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Sunday, July 31, 2011

Janesville Newspaper Rips Through Unions With Anonymity

For the past few weeks, the politically active Janesville Gazette has ramped up the usual highly caustic anti-union anti-teacher statements in their "professionally vetted" anonymous Sound Off newspaper columns. The recent upsurge in the newspaper's union centered articles and anonymous comments seems to draw on their reckless conservative assumptions that because the media's focus have become somewhat displaced by much larger and pressing issues than unions in the upcoming Wisconsin recall elections, they figure now is a good time to turn full attention back on them and re-energize their hardened conservative base with recycled anti-union propaganda.

Sorry, the newspaper's "anonymous" columns are not published online.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Corp Hack Ron Johnson Pegging Work and Health Safety to Unemployment Levels

Ron Johnson must of had his thinking cap ironed and tightly screwed on when he devised this highly poisonous hyper-partisan piece of class war legislation tying health and safety regulations to unemployment rates, and high unemployment rates to President Obama. This ought to catapult the senator's fear-mongering politics and lamebrain reputation right up there with the vacant Sarah Palin and empty-suited Paul Ryan.

Ron Johnson Press Release Excerpt:
Today Senator Ron Johnson (WI) introduced S. 1438, the Regulation Moratorium and Job Preservation Act. The bill calls for a moratorium on burdensome federal regulations until the national unemployment rate falls to 7.7 percent – below where it was when President Obama was sworn into office.

“With unemployment at 9.2 percent, and employers nationwide fearful about the Obama agenda, regulators should take a pause.

What this screaming imbecile does is tell businesses that if they start hiring, those dreaded government regulators that they supposedly claim stifles profits will come back poking around and boobytrap your business. Talk about an incentive.

Act Excerpt:
8 (a) IN GENERAL.— No agency may take any significant regulatory action, until the Bureau of Labor Statistics average of monthly unemployment rates for any quarter beginning after the date of enactment of this Act is equal to or less than 7.7 percent.

Keep unemployment high and you will be rewarded. Stay fearful of Obama's agenda for driving high unemployment AND stay fearful of Obama's government regulators IF you make any attempt to bring unemployment down. Whatever you do, you don't want to do anything that could help re-elect that Kenyan Muslim Socialist back into the White House, is the general message.

Act Excerpt:

The court shall award reasonable attorney fees and costs to a substantially prevailing small business in any civil action arising under this Act. A party qualifies as substantially prevailing even without obtaining a final judgment in its favor if the agency changes its position as a result of the civil action.

Here, Johnson takes this even further by legislating taxpayer dollars to cover any damages that may arise from his dysfunctional legislation, but only for the business regardless of judgment. No sympathy for the victim of corporate greed from this fine, fine senator.

I couldn't make this stuff up if I tried.

Democurmudgeon asks What is wrong with this guy?

Video: Former Reagan/Bush Aide Bartlett Recites GOP Debt History

In just a few short minutes during an interview with Chris Matthews, Bruce Bartlett, a former advisor to Reagan and Poppy Bush, dissected and summarized Bush era "conservatives" who took a surplus from Clinton and turned it into a deficit.

In the video below, Bartlett said when Bush took office we had a national debt of about $6 trillion and at the time, the CBO was projecting a $6 trillion surplus which would have paid off the debt providing Bush and his rubber stamping band of idiots DID NOTHING. Instead they added to that with $3 trillion in tax cuts, lost another $3 trillion in revenue due to the poor economy, a Medicare drug benefit and two unfunded wars. So instead of paying off the debt, we wind up with $12 trillion of debt at the end of the Bush era, with another $3 to $4 trillion in damage control deficits on the way. That they did all this with seven easy one-line “clean” debt ceiling increases for Bush is now apparently irrelevant. Don't pay no mind to any of that. Instead, they now want everyone to keep their eyes on the "socialist" in the White House.

"The Republicans keep saying that the tax cuts are the key to prosperity. Well the 2000's is evidence that that's not true."

Absolutely! After ten years of Bush Club-for-Growth voodoo economics and tax cuts, shouldn't the economy be booming about right now?

Bartlett finishes up with, "I think a good chunk of the republican caucus is either stupid, crazy, ignorant or craven cowards who are desperately afraid of the tea party people - and rightly so."

Watch it.

The Motley Cow, “Reagan adviser Bruce Bartlett destroys Republican talking point.”

