Saturday, April 18, 2015

Scott Walker Versus Climate Change


Two recent events will give the gentle reader a good idea of where Scott Walker stands on the issue of climate change. If one thought that Walker would take the educated position backed by science, one has not been paying much attention.

First, Walker wants to appoint his former head of the Department of Administration, Mike Huebsch, to the Public Service Commission, which regulates everything from power rates to construction of power plants and other energy related issues.

When being questioned for the confirmation of this appointment, Huebsch put his foot into it:
The question came up during the end of Huebsch’s April 7, 2015 appearance before the Senate Committee on Natural Resources and Energy. State Sen. Mark Miller (D-Monona) asked Huebsch for his views about "whether or not our activities in terms of energy generation are contributing to climate change?"

Huebsch responded that humans have can have an impact on climate change, but said he didn’t believe it is "anywhere near the level of impact of just the natural progression of our planet."

He added: "You know, the elimination of essentially every automobile would be offset by one volcano exploding."
When questioned about it, Huebsch quickly backtracked:
When we asked Huebsch for his evidence, he responded by forwarding us an email he had sent to Miller after the hearing.

"I answered a question you put to me inaccurately and I want to set the record straight," Huebsch wrote. "To your question regarding global climate change I indicated global volcanic activity can equal the emission output by the automobiles in the United States. That is inaccurate and I apologize for the error."

He added: "While the scientific community recognizes the natural impact on climate change due to carbon (CO2)and sulfur (SO2) emissions from volcanic activity, those emissions do not equate to the annual emissions from United States automobiles and other fossil fuel based transportation. I apologize for any confusion this may have caused."
Despite getting caught red-tongued in a brazen lie, the corporate media still couldn't give Huebsch the "Pants on Fire" rating that this statement so deservedly earned.

But that wasn't the most egregious example.

Taking after the ignorance of Florida's Rick Scott, Wisconsin Republicans are also trying to ban the words "climate change," like that is going to make the problem go away:
Discussing climate change is out of bounds for workers at a state agency in Wisconsin. So is any work related to climate change—even responding to e-mails about the topic.

A vote on Tuesday by Wisconsin’s Board of Commissioners of Public Lands, a three-member panel overseeing an agency that benefits schools and communities in the state, enacted the staff ban on climate change. “It’s not a part of our sole mission, which is to make money for our beneficiaries,” said State Treasurer Matt Adamczyk, a Republican who sits on the board. “That’s what I want our employees working on. That’s it. Managing our trust funds.”

Adamczyk raised his concern at a public meeting on Tuesday that the board’s executive director, Tia Nelson, had spent on-the-job time working on global warming. Nelson did indeed work on climate change a bit in 2007 and ’08—at the request of the governor. Wisconsin Governor Jim Doyle, who stepped down in 2011, appointed Nelson as co-chair of a global warming task force (PDF). “It honestly never occurred to me that being asked by a sitting governor to serve on a citizen task force would be objectionable,” she said.
Adding insult to injury, Adamczyk has regularly been harassing Tia Nelson, who is the daughter of Gaylord Nelson, the founder of Earth Day.

This type of willful ignorance isn't just a virtue for Wisconsin Republicans, but more of a necessity. If they had to face reality in regards to most topics - whether it be climate change, their failure to create family-supporting jobs or the rampant racism - they wouldn't have a chance.

Friday, April 17, 2015

Milwaukee Republican Refers To Hillary Clinton as "Ovary"



Milwaukee County Supervisor Deanna Alexander has already made a name for herself based on her blatant racism. First, she used taxpayer money to send out mailers wrongfully stating that voters needed a picture ID to vote in order to suppress the vote.

A month later, she issued a tweet mocking the death of Eric Garner, saying she bought a t-shirt that read, "Breathe Easy - Don't Break the Law."

Now Alexander has segued her way from open racism to self-loathing misogyny by deciding she would attack Hillary Clinton by referring to her as "Ovary":



Alexander only made matters worse when she tried to explain it away:
She notes that people come up with nicknames for politicians all the time. For instance, former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger was dubbed The Governator and ex-President Bill Clinton was known as Slick Willie to his critics -- and even some of his supporters.

Alexander, who is considered a possible candidate for the state Senate, said she found it interesting that people have jumped to the conclusion that she was referring to Hillary Clinton when she discussed "Ovary's campaign." She noted that Time Magazine ran a "sexist" article on the former secretary of state earlier this month by suggesting that Clinton is ready to run for president now that she's past menopause.

