Saturday, February 9, 2019

Milwaukee Sen. Carpenter a bulwark v. GOP/Walker Toxic Touch

This is a story about Milwaukee south side state senator Tim Carpenter, and how he should get more credit for protecting public trusts - - from water and wetlands to taxpayer dollars and transparency - - 
Image of Tim Carpenter
- - when those resources are threatened by special interests and their GOP bellhops.

And it's also about the politicians whom Carpenter has been standing up to years, and who didn't do their jobs to protect our resources, then simply figured out how to monetize their failures.
Walker's speaking fee: $25,000
* It was Carpenter, as a board member the WEDC controlled by Walker appointees, whose whistle-blowing about flaws in the Foxconn contract led to language rewrites that may help save millions and even billions of taxpayer dollars should the already-shale Foxconn project collapse.

I will add today's post to the 20-month-long Foxconn blog archive, maintained here.

*  Similarly, it was Carpenter, along with his moderate, then GOP senate colleague Dale Schultz, saved miles of the Penokee Hills and the Bad River watershed from at least 35 years of blasting and polluting to extract iron ore for which there was no market.

Both of these boondoggles were pushed by Walker and his legislative marionettes despite the obvious financial or environmental flaws.

Other similarities: GOP leaders have already spewed a false narrative about why the Foxconn project is wobbling, and when the mining company pulled out it did some fake finger-pointing even though its own analyses showed that the project site was too saturated to be mined, as the Bad River tribe and other critics had been say for months.

You begin to see the pattern. Hurry through a flawed plan. Employ secrecy. Hurry up with the phony excuses when all the b.s is exposed.

So props to Carpenter for years of strong public policy advocacy - - seen also in his effort to minimize spending on the Walker/special-interest driven highway expansions that have sapped those budgets, too.

Including the very segment to which GOP Assembly Speaker and Foxconn-booster Robin Vos has helped maneuver more than $250 million while other big projects like the Zoo Interchange are stalled and Walker's legacy Scottholes are re-emerging in the current thaw-freeze cycle.

Fascinating, also, that some of the promoters of the mine were rewarded with promotions, positions and perks:

Then-State GOP Rep. Jeff Stone, after apologetically refusing Native American input on the mining project's enabling bill which the mining company had played a key role in drafting was later appointed by Walker to head the water section of the Public Service Commission.

A key mining project spokesman was also named to a PSC post. Those appointments are documented, here
Soft landings for high-profile GTac mine personnel
And GOP State Senator Glenn Grothman, after traveling to the mining region and assuring people that any damage to their wells from 35 years of trucking and blasting could be fixed with caulk moved up to a congressional seat his party had made available through ultra-partisan gerrymandering Grothman had supported while a state legislator.

Stupidity, monetized.

And let's not forget the pro-mining Cathy Stepp, Walker's hand-picked inside-and-atop the-DNR-wrecker, who parlayed her obeisance to the wetland-fillers into the directorship at Donald Trump's Great Lakes US EPA regional office.

Ditto to the monetizing after abusing the public trust.

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