The Democurmudgeon's video library is loaded with a nice collection of excerpts and clips from often overlooked interviews like this one with Bartlett. Check 'em out.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Photo: Eagle Caught On Watch At National Cemetery

Forget politics for a moment. You only have to be an American to appreciate this photo.

Frank Glick, an amateur photographer, took this photo at Fort Snelling National Cemetery. When he recorded the shot, he never could have guessed how much it was going to mean to the widow of the World War II veteran buried there.

The eagle had landed on the grave of Sgt. Maurice Ruch. Read full story here.

This was sent in by a friend.

Wasserman-Schultz and Boehner Agree! Tea Party Wants Chaos

Politico Excerpt:
Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.), chair of the Democratic National Committee, said Wednesday that House Republicans are trying to impose “dictatorship” through their tactics in the debt-ceiling negotiations. She said the GOP rhetoric could “spark panic and chaos,” which she called “potentially devastating” to the economy.

Think Progress Excerpt:
House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) said today that some members of his own caucus who are refusing to agree to a compromise debt ceiling deal are hoping to unleash “chaos” and thus force the White House and Senate Democrats to make bigger concessions than they’re already offering.

Welcome to Fitzwalkerstan.

The Gimmicky Paul Ryan On Harry Reid's Debt Reduction Proposal

“Well first of all Reid’s has a big gimmick in it — the war gimmick. We’re assuming that Afghanistan is going to be at surge levels for 10 years and then if we have a pullout that saves us a bunch of money — that’s really a gimmick.”
-- Rep. Paul Ryan

Let's spin the gimmicky rhetoric around to the other foot.

“Well first of all Ryan's Path to Prosperity has a big gimmick in it — the Medicare gimmick. We’re assuming that Medicare is going to be at surge levels for 10 years and then if we have a pullout for those under 55, that saves us a bunch of money — that’s really a gimmick,”

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Video Shows What To Expect At The DMV For Your Voter ID

While taking her son to the DMV to apply for his free Voter ID card, a mom thought a few things didn't seem quite right so she turned her camera on.

Three items jump out to me. First, and not surprisingly at the beginning is the long line of people at the DMV. The only problem with that is if Scott Walker makes good on his promise to shut down up to ten facilities, that line will only get longer. Second is the excessive use of authority when a DMV worker questions the activity level of the applicant's bank statement. The bank statement was used to help prove residency and the applicant needed to provide a statement from the last 90 days, according to DOT regulations. Activity level should be irrelevant. Perhaps it was just a rare slip by the worker. Third is how the system at the DMV seems to deliberately "play dumb" in order to NOT trick the applicant out of $28.

Watch for it:


The only difference between a state ID and voter ID is $28. That's right. Although both IDs and applications are identical in every way, they are different depending only on how you fill out the application.

"It's not hard, but many people won't know that they have to ask. A Wisconsin ID card costs $28. The DMV uses the same form for the regular ID and the Voter ID. If someone shows up and applies for an ID, and doesn't notice the little check box at the bottom of the form, they'll automatically be charged $28. Some people will pay the $28 (which would constitute a poll tax if they were applying for a Voter ID), and some people will leave without getting an ID.
-- Comment posted by madtowngirl2

Highlight added.

I give plenty of credit to the creator of this video. This is exactly the kind of citizen journalism and involvement we need more of. It should also be noted that the creator of the video makes the point that she is not blaming the DMV workers. They are only doing their jobs.

Blogging Blue - Voter ID at the DMV – here’s how Republicans want things to be in 2012

DailyKos - Bank Account Doesn't show enough "activity to get Voter ID

Democurmudgeon - The sudden need to close 10 DMVs - Voter Suppression?

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Reminder - Social Gathering and Discussion In Newville

Just wanted to invite everybody to our upcoming social gathering this Wednesday, July 27, 7 PM at Fins in Newville.

Fins Bar and Grill
723 Ellendale Road, Edgerton, WI 53534

Hopefully the weather will cooperate and we can meet outside by the Rock River.

We will also be talking about starting a chapter/regular meeting of the group “Drinking Liberally” that currently has chapters nationwide, including in Milwaukee & Madison.

"Drinking Liberally" doesn't mean a lot or necessarily alcohol :-).