"So I'm certainly not the only one who has taken notice here," Alexander said. "While I would be excited to someday see a woman become president, I think that the potential to make history for simply being female is the only thing Hillary has going for her."
Comparing Alexander's blatantly gender-based smears to "Slick Willie" or "The Governator" is awfully weak tea, even for the intellectually dishonest Alexander. Then again, Alexander is the first one to go crying to the media of sexist attacks the minute anyone criticized her, even if she did do something unethical or even illegal.

For Alexander to go to such extremes to build up her name recognition for a future run at the state senate should give great hope to any and all future opponents.

Cross posted at Crooks and Liars

Thursday, April 16, 2015

All's Not Well That Ends With Wellness

Boss Abele Squarepants
Boss Abele is desperately trying to garner some positive attention to himself, even if it means issuing meaningless press releases about failing programs and calling them successes:
On April 23, Milwaukee County will receive an award from the Wellness Council of America (WELCOA) for its approach in developing programs that improve the health and wellbeing of County employees. WELCOA is widely recognized and highly regarded for its expertise and innovative approach to workplace wellness initiatives.

"We don't leave workplace wellness to chance," said County Executive Chris Abele. "We believe that providing employees with wellness opportunities not only improves personal health and wellbeing, but increases employee job satisfaction and morale as well. I am incredibly proud of these efforts and want to thank all of our employees whose participation makes this award possible. Creating a healthy workplace is good for employees and also leads to better outcomes for our community."

The wellness program at Milwaukee County was designed and implemented with best practices based on what's worked well in other organizations. Milwaukee County is being recognized after less than two years of operation and is well on its way to being a leader in how it engages employees around their wellness.
His shining example that it's working is that 300 people took fruit baskets. That's less than 7% of the county workforce. If he held himself to the same standards that he holds the workers, the only reward that would be given is a pink slip.

What Abele is trying to do is give workers incentive to stay with the county without actually paying them or giving them solid benefits.  What good is a wellness program when the workers or insurance poor and cannot afford to address any health concerns that might be discovered?

To make things worse, Abele is also failing at the worker attraction/retention aspect of things.  People are continuing to leave in droves, including division heads and his chief budgeteer, Josh Fudge, who announced on Thursday that he is leaving the county, even after Abele gave him a promotion and raise.  (At least that means no more Fudged budget numbers!)

If Abele wanted to have something to brag about, perhaps he should put his focus on running the county with common sense instead of cherry picked "best practices."  But then again, that would mean respecting and working with the employees, which is anathema to the boy prince.

The Senate GOP Honors John Wilkes Booth

By Jeff Simpson

Yesterday, on the 150th Anniversary of the Assassination of President Abraham Lincoln, the Senate GOP(which consists of our own Ron Johnson), honored John Wilkes Booth.


150 years ago today, the first Republican President, Abraham Lincoln was assassinated. America is forever indebted. pic.twitter.com/vhIE1k20e7— Senate Republicans (@Senate_GOPs) April 15, 2015



Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Tea Party Patriot Loves Him His Obamacare

Check out this video, via Crooks and Liars:



The money quote:
"But you know, the Republican Party, they haven't done nothing for me, man. Nothing," he remarked. "So, I'm leaning toward voting for Hillary unless something major comes up. I don't trust the Republicans anymore because they're wanting to repeal the Obamacare. And I don't want them to do that, man, because then I'll have to go to work again. My life's already planned out."
While I am glad that this man found the benefit to the Affordable Care Act, I am sad that it took his own personal health problems to see the light.

I have little doubt that if the man didn't have health issues, he'd be out there with the other Tea Party people complaining that it's just a hand out to lazy minorities or something like that.

The truly sad part is that the man - and those like him - don't see the irony in their situation.

The Dark Money Of The Bradley Foundation

Image courtesy of
One Wisconsin Now
Rick Cohen at Nonprofit Quarterly takes a look at the dark money group The Bradley Foundation and its head, Michael Grebe. Cohen starts with the hypocrisy of Grebe, who claims that he keeps his hyperpartisanship away from the group, when that is clearly not true:
A comment from Michael Grebe, the president and CEO of the Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation, got us thinking. In a book produced by John J. Miller and Karl Zinsmeister for the Philanthropy Roundtable on how “wise givers” can influence public policy (Agenda Setting: A Wise Giver’s Guide to Influencing Public Policy), Grebe talks about how he has tried to keep the ideologically very conservative Bradley Foundation out of partisan politics. “I’m very careful about this,” Grebe said to the Roundtable authors. “I keep everything separate. I don’t make political calls from the foundation office. I do that from home or from campaign offices. I won’t let the foundation get mixed up in partisan politics.”

