rowen at 12:30 AM
Sunday, October 30, 2016
A couple of days, when analyzing policies of Walkerite Republicans that make Wisconsin unattractive, I'd written:
It would not surprise me if Wisconsin's population gain slows or plateaus as a result of these punitive, small-minded and overtly hostile GOP programs, guaranteeing Wisconsin's long-term status as a low-wage, slow-to-no-new job growth entrepreneurial and lifestyle backwater.Not to mention earlier posts:
How much evidence do you need to grasp the damage our 'Midwestern nice" presidential poseur-in-chief has added to Wisconsin's stalled economy through punitive, trickle-down fiscal 'planning' - - damage he heaped on top of a national recession recovery that is bypassing the state on his watch?
The economic prediction of state legislator Robin Vos, now Assembly Speaker, who spoke with certainty in April 2012 about the coming boom in Wisconsin once Scott Walker nailed down the recall win:
Once June 5 hits and Gov. Scott Walker is securely re-elected, “our economy is going to take off like a rocket,” state Rep. Robin Vos, R-Rochester, said Monday during a meeting with The Journal Times Editorial Board.
Updated: After all, Walker pledged during his ill-fated run for the Presidency to "wreak havoc" in Washington, DC - - and we all knew we were living through the trial run.
With the predicable, intentional and long-term consequences.
Posted by James Rowen at 3:41 PM
After all, Walker during his ill-fated run for the Presidency pledged to "wreak havoc" on Washington, DC - - having already perfected that strategy here.
Imagine if Walker and the ideologically-driven party, perpetual campaign, stage-managed Legislature, courts, agencies and media they control had put the same energy and resources they spent cutting education, dismantling collective bargaining, obstructing wind and solar development, preventing state residents from voting or playing favorites with public assets into honestly listening to people and crafting an inclusive, expansive, forward-looking agenda.
So much opportunity, absolutely wasted.
Posted by James Rowen at 9:06 AM
Posted by James Rowen at 8:35 AM
Saturday, October 29, 2016
Posted by James Rowen at 12:45 AM
Friday, October 28, 2016
This is yet another example of a non-profit Wisconsin environmental group taking the lead in environmental protection - - such as an action this week to force clean air and public health compliance by state frac sand mining - - because Walker's corporately-and-ideologically directed DNR, and the GOP-run office of Attorney General Brad Schimel, and the GOP-led Legislature and the GOP-obesiant State Supreme Court have intentionally given up their conservation preservation obligations so that big ag, large feedlots and other special interests can enjoy freer access to the state overtaxed and now-under regulated waters - -
- - and benefit from easier pollution inspections and enforcement actions designed to prevent problems or resolve them when they arise.
That's the impaired Little Plover River, above, photographed by the River Alliance of Wisconsin, having run dry as often happens in the summer after nearby potato farms have pumped out the groundwater.
More information, here.
The lawsuits are a good sign that citizens are not going to accept the one-sided and dirty hand this administration is handing them - - another example is the strong citizen opposition to the proposed Kohler golf course along Lake Michigan and on a nature preserve for which the DNR already has a thumb on the regulatory scales - - but it's wrong that the state can default its clean air and water obligations which forces people to spend money from their own pockets to do the state's proper job.
Posted by James Rowen at 7:21 PM
Clarke runs as a Democrat but behaves like a Republican.
One inmate died of dehydration; that death has been ruled a homicide, and reports indicate some water in the inmate's cell had been shut off by deputies.
This is in the year 2016, I remind you, in a publicly-owned and operated under the direction of the Milwaukee County Sheriff - - an elected official - - whose political statements are filled with homilies about his absolute authority over his sphere as permitted, he says, by the US Constitution, and also about others taking personal responsibility.
As the Journal Sentinel reported:
The death of an inmate in the Milwaukee County Jail has been ruled a homicide, four months after corrections officers reportedly cut off his water supply for an extended period of time.
The cause of death was dehydration, with other significant conditions including bipolar disorder, according to autopsy results released Thursday by the Milwaukee County medical examiner's office....
Testing after Thomas died revealed "profound dehydration," according to the medical examiner's office.
Posted by James Rowen at 12:31 PM
Posted by James Rowen at 12:00 AM
Thursday, October 27, 2016
- - by an Oregon federal jury after the takeover, occupation of and damage to a US Wildlife facility raises all sorts of issues:
* Will this embolden Trump partisans who have talked openly of insurrection should Trump lose the Presidential election?
* How can you square this with the mass arrests being visited upon Native Americans and their supporters at the site of the North Dakota pipeline?
The double-standards are blatant and disturbing and dangerous and wrong, wrong, wrong.
Posted by James Rowen at 7:44 PM
[Updated from 5:30 p.m., 10/25] Our intentionally-corrupted state with Scott Walker at the helm is leading the news today.
From The New York Times:
MADISON, Wis. — It seemed a clear victory for voting rights advocates in July when a federal court invalidated much of Wisconsin’s restrictive elections law, concluding that it discriminated against minorities by requiring voters to produce photo ID cards that blacks and Latinos too often lack. The remedy was straightforward: Henceforth, the state was to “promptly issue a credential valid as a voting ID to any person” who applied for one.
But this month when Treasure Collins visited one of the Wisconsin motor vehicle offices that issue IDs, she found something entirely different.And today, separately from a story spreading across the Internet originating with discoveries made by One Wisconsin Institute and published in The Nation:
A City Clerk Opposed an Early-Voting Site at UW–Green Bay Because ‘Students Lean More Toward the Democrats’Walker policies and allies are throughout these stories.
Updated with past articles:
* Behind closed doors, Republicans were giddy over voter ID's partisan opportunities.
* In a separate interview, Glenn Grothman, a former Wisconsin GOP state senator promoted to the US Congress said the voter ID law would help a Republican presidential candidate win Wisconsin this November.
And Wisconsin Republicans and their allies have acknowledged using suppressionist laws and tactics for partisan benefit:
Posted by James Rowen at 5:54 PM
- - and that one of the issues raised by opponents is the review of the plan by the Scott Walker-directed 'chamber of commerce mentality' Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources without requiring the company to submit a formal permit application.
The plan even includes turning over for golf course operations at least four acres of land in the adjoining Kohler Andrae State Park - - a request likely to find a friendly reception at the DNR where, as we speak, thousands of acres of state land under DNR ownership - - public land, your land - - is being offered for sale.
While other big corporate operations like water-hogging, manure-and-pollution producing big feedlots and heavily-polluting frac sand mines are given kid-gloves' permit reviews and continuing 'oversight.
Just today, Wisconsin organizations are seeking federal intervention over health hazards posed by frac sand mining, made worse in Wisconsin by the DNR's inaction:
MADISON, WI – On behalf of the Ho-Chunk Nation and the Sierra Club – John Muir Chapter, Midwest Environmental Advocates filed a petition this week with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency requesting formal objection by the federal agency to an air pollution permit approved by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.The grassroots organization Friends of the Black River Forest, one of several groups around the state which has taken on the burden of environmental preservation which Walker's DNR has intentionally forfeited, has continued to question the project and has asked DNR Secretary Cathy Stepp - - again - - for a meeting. Here is the text of the organization's request.
Posted by James Rowen at 1:12 PM