Hope to see you there!
Chuck Ogg

After Voter ID, Walker Proposes Closing Ft. Atkinson and 9 other DMVs

After signing a law disenfranchising ID-less Voters, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker is working on finalizing a plan to close as many as 10 offices where people can obtain driver’s licenses and state photo IDs for voting at the polls.

Think progress Excerpt:
One Democratic lawmaker said Friday it appeared the decisions were based on politics, with the department targeting offices for closure in Democratic areas and expanding hours for those in Republican districts. [...] Rep. Andy Jorgensen, D-Fort Atkinson, called on the state Department of Transportation to reconsider its plants to close the Fort Atkinson DMV center. The department plans to expand by four hours a week the hours of a center about 30 minutes away in Watertown. [...]

Walker figures, what's an extra 30 minutes of driving to Wisconsin's working poor, disabled and seniors? Brown bag it.

This week however, Ft. Atkinson will have a unique opportunity to let Walker know just how they feel about losing their DMV.

As noticed at the Lost Continent:

A [...] reception awaits Gov. Walker in Fort Atkinson on July 28th, where he is scheduled to dedicate a building used to improve the lot of the disabled, a group he is normally attempting to render even more destitute through his policies. Anyone interested in unwelcoming the governor can do so starting around 5:00 PM at 100 East Cramer in Fort Atkinson. His Highness is scheduled to speak at 7:00PM

Monday, July 25, 2011

Walker Nets A Whopper On State's Jobs Numbers

Remember last week when Scott Walker trumpeted the state's jobs growth as being half the jobs created in the entire country?

"It's incredibly important to put that in perspective," Walker said. "To have 9,500 net new jobs in the state at a time when the country saw just 18,000 net new jobs all across the country is incredibly good news, and it's driven by the rebirth of tourism in the state."

A "rebirth" in tourism (low-wage seasonal jobs) is usually driven by increased confidence and optimism from outside the state, but that's another and different angle here. Instead, xoff at Uppity Wisconsin pointed out that the state of Massachusetts also accounted for more than half the nation's job growth (+10,400). But in addition, Texas nearly doubled the nation's jobs growth all on its own with 32,000 new jobs, California (+28,800), Michigan (+18,000), and Minnesota (+13,200) also accounted for more than half of the nation's job growth. What are they? Chopped liver? But how could this be? Of course the key word is "net" jobs nationally.

But as typical for today's self-aggrandizing claw-down-the-other-guy political posturing, that's a perspective Governor Walker thought incredibly important to leave out.

Read full story here Also, check out the comments.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Norway, 'This Seems Like a Madman's Work'

The 32-year-old Norwegian man arrested for gunning down children on a holiday island and detonating a car bomb in Oslo has been named locally as Anders Behring Breivik.

The Nightmare In Norway Excerpt:
Anders Breivik, the arrested suspect of the horrendous murder spree in Norway, "opposed multiculturalism and Muslim immigrants in Norway" and "championed opposition to 'Cultural Marxism,' a right-wing anti-Semitic concept developed primarily by William Lind of the US-based Free Congress Foundation, but also the Lyndon LaRouche network," says Chip Berlet, a senior analyst at Political Research Associates.

Friday, July 22 was an unimaginable dark day for the people of Norway. A horrible bombing in Oslo was followed later in the day by a murderous shooting spree at a Labor Party youth camp on the island of Utoya. All told, the death toll may reach as high as 100. The bombing was an apparent attempt on the life of Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg.

* IREHR reported late Friday evening that "New evidence has surfaced indicating that Breivik appears to be a fan of the Tea Party's favorite Islamophobe, Pamela Geller.

* The website Little Green Footballs reports that he's been posting links to Geller's website Atlas Shrugged since at least 2009."

* Time magazine reported that "Norwegian police describe Breivik as a conservative, right-wing extremist and a Christian fundamentalist.

Crooks & Liars Excerpt:
The picture that's emerging is of an ordinary right-wing man stoked into anger by theories about "Cultural Marxism" that originated on the anti-Semitic far right but have in recent years been spreading into more mainstream venues, promoted by the likes of Andrew Breitbart, among others.

Breivik had recently posted a political YouTube video outlining why “Christian soldiers” and “cultural conservatives” should rise up against “multiculturalism.” In the video, he invokes Masonic lore, the Knights Templar's, and the Crusades for his inspiration and ties Marxists and Muslims together as a common enemy.