Easier said than done in the case of the Bradley Foundation and Michael Grebe. The former counsel to the Republican National Committee and the chair or co-chair of Wisconsin governor Scott Walker’s election campaigns in 2010, 2012, and 2014, Grebe is also the now-retired partner of the Foley & Lardner law firm whose clientele has included major Republican organizations and candidates over the years, including the National Republican Senatorial Committee and the National Republican Congressional Committee, former Senator Jim DeMint (now heading the Heritage Foundation), and Senator Marco Rubio, the latter announcing his presidential candidacy just yesterday.

Grebe is also one of the founders and funders of the Philanthropy Roundtable and the current chair of its board of directors. Governor Walker is lionized in the Roundtable’s Wise Givers book as a “national leader at reining in runaway state spending” (helped by what he might have learned from the Bradley Foundation’s Refocus Wisconsin monograph in 2010) and the leader of the state’s “Budget Repair Bill” which “dramatically reformed state government…[by] trimming the power of public-employee unions.” Grebe doesn’t appear to be publicly involved in a Walker presidential bid and is not yet listed as involved in the Our American Revival PAC, which has been taking the place of—perhaps inappropriately and illegally, as asserted by the Campaign Legal Center and Democracy 21—an official Walker presidential exploratory committee. However, with the multiple arenas of the Bradley Foundation’s public policy funding of Wisconsin’s conservative political model dating back to the administration of Governor Tommy Thompson, including school choice policies and welfare reform, plus Grebe’s history of running Walker’s political campaigns, it would be surprising if Grebe stays aloof from a Walker presidential bid, should that officially emerge.
Then Cohen delves into some of the politicking done by the Bradley Foundation itself:
The Bradley Foundation is hardly alone in funding policy work that supports candidates, governors, and presidential candidates to its liking, a practice of foundations on both the right and the left. However, some of Bradley’s grantees have taken to a more direct role in electoral politics, sparking complaints from critics on the left. For example, according to Jack Craver, writing in the Capital Times, the MacIver Institute, a conservative think tank significantly funded by the Bradley Foundation, joined with the Koch-founded and Koch-funded Americans for Prosperity to run some very expensive ads touting Walker’s policies as he faced challenges in the 2011-2012 electoral cycle.

Another Bradley-connected electoral controversy involved the Bradley Foundation’s grant, admittedly small ($10,000), to the Einhorn Foundation, which ran billboards in minority neighborhoods of Milwaukee reading “Voter Fraud is a Felony.” The intent of the Einhorn-sponsored, Bradley-subsidized billboards was to intimidate minority voters, notable for the fact that Wisconsin’s legislature was considering and ultimately passed a Voter ID law in 2011 with Governor Walker’s support.

The Bradley Foundation has provided grant support to entities that are much more politically activist than your usual academic think-tank operations. Among Bradley’s sizable grantees have been the American Legislative Exchange Council (whose 501(c)(3) status has been questioned on a number of occasions concerning the work it does to pursue the political agendas of some of its corporate donors), the American Civil Rights Institute (founded by Ward Connerly, taking a prominent role in fighting against racial equity issues in California and in other states), and Wisconsin’s two State Policy Network think tanks (the MacIver Institute and the Wisconsin Policy Research Institute, both of which have been prominent in Walker administration initiatives on school choice, suppression of union collective bargaining rights, and voter ID laws). Other public policy institutions that have received significant grant support from the Milwaukee-based foundation include the Competitive Enterprise Institute, the American Conservative Union Foundation, the National Center for Policy Analysis, the Heritage Foundation, the Heartland Institute, the Young Americas Foundation, the Leadership Institute, the American Enterprise Institute, the Independent Women’s Forum, and the National Center for Policy Analysis.

The Bradley Foundation has also made grants directly and through nonprofit grantees to such conservative public intellectuals as Marvin Olasky, Lawrence Mead, George Kelling (who helped design New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani’s anti-crime strategies), Jason Turner, Thomas Sowell, and Robert George, some of whom actually entered government service to implement their theories, not simply advise, such as Turner in his role as chief implementer of Governor Tommy Thompson’s welfare reform initiative.
While Cohen's article is thorough and a good read, it is not comprehensive.

For example, he mentions George Will being the recipient of $250,000 from the Bradley Foundation and how Will went after the John Doe investigation into Scott Walker. Cohen doesn't mention that Will is also a member of the board of directors of the foundation since 2008.

Cohen also missed that other hacks, like Paul Gigot and Michael Barone are also recipients of the quarter million prizes.

Another recipient of the Bradley Foundation's largess was Jeb Bush, for his betrayal of his state's children. (Does anyone else see these dark money groups starting to hedge their bets?)

Education profiteering is a big thing for the Bradley Foundation, who proudly sponsored The Bell Curve, which claimed that "the poor - mostly African Americans - are generally incapable of benefiting from an education."

It should also be noted that the Bradley Foundation is the main supporter for the misnamed front group Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty (WILL). Scot Ross of One Wisconsin Now explained WILL best when he said:
“The Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty is not simply a conservative, public interest law firm. It is a virtual extension of the political apparatus surrounding Gov. Scott Walker, engaging in ‘issue litigation’ to advance and protect his interests.”
If anyone wanted a reason to overturn Citizens United, Michael Grebe and his Bradley Foundation would be one of the poster children for it.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

The “Do it Yourself” Sheriff strikes again in Milwaukee

On Sunday, April, 12th, a 2 year old child was accidentally killed after running into traffic on Milwaukee’s North side.  As awful as that tragedy was, the driver, who rightly stopped due to the accident and was waiting for Police to arrive, was tried and executed by an unknown assailant on the scene.  In addition, a 15 year old, who was at the scene,was also murdered.  

Vigilante justice takes root in Milwaukee. You would think we would have professional law enforcement in Milwaukee that would speak out and discourage citizens from acting as their own police. That sounds like a good principle for public safety that most law enforcement officials would back. 

Well, not in Milwaukee, as one of the main voices in law enforcement has, in the past, actually encouraged citizens to not wait for police. Yes, you read that correctly. This leader in law enforcement communicated to the public that it’s time they think about arming themselves and taking things into their own hands. It doesn’t take any professionalism or training to asses a situation when you can just do it yourself.

Here’s an excerpt from Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke’s radio and web campaign which aired across Milwaukee County.  
"I'm Sheriff David Clarke and I want to talk to you about something personal: your safety. It's no longer a spectator sport; I need you in the game. But are you ready? With officers laid off and furloughed, simply calling 911 and waiting is no longer your best option. You can beg for mercy from a violent criminal, hide under the bed, or you can fight back. But are you prepared? Consider taking a certified safety course in handling a firearm so youcan defend yourself until we get there. You have a duty to protect yourself and your family."
You might think that the Sheriff only meant in the context of self-defense but as a public official communicating the general public, the sprit of his advice encourages people not to wait for 911. Grab yourself a gun and act as your own police. Do it yourself policing. When communicating to the public,the broader implications of everything that is said needs to be considered carefully. It’s wildly irresponsible public messaging at best and encouraged murder at worst.

It is reported that the driver is a father to 4 young children – a complete family shattered by vigilante justice, for which the Sheriff has publicly championed.  The “Do it Yourself” Sheriff strikes again in Milwaukee.  

Scott Walker: Ich Bin Ein Dummkopf

While everyone - and I do mean everyone - has been atwitter about Hillary Clinton's announcing her presidential bid, Scott Walker has been taking a taxpayer-funded jaunt through Europe. His obvious goal is to build some foreign policy chops in his own presidential bid.

As one might expect, Walker couldn't do this without embarrassing himself:
Scott Walker is learning that foreign policy and trade is a touchy business. Drop just one letter, as the likely Republican presidential candidate did Tuesday in Germany, and you can get laughed at.

In a speech about transatlantic trade at an industrial fair, Walker called the Hannovermesse the “Hannover-mess,” incorrectly dropping the “e” in his pronunciation and drawing some chuckles from his audience of about 100 German executives. The compound noun is translated as Hannover Fair.

It wasn't exactly an “Ich bin ein Berliner” moment. That's the phase President John F. Kennedy used in a famous Cold War speech in 1963 in Berlin that legend has sometimes incorrectly held could be translated as “I am a jelly doughnut,” instead of his intended meaning of solidarity with the then-divided city.
This, of course, hasn't been Walker's first blunder in a foreign language. There is the time he wrote to Attorney Frank Gimbel and signed off with "Thank you again and Molotov" One just shudders at the thought of what might happen when Walker does a campaign tour through Israel later this year.

The fact that Walker doesn't do well with foreign languages shouldn't surprise anyone. The man can't even handle English as evidenced by an essay he wrote in tribute to Abraham Lincoln, another great president that Walker has nothing in common with:

Walker the historian gives us a comment on Lincoln's most famous speech, and misspells a great man's name twice in the process:
"At (sic) his Gettysburg Address, Lincoln famously said, 'Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal' This was not just lip service, as evidenced from the words of contemporaries like Frederick Douglas (sic), former slave and early civil rights leader. Douglas (sic) said Lincoln was 'the first great man that I talked with in the United States freely who in no single instance reminded me of the difference between himself and myself, of the difference of color.'"
BUT WAIT, THERE'S MORE!
Walker's screed against the Democrats, disguised as a tribute to Lincoln, goes on to say, "This sediment (sic) that all men are is equal is evidenced in the Republican Party's current platform of equal taxes on all, and opportunity for all regardless of race, gender, or age ... Contrast that with the tenants (sic) of the (sic) Barack Obama and the Democrat (sic) party ... "

ICYMI - Robin Vos

By Jeff Simpson

In case you missed this money quote:


Robin Vos, who is said to be considering a gubernatorial bid in 2018, 


Robin Vos for Governor


We would have a different First Lady every week.