The video, which was taken down and subsequently posted on other YouTube accounts, also features President Obama as part of a threat Breivik referred to as “Cultural Marxist Deconstruction.”

DailyKos - Right-wing Defends Breivik's Work

Breivik's "Solidprinciples" Facebook Page. (Note: Some consider this Facebook page a fake)

Knights Templar 2083 by Anders Behring Breivik - Oslo killer

Friday, July 22, 2011

Rip Rap

The Conservatives' ALEC Philosophy: Everything Related to Government Should Be Demonized, Starved or Privatized

Alternet - Excerpt:
"Any force in civil society that contests the right of business to grab all social surplus, and to treat people like roadkill and the earth like a sewer, should be crushed."

Koch Brothers Exposed.Com

Prince Spiebus demonstrates the latest GOP hand sign for flipping the finger to working poor and middle-class wage earners.

Conservatives: Unlike Wisconsin State Senate, Assembly Not Afraid To Punish Unemployed and Needy Wisconsin Families

The Political Environment Assembly Republicans In Wisconsin Make Unemployed Play Another Waiting Game

A vicious Abuse Of power

On Wednesday night the Wisconsin State Assembly voted to approve legislative and congressional redistricting maps that Representative Fred Kessler called, “the most vicious abuse of partisan power that I have ever seen in the Wisconsin Legislature, and I’ve been here since 1961.”

Comment On Wisconsin Redistricting

Comment at JS Online
tomkrag -- "Republicans have cleverly, cynically packed Democratic voters, who are more than 50% of Wisconsin voters into 40% of the Assembly districts.

Is there anything Wisconsin Republicans Push Without using Dirty Tricks?

Democurmudgeon Republicans to Push for Early Walker Recall via Dirty Tricks!

Video: Obama On The Art Of Compromise In Politics

But does he understand that there is no compromising when the other guy going the wrong way down a one-way street refuses to yield?

From the Business Insider - IT'S OFFICIAL: The Whole World Thinks Republicans Are Dangerous Maniacs Threatening Everyone

Rube Murdoch Explains Why He Is Ultimately Responsible For The People He Trusted

Think Progress - Excerpt:
“I do not accept ultimate responsibility. I hold responsible the people that I trusted to run it and the people they trusted,” Murdoch said.

The American Way
1. Tariffs to protect U.S. Industries
2. A National Bank To regulate Commerce
3. Government spending on U.S. Infrastructure

Watch video to find out who dismantled the American Way and sent our economy into a death spiral.

No comment necessary.

Saw an anti-liberalism book ad very similar to this somewhere in the internets and I thought; why not have the top anti-liberal world-renowned conservative plug the book? It only makes sense.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Elkhorn - Rally For Workers and the Middle-Class

When: Fri, July 22, 4:30pm - 6:30pm

Where: 9 South Broad Street, Elkhorn, WI 53121 (Courthouse Square)

Description: WE ARE WISCONSIN rally in support of workers and the middle class in downtown Elkhorn.

FAMILY EVENT. Bring signs, horns, banners, costumes and busloads/boatloads of people. Keep the momentum going!

Defend Wisconsin.Org

Ad Depicts Walker's Class War Tax Shift Against Wage Earners

Although Sen. Luther Olsen is a guilty suspect, you can replace him in the video below with the name of any conservative or republican in the Wisconsin Assembly or Senate excluding Sen. Dale Schultz, the lone dissenting vote the night when his fellow-Republican colleagues successfully carried out a sneak attack on the middle class, and this video still works the charm.

(Gee, I hope I didn't damage Shultz's reputation among the nut-wing section of his party for defending his vote against Walker's bill.)

As the class war rages on, it's time for the working poor and middle classes to fight back. What's more, our state shows we have a shot at winning.

AlterNet Excerpt:
Watching ads with this simple message—elected officials taking money from the middle class and giving it to rich people and big corporations — makes it easy to understand why Republicans get huffy whenever they think Democrats are engaging in class warfare. When you fight the class war from the other direction, it can be very effective.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Video: Walker An Embarrassment In Beloit

Fitz-Flopping For Votes

In a calculated reversal, Republicans in the Wisconsin State Senate voted to capture an estimated $88 million in federal money to extend jobless benefits to tens of thousands of out-of-work state residents and joined Democrats in voting to drop a one-week waiting period to get jobless benefits that they adopted in Scott Walker's class war budget repair bill.