Vos has done such an amazing job at home, why wouldn't we want to give him the whole state?
Image result for robin vos litjens'

Christian Schneider - Really, Really Wrong


 Image result for christian schneider guns

By Jeff Simpson 

Recently Journal Sentinel columnist and Michael Grebe employee Christian Schneider wrote this:

 People didn't just start shooting each other when the law passed in June of 2011 — at the very least, those who want to carry must now receive training, which makes everyone safer.
Of course everyone has heard the story from this weekend:

 A gunman apparently enraged that a van had struck a 2-year-old boy Sunday on Milwaukee's northwest side not only "assassinated" the driver of the van — in the words of Mayor Tom Barrett — but cut down the toddler's brother, who had rushed to the scene.Rasheed T. Chiles, 15, had been attending a party at a nearby house with his brother, 2-year-old Damani T. Terry.
Archie Brown Jr., 40, was driving the van about 5:10 p.m. Sunday in the 4600 block of N. 48th St., near Wahl Park, when he hit Damani, who had darted into the road, according to Milwaukee police. Brown immediately jumped out and — by all accounts — was grieving and upset as he stood over the body.
A gunman shot and killed Brown, according to police. "Someone got angry," Barrett said. "Someone took a gun and basically assassinated this gentleman."

Archie Brown Jr. must not have read Christian Schneider's column, or else he would know how safe he actually is.  Schneider could read his column at Mr. Brown's funeral so his whole family would know how safe he is.

Christian Schneider is not just wrong, he is dead wrong.   As he asks at the end of his column(slightly edited):

 The question is, how wrong does Christian Schneider have to be before we stop believing him?

Republicans Drink Kool Aid, Believe In Pixie Dust

Scott Walker is floating an idea out there to tie tuition hikes at the University of Wisconsin to the rate of inflation.

Owen Robinson, aghast at the thought, clutched his pearls and swooned back on his fainting couch at the very notion:
What I don’t like about this proposal is that it assumes that the current tuition is appropriate compared to the average Wisconsinite’s other relative costs. Is it? Could it cost less and still provide the same or better education? Just because a family’s other expenses increase, does that automatically mean that tuition should go up by the same amount? Why? Why shouldn’t the legislature’s efforts go into driving down the price of tuition relative to a family’s overall expenditures as a tuition freeze does over time? Wouldn’t that be preferable to locking in automatic tuition increases every year? And yes… I assume that if this is in place that UW would jack up tuition by the rate of inflation every year if they were able to.
One thing you should know about Old Lady Robinson is that he grew up in Texas, where plantation economics has been drilled in their heads for generations, thus he has a skewed sense of reality.  That also explains why he is gullible enough to think that austerity works and that everything Americans for (the Kochs') prosperity is gospel truth.

That tea-flavored Kool Aid is powerful stuff.

What Robinson forgets (or ignores) in his greed is the fact that universities used electricity, natural gas water, and other essentials just like everyone else.  He also forgets (or ignores) that the faculty at the universities are staffed with the people who have families that also see their cost goes up.

Apparently Robinson has drunk so much of the Kool Aid that he thinks that universities - and their staff - all use free pixie dust to light and heat their buildings, power their vehicles and keep their staff fed and clothed.

What Robinson can't admit to himself, much less anyone else, is that maybe if he, his company and his church carried their fair share of the tax burden, his taxes wouldn't have to go up at all.  In fact, they would actually go down.

Before Robinson could even begin to comprehend this, he'd have to get off the hard stuff first.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Scott Walker Reacts To Hillary Clinton's Presidential Bid Announcement

He's taking it really very hard:



Oh! My bad! That's a little boy named Zeke.

Walker didn't handle it as well as Zeke.

H/T Alan Colmes

Scott Walker Reinterpreted

By Jeff Simpson

I (and probably you) received this fundraising email from Scott Walker yesterday,  The unmitigated gall it took to write this is impressive.  Needed changes(in red) were done courtesy of us at Cogdis at no charge to the taxpayers of WI.

Jeff,

Hillary Clinton has finally made it official ... she will seek the Democrat nomination for President of the United States.

Technically she just announced today, but in reality she has been running for nearly a decade.  (which actually beats Scott, who has been running for 25 years.) 

Despite a meticulously crafted new persona (switching positions seems to be the way to go), perpetual candidate (says career politician Scott Walker who has never spent a day in the private sector) Hillary Clinton represents all of the failed policies that Washington has been churning out for too long.
Washington isn't working.
Wisconsin is.


Please stand with a proven conservative today. Support Friends of Scott Walker with $10, $35, $50, $100, or even $250 to show your support for our conservative successes and vision for the future(send me lots of money).

In Wisconsin, our big bold conservative reforms have worke(to put us into a bigger deficit hole than before we took office). Our unemployment rate is down to 4.8% in 2015 from a peak of 9.2% in 2010 and our hard-working families have more money in their wallets(despite the fact I was a miserable failure at my main campaign promise of creating jobs). 

Fiscal order has been restored(not really but no one in the media would dare call me on this lie). Hope has been renewed(No it really hasn't, Wisconsin's middle class is shrinking more than any other states).

If you support the Wisconsin Way, contribute $10 or $100 or $1,000 or another amount right now(send me money).

Having served as Secretary of State for President Obama, Hillary is part of the Washington problem. She thinks bigger government is better government(like forced ultrasounds and DNA collection). You and I know better.

We can do better.

We will do better.

If you agree that we don't need another four years of the failed Obama-Clinton agenda(send me money) ...

And that we need to look outside Washington for solutions to the challenges facing our nation (send me money)...

Then please continue to stand strong with us today(send me money).

Scott Walker

P.S. Brace yourself: On the heels of her "big announcement," the news will be "all Hillary, all the time" for the coming weeks. It's more important than ever to promote our conservative principles. With your continued support, we will continue to do just that.(send me money)

Reince Priebus Calls Hillary Clinton "Untrustworthy"



Reince Priebus, Chief Liar of the National Republican Party, went on television with Bob Schieffer and proved that irony and hypocrisy is not dead among Republicans:
SCHIEFFER: Welcome back to FACE THE NATION with the 2016 campaign now off and running with Hillary Clinton getting in the race officially today, Marco Rubio will announce later this week, we are going to start with the chairman of the Republican Party now, Reince Priebus.

Thank you very much for coming.

REINCE PRIEBUS, CHAIRMAN, RNC: Congratulations, Bob.

SCHIEFFER: Well, thank you so much.

You know, we showed a little clip of the latest Republican ad and you went right after Hillary Clinton even before she announced.

Is there a concern that you might, you know, that it might backfire here and make her, you know, people sympathetic to her with all of this starting so soon?

PRIEBUS: I don't think so, I mean, she has kind of portrayed this air of inevitability. I think if you look at the facts of the case, which is where I really would like to stay as chairman of the party, you know, if you look at the facts of the scandal that surrounds her, you look at the facts of the recent polling, where a majority of people in battleground states say that she is untrustworthy, when you look at the fact she has 100 percent name recognition --

SCHIEFFER: A majority --

PRIEBUS: -- majority of the people polled, in Colorado, Virginia, Iowa, Florida, said she is untrustworthy.

When you took -- you take the fact that she has 100 percent name ID, this is an important fact for people to understand. She has pure saturation.

But yet she is losing to a number of our candidates in those battleground states that have a third of her name ID. So if you were me and you were chairman of the national party and you had someone on the ticket that would unite your party, would help you raise a lot of money and help you recruit a ton of volunteers, you would want nothing more than Hillary Clinton to be on the other side.

SCHIEFFER: Let's talk about some of the things you heard -- and we were talking this morning about this -- the Clinton Foundation and so forth and making contributions from foreign countries like Saudi Arabia.

PRIEBUS: Sure.

SCHIEFFER: Is that a legitimate criticism of her?

PRIEBUS: Well, of course it is and now she is going to be under even more scrutiny about where she got the money from, if she used her position as secretary of state, some of which is why these e-mails are so important, why 60 percent of Americans are saying that what she did in regard to her e-mails is inappropriate. These are things we want to know.

And in fact, I have a hard drive for you, Bob. It's at stophillary.org and it's the Clinton e-mail files, a little bit of fun but we have to do a lot of things to point out the fact that the facts of the case are such that Hillary Clinton is quite frankly someone that the American people can't trust.

And so we are going to stick to the facts and the facts are, people have a lot of questions about who she was on planes with, who she was talking to and how perhaps she used her position as secretary of state to get money into the Clinton --

SCHIEFFER: You know, I was sitting here, as I was listening to your answer about the contributions from Saudi Arabia. They do go to a foundation. She can't use that money personally.

But it also occurs to me, a lot of your candidates and the Democrats as well are going to be taking campaign contributions that we are never going to know where they come from, but now you can give these unbelievable amounts of money without any accounting of where the money comes from.