Facing the certain loss of their legislative seats, Alberta Darling, Luther Olsen, Sheila Harsdorf and Joe Leibham all Fitz-flopped away from their earlier position to punish needy Wisconsin families by delaying unemployment benefits for one week.

JS online Excerpt:
The flip-flop came as recall elections loomed for six Republican and three Democratic senators, including one election held Tuesday.

Sen. Hansen (D) Keeps Seat.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

InsurCorps Pouring Money Into Ryan's Campaign

According to this article, Rob Zerban, Democratic primary candidate for the 1st Congressional District of Wisconsin, has raised more money this quarter than any of Ryan's previous challengers since Ryan was elected. Zerban stated that the average contribution to his campaign is $42.

You can donate to Zerban's campaign to defeat Paul Ryan here.

Paul Ryan's campaign war chest on the other hand, more now than ever before, is gorging itself like a vampire squid wrapped around the face of Wall Street. Around this same period (July 2009) for his 2010 campaign, Ryan reported $1.28 million with 82 percent of his donors giving $100 or less. This year, Ryan reports $3.8 million cash on hand to date with 77 percent giving $100 or less.

Ryan’s campaign said 77 percent of the individual contributions since the beginning of 2011 year were $100 or less.

During each of the last three congressional elections, I've spent hours paging through Paul Ryan's campaign reports and this is what I've found. I found when you're dealing with statements from Ryan's campaign you have to think like you're dealing with the crooked'est used car dealer in the city. They don't mean 77 percent of the $3.8 million came from individuals giving $100 or less. No-no, not at all. What they really mean by 77 percent is about 4000 individuals (apprx.) contributed around $240,000 to his campaign while the rest, $3,560,000 of the $3.8 million reported, came from about 1,300 contributions (23%) funneled from 100 Big Corps entities.

Just like dealing with a slick-shady used car salesman, it's never ever what you thought you've heard at first from Paul Ryan. It's always that initial doubt that you curse yourself for by being duped, but only after you're left stranded in the road holding an empty bag.


Zerban Gives Ryan Run For His Money

Paul Ryan's Plan Popular - with Insurance Industry

Ryan Well Compensated By Special Interests (2009)

Crony Capital Pouring Into Ryan's campaign (2009)

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Late Notice! Governor Walker Visits Beloit

Time Monday, July 18 · 3:00pm - 6:00pm


Location Visitor Center in Beloit, WI on I-39/90


I'm sure by now we've all seen the fantastic video of Walker attempting to give a ceremonial type of speech at Gateway College. The crowd totally drowned him out!

Now Rock County Dems have a chance for a magical moment of their own! Governor Walker will be in Rock County (Beloit) on Monday (7-18-11, 3:30pm) for the ribbon cutting ceremony at the Visitor Center located on I-39/90. Let's make our voices heard!

Created By the Democratic Party of Rock County

Event Facebook

Saturday, July 16, 2011

PolitiFact Plays Politics Juggling The Facts

It's been quite awhile since I last posted anything about Politifact, the often inconsistent and eye-roll inducing editorial opinion tool masquerading as a truth/fact authority. But a story by the Democurmudgeon blogster about Sen. Sheila Harsdorf (R-River Falls) unwillingness to take a position on Rep. Paul Ryan's Medicare caught my eye. Here, Politifact gives a campaign ad by her challenger (Shelly Moore) a "pants-on-fire" rating for claiming that Harsdorf supports Rep. Paul Ryan's proposal to end Medicare.

PolitiFact Excerpt:
Democrats across the country are seeking political advantage by injecting Ryan and Medicare into local races.

But so what? What does what the Democrats are doing have anything to do with making a position known on a very important issue. Besides, how could it be a political advantage for Democrats when Politifact confidently writes, in the same article, that Ryan's proposal is something to be championed.

PolitiFact Excerpt:
The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) analyzed Ryan’s proposal and found that it will save the government money. It does so by asking future Medicare beneficiaries to pay more for insurance, PolitiFact National has reported.

The all-seeing-eye Politifact "reported" or deemed as fact? No matter, Politifact carries on even more defending Ryan's proposal in their editorial by parroting Ryans' made-up facts without challenge. So, who would deny supporting any part of that? Huh?