PRIEBUS: The difference is, all those other entities, super PACs, parties, individual candidates, they can't take money from kings of Saudi Arabia and Morocco and Oman and Yemen and that is what Hillary Clinton did. And so she is going to have to account for this money.

And she can't have it both ways. She can't pay women less in her Senate office and claim that she is for equal pay, she can't say --

SCHIEFFER: We don't know she did that.

PRIEBUS: Well, the facts don't bear that out, the facts show that she didn't pay women an equal amount of money in her Senate office but she also can't talk about these things as if she is a champion and then take money from Saudi Arabia that has a record of abuse of women across the world.

The point is, if we stick to the facts -- and that's where we want to be -- then we are going to be able to make the case to the American people that she has a product that isn't worth buying and then at the same time we have to make the case for our own party as well.

So it is not just about Hillary, it has to be about both things.
The brazenness of Priebus is just breathtaking.

He rips on Clinton over her emails and tries to raise the specter of improper fundraising when he himself is tied up in Scott Walker's email scandal and illegal politicking. By the way, Walker's first email scandal was so big that it took up seven flash drives, not just one.

It should also be noted that Priebus went out of his way not to mention Wisconsin, home state of his BFF, Walker, where Clinton leads Walker in the polls.

Although Priebus' hypocrisy is breathtaking, it shouldn't be surprising. He is just following the policy of his party - It's Only OK If A Republican Does It.

Cross posted at Crooks and Liars

Zeus Gets Greedy

By Jeff Simpson 

Zeus Rodriguez, cousin to Assemblywoman Jessie Rodriguez (R-Scott Jensen), has decided to go for the money.    

Until recently, Rodriguez was president of Milwaukee's St. Anthony School, the country's largest K-12 Catholic school system.  

The standards are so high at St. Anthony School that they hired Mr. Rodriguez to run their school, despite having zero experience in education.  

He did however, have experience, and a huge conflict of interest, in running a "non-profit" Hispanics for School Choice

How someone could run the "largest Catholic school system in the country and also run a "non-profit" especially where the two are not exactly equal is a question that needs to be asked. 

A quick look at the results and that question is easily answered.   

Rodriguez greatly increased the numbers of students attending St. Anthony.  


He was hired by St. Anthony a year later, in 2011. Since then the school has grown from about 1,476 students in four buildings to almost 2,000 students in five buildings, plus 280 employees.
Every child in the school means more and more dollars to pay for "presidents".   However the one thing that Mr, Rodriguez did not deliver is results or a high quality education(despite making that his priority(wink wink)).   


 As president, Rodriguez said, he aimed to focus on improvement."Our model was: Let's get aggressive. Accountability. Testing. Internal reviews. Let's improve," he said.

Like most urban schools serving predominantly low-income students in Milwaukee, overall state test scores for St. Anthony were and still are low. In the fall of 2010, just 7% of children could read proficiently, and about 10% could do math on grade level.

State data shows they jumped considerably by the fall of 2013: 12% of children were proficient in reading; 19% were proficient in math. That beat the average math proficiency score for all voucher schools but was the same for reading.

St. Anthony scores about the same as Milwaukee Public Schools; score comparisons vary, depending on whether all students or just low-income students are compared

While they have improved very slightly, I would guess much of that improvement came from the extra 500+ kids they sold snake oil too and stole from the public schools.   

88% of the kids in his schools are NOT proficient in reading and 81% of his students are NOT proficient in math,   In most schools that is a very solid F.    

It could possibly be blamed partly on the massive turnover at the school or it could be blamed on hiring a president to run a school who is a college drop out with zero experience in anything but selling Snake Oil.   

Mr Rodriguez had this to say:


"I feel like I've been called to effect change for underserved kids," Rodriguez said.

The problem is we see by the (lack of ) results he has delivered  for his kids and the fact he is now expanding his reach into other states (like Wisconsin), run by anti education far right ideologues, that maybe he was misquoted.   

This seems a more fitting quote for Mr. Rodriguez:


"I feel like I have been called to collect change(and dollars) by taking advantage of underserved kids".   
 




Saturday, April 11, 2015

Sheriff David Clarke: Put Semi-Automatic Rifles On The U.S. Seal

Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke was overdue for bringing embarrassment upon himself and Milwaukee, so he made up for lost time while speaking at the annual NRA (National Redneck Association) convention this weekend:


From Raw Story:

“You know, the one with the American bald eagle holding an olive branch in one claw and arrows in the other,” he said. “We should take those arrows out of the eagle’s claws and replace them with a semi-automatic rifle, preferably one that shoots M-855 ammunition.”

The seal, which was first used in 1782, is kept in the Secretary of State’s office. According to the State Department, the olive branch and the arrows “denote the power of peace & war.”