But let's look at the big picture here. We have a Republican state senator who is showing a huge gap in leadership ability by refusing to offer her position on a Republican proposal that deals with one of the biggest issues of our lifetime, an issue with huge state and local ramifications for every constituent in the country, refusing simply because she thinks Democrats will attempt to use the position against her. And Politifact uses that as evidence not to discover where Harsdorf stands, but to show that the reason for asking the question in the first place deserves closer inspection and harsh scrutiny.

Despite Harsdorf's steadfast refusal to make her position known on Ryan's proposal, her challenger claimed she supports Ryan's plan. Okay, that might not be totally accurate, but with Politifact's inability to prove Harsdorf for or against Ryan's proposal, Moore's campaign claim is at the minimum - at least half-true. It doesn't become "pants on fire" because somebody thinks the other side is playing politics. It can only become a "pants on fire" when they have proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that Harsdorf opposes Ryan's plan, OR as in this case, when an editorial opinion tool masquerading as a truth/fact authority plays politics.

Why Politifact would even consider ruling on this issue without discovering Hardorf's position is truly remarkable and a reflection of their illegitimacy.

Harsdorf owes her constituents a clear answer on that question before the election. Her cutting and running away reminds me of Ron Johnson when he said something like "you'll know where I really stand on the issues after I'm elected."

Another view: Conservative Leaning Politifact Continues to Muddy Controversial Republican Position on Medicare.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Madison's Center for Media and Democracy Pulls Underwear Off ALEC

Madison's Center for Media and Democracy starts Wiki on ALEC.

Dane 101 Excerpt:
Today, Madison’s very own Center for Media and Democracy launched ALEC Exposed, a project that serves as a major document drop of more than 800 “model” bills written by ALEC that previously hadn’t been available to the general public.

CMD writes: “We have analyzed and marked up the bills and resolutions to help readers understand what the bills do, beyond the PR in the names of bills. We share them to help the public identify the legislation in their state and the wide extent of the agenda to rewrite our rights by the corporations that bankroll ALEC.”

While CMD has begun the process of connecting the dots they’re asking for help from the public. This link explains how to utilize the ALEC Exposed wiki.

Read more here.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Rip Rap

Video: Walker Greeted At Racine Technical College

Fox6 Excerpt:
In Racine, teachers and union members greeted Governor Scott Walker with protest chants at a Gateway Technical College's Centennial event where he was speaking. More than half of the estimated 500 people at the event were wearing anti-Walker and pro-union clothing.

Title, "20% Drop in Housing to Cause Recession in 2012"

The problem with the real estate market remains excess inventory. Based on Shilling's research, there are 2 million to 2.5 million excess homes in the country -- a supply that will take 4-5 years to work-off. The result: Housing prices will fall another 20% and underwater mortgages will balloon from 23% to 40%, he says.

With housing slumping again, Shilling says recession is coming to a town near you in 2012.

We know that home construction has been at a near standstill since the crash of 2008. So where did this new load of excess homes come from after two years of record foreclosures? They were always there. There was no excess of homes when workers were collecting a middle-class home-buying paycheck. In this case, when they say "excessive home inventory" - they really mean an insufficient inventory of employed home buyers.

Title, "U.S. companies sitting on a record $1.9 trillion in cash, and shareholders want their share"

“We’ve been in bunker mentality for too long,” says Eric Jackson, who runs the hedge fund Ironfire Capital. He predicts that activist shareholders are about to become “a lot noisier.”

The loudest investors are finally being heard. Companies are letting go of some cash:
•Since the start of this year, 116 companies in the S&P 500 have raised their dividend, up from 78 a year ago. Overall, S&P 500 companies have paid out $16.6 billion more this year in dividends than last year.

Sure. After the capital/credit markets were bailed out with taxpayer dollars, why should they use their own cash to expand and create jobs when they have our government-doesn't-create-jobs deficit-spent tax treasuries to use as their jobs-for-ransom slush funds?

Republicans Would Crash U.S. Economy To Win Re-Election

From MoveOn: Republicans are threatening to plunge our economy into default and financial crisis. And all to protect tax breaks for the rich, while hurting American seniors and the middle class with huge cuts. Watch what Big Mike has to say about the Republican insanity. Video features image of the worst congressman at the beginning. Then share it with everyone you know:

Bill Maher: Republicans Killing Middle-class and We keep letting them get away with Murder

It's no secret that Bill Maher isn't a fan of fascist Republican policies. In the video below, he took aim at the party's economic thinking, and to illustrate what he saw as the absurdity of it, drew a parallel many might find more than a bit absurd themselves: he compared it to the Casey Anthony trial.