Clarke, who accused single-parent black households of being the “number one” cause of black fatalities at the hands of police earlier this year, also described himself as a “bitter clinger” — a reference to President Barack Obama’s statement in 2008 regarding voters who “get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren’t like them or anti-immigrant sentiment.”

“There is nothing else I would rather hold in my hand when fighting government tyranny than a Bible in my left hand that I use to swear to uphold the Constitution, and in my right hand a Winchester rifle, a symbol of freedom and liberty in the United States of America,” Clarke said.
Of course, this is coming from the same nimrod that thought it would be a good idea to use public tax dollars to push his pro-gun agenda, which ended up with the predictable results of people using his ads as an excuse for their own criminal behavior.

Expecting rational discourse from someone like Clarke is just asking too much.

The Uncertainty of Scott Walker


Image result for scott walker crying

By Jeff Simpson 

It was not very long ago that Scott Walker had this to say:

Asked Thursday about new numbers showing Wisconsin lagging in job growth, Gov. Scott Walker pointed to the uncertainty he said business owners felt because of the political tumult that rocked Wisconsin early in his term.

Meanwhile, his critics said the governor's policies had created a drag on growth.

"The first year we had a lot of protests in the state," Walker said, during an appearance in Milwaukee to promote business growth in the city. "We had two years', almost, worth of recalls. A lot of employers here I think can relate to the fact (that) uncertainty is one of the biggest challenges for employers big or small or anywhere in between. There was a lot of uncertainty. The good news is that's passed."

Fast Forward to Scott Walker's second term and in Wisconsin,  GeminiCares president and owner Kathleen Rublee has said she is closing the doors and laying off 701 Wisconsinites.  

Why?

GeminiCares president and owner Kathleen Rublee issued a statement April 7 in which she said the state budget for long-term care of the elderly and disabled has been under the strain of increased costs and increased numbers of state residents needing care.
State officials have sought to make services cost-efficient, but that “put financial strains on those entities which are involved in this system, managed care organizations, county agencies and provider agencies,” Rublee said.
“This along with the uncertainty of the long-term care system of service provision due to changes proposed by Governor Walker weighed heavily into the decision to cease operations,” Rublee said. “Governor Walker has a large task before him as he attempts to address the significant cost pressures of long term care in Wisconsin while also attempting to maintain quality care.” 

The uncertainty of Scott Walker's incompetence and ability to govern are causing this company to close.  

Whose job is next while Scott Walker spends all of his days campaigning?

Never mind, we know who is next.  Teacher after teachers....

Image result for scott walker bald spot

Friday, April 10, 2015

Three More Wisconsin Communities Vote to Amend the U.S. Constitution

Madison, WI (April 8, 2015) ­ On Tuesday, April 7th, three communities voted in favor of amending the U.S. Constitution to make clear that money is not speech and that only real people should have inalienable Constitutional rights. This would reverse the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision, which opened the floodgates to big money in elections.
All of the referenda passed with striking majorities: Watertown (69%), Evansville (80%), and the Town of Reedsburg (63%).
This brings the total number of Wisconsin communities that have called for an amendment to 57. In total, over 2.4 million people (41% of Wisconsinites) live in these jurisdictions. Across the country, 16 state legislatures have voted for an amendment, as well as over 650 towns, villages, cities and other organizations.
After the votes were counted, Brad Geyer, the resolution campaign leader in Watertown said: “Instead of representative government serving the people, increasingly, we have corruption, conflicts of interest and bribery. A handful of people on the US Supreme Court have handed power to the highest bidders. We will overcome this corruption when people step up in enough numbers to show our leaders our true will.”
Polls have shown widespread disapproval of Citizens United across the political spectrum. According to an August 2014 poll, more than three quarters (78%) of voters feel that reducing the influence of money in politics is an important issue.
“I’m very pleased and excited that we got our message across to the people of Evansville,” said Fran Zell, campaign organizer. “We worked hard, but also the people were ready to hear our message. This movement has gained so much momentum across the state. People believing in their power to change things is the crux of the matter.”
“When will the legislators in Madison listen to the people of Wisconsin?” said Bill Waser, leader of the petition drive in the Town of Reedsburg. “I spent over 10 years in our Navy and never once did I hear at morning muster “AT&T, GM, or Walmart. How can you say that a corporation, union, or other nonprofit organization is a person? Sure, made up of people, but so is a city… is a city a person? It’s ridiculous.
Democracy is a living, breathing ideal that needs to be nourished and worked on. Now is time to right this wrong! Stand with your fellow citizens across the land and get this referendum passed in your town, village, or city. We’re here to help you.”
Move To Amend is a non-partisan, grassroots movement. For more information: http://wimta.org