This one is right out of the Scott Walker, Scott Fitzgerald, Paul Ryan, Ron Johnson, Mitch McConnell, Grover Norquist playbook. Their plan in a nutshell: America must rewrite the Constitution to force conservative outcomes because we the people consistently elect lawmakers who disagree with them.

More from Think Progress.

Is Scott Walker a Closet Communist?

Care 2 Excerpt:
Thanks to Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) prison chain gangs are no longer a thing of the past. After successfully ramming through legislation that dismantles almost all collective bargaining rights for civil servants, Walker has now turned to prisoners to fill jobs that used to be held by unionized workers.

This really begs the question: Is this the beginning of state-run labor?

Finally, if you have the time (13 minutes), watch this interesting video about the movement Anonymous. It's about the group's (sprung from WikiLeaks) ideas to fight against corporate power.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

GOP Zombie Candidates Defeated

The good news is all six of the republican zombies running against legitimate Democrat candidates were defeated at the primary polls last night.

The state GOP, who disingenuously claimed they needed more time to campaign for their official Koch-sponsored Walker rubber stamp zombies, found all the time they needed to raise money, resources and robocalls on behalf of the half dozen sacrificial imbeciles who volunteered to help the conservative state-is-broke political party drain state taxpayers of another half million. The cost of the needless primary election Republicans fought to have is expected to cost $475,000.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Ryan's 'F_ _ _ Her' Associates Identified

It didn't take long for the internets to identify the two men Congressman Paul Ryan shared dinner and two expensive bottles of wine with, one of whom defended Ryan against an inquisitive citizen with an expletive.

TPM Excerpt:
When TPM asked Ryan who he was dining with Wednesday night, he declined to identify them, saying only that they were economists, not lobbyists. But TPM has confirmed that the two other men with Ryan were Cliff Asness and John Cochrane.

Asness, according to Feinberg was the one who said "F_ _ _ her," is a high-profile hedge fund manager who defended the $450 million in bonuses AIG executives received after being bailed out. Read full story here.

Did we expect anything different?

ADDITIONAL: The Paul Ryan Watch - Paul Ryan Not Just A Self Server

Monday, July 11, 2011

Janesville Medicare Forum Will Be Broadcast On JATV

JATV 98/994 will broadcast the June 29th Janesville Health Care Forum with Robert Kraig and Rob Zerban for the first time tomorrow, Tuesday - July 12 (it airs at 9:30 AM and 2:30 and 7:30 PM.) After this first airing, the program will repeat again in about a week – probably on a weekend when it will broadcast three times each on a Saturday and Sunday.

They've also added a fifteen minute segment of Robert Kraig's Medicare presentation on YouTube. You can view it here.

Pics on Facebook

Forget The Living Dead Movies - Only Ballots Will Defeat These Zombies

Saturday, July 09, 2011

What Kind Of Wine Does Paul Ryan Drink For $350?

Jayer-Gilles 2004 Echezeaux Grand Cru.

Here's an amazing story with photos from TPM about Rep. Paul Ryan dining at an upscale DC restaurant.

Here we learn that Ryan -- the architect of the Boone's-Farm-for-everyone, national-fiscal-austerity plan -- auto-pilots $350 bottles of Echezeaux Grand Cru (not one, but two bottles!) for his daily dinners and hangs with foul-mouth punk elitists looking for a brawl. Then he calls (demogogues?) the person who took note of his party's garish behavior "crazy." Yep, that's pure Ryan. But who are the other two? The Paul Ryan Watch asks?

TPM Excerpt:
She was outraged that Ryan was consuming hundreds of dollars in wine while Congress was in the midst of intense debates over whether to cut seniors' safety net, and she didn't know whether Ryan or his companions was going to pay for the wine and whether the two men were lobbyists. She snapped a few shots with her cell phone to record the wine purchase.

The clash became especially heated when Feinberg asked the men if they were lobbyists.

"F---- her," one of them replied and stood up in a menacing way, according to Feinberg's account.

Ryan does not dispute most of the details of Feinberg's account, although he told TPM the two men are economists, not lobbyists, and characterized Feinberg as "crazy" and possibly drunk. For her part, Feinberg said she believes the economist at the table who got out his seat to challenge her was the one intoxicated.

Remember when one of Ryan's serfs confronted Newt Gingrich? Nobody said he was crazy. Or the media brouhaha over John Edwards $400 hair cuts which helped lead to his indictment?

For a guy who preaches personal responsibility to everybody else when it comes to shopping around for health care, he thinks nothing of looking at the cost of a bottle of wine when he believes somebody else will cover the tab. Until he gets caught. What a phony.

Read full story here.

What Would Glenn Beck Say?

Additional: Blogging Blue - It's Good To Be King!

Friday, July 08, 2011

Scott Walker Named No. 1 Scariest Governor

From AlterNet - The 10 Scariest GOP Governors: Bringing a Radical Right-Wing Agenda To a State Near You.

AlterNet Excerpt:
Still, the bill passed, Walker's still in charge, and he's been taking aim at those who could defeat him. He got his way with a vicious voter ID bill and his budget cuts hit everything from the state university to the public schools to the state's health care program, one of the best in the country. He targeted rural broadband, people with disabilities and reproductive health care, and he's even messing with craft beer. (He really should know better on that one, but it seems there isn't a fight Walker's unwilling to pick.)

One of the biggest differences between the Right and Left is this. When the Right reads an article like this one sharply criticizing their kind - Republicans want to run them for president. When the Left reads an article like this one sharply criticizing one of their kind - Democrats want to impeach him in the Inquirer. What is THAT all about?

Read full story here.

Thursday, July 07, 2011

Walworth Republican Attempting To Choke Abrahamson Out Of Chief Justice

Prompted by either an apparent lack of respect for women or elders, FitzWalkerstan Repcon rubberstamp Tyler August has injected himself into the operations of the Wisconsin Supreme Court. He authored a constitutional amendment that would change how Wisconsin’s Supreme Court chief justice is determined.

Wheeler Report Excerpt:
The bill, currently known as LRB 2018/1, would modify the state’s constitution to require a peer election among the seven justices to select the chief justice, rather than being based on seniority.

“The leader of Wisconsin’s highest court should not simply be who has been there the longest,” said August. “The chief justice should be a consensus builder who has the respect of their fellow justices.”

Big Ante Gamers Pay-To-Play With Walker

The Wisconsin Democracy Campaign filed a complaint with the state Government Accountability Board, in which the group found 10 donors to Walker's campaign donated more than the $10,000 state limit for individual contributions to gubernatorial candidates.

JS Online Excerpt:
One of the Walker donors listed in the complaint is Ted Nickel, who was appointed by Walker to be the state insurance commissioner.

But Katie McCallum, a spokeswoman for the Republican Party of Wisconsin and Walker's campaign, said that one of the contributions listed as coming from Nickel should have been attributed to Nickel's wife and that the report will be corrected to reflect that.

I remember the days when right-wing loons would go into a spasmodic dance anytime Jim Doyle would receive a $63 Packer ticket or a campaign donation anywhere near the maximum, let alone to go over. God forbid.

With only six months into it, we're barely skipping rocks over the surface of Walker's cesspool of corruption and still getting slimed.

Wednesday, July 06, 2011

J.P. Cullen - True Colors

Today's True Colors Entry - Changing The Way We Do Business

JP Cullen & Sons

Contact: David Cullen. Previously served on the WMC board of directors.

Through their aptly named pre-referendum services, JP Cullen has actively campaigned for "yes" votes to increase local taxes in modest Wisconsin communities for projects they fully expected to bid on while simultaneously opening an inside track to structural needs assessments, governmental agencies and specialized project information. It is for these reasons paving the way for privileged insider knowledge why I believe JP Cullen holds a tremendous bidding advantage over competitors for local school district and public utility construction projects.

Yet despite proudly advocating for tax increases, JP Cullen was one of two board members of the Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance that paid no corporate state income taxes over a two-year period, according to this article by One Wisconsin.

Political contributions recorded by JP Cullen for Scott Walker totaled $3,950. JB Van Hollen scored $4,250. Evan Wynn picked up $550. Joe Knilans - $300.

Political Contributions: (2009 to date)

DEMOCRATIC $8,450 Source

Rating: FJ$ (7/6/11) LEGEND

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

Recalls With Zombies

Saw this list reposted at Cognitive Dissidence and thought it too good to pass up. With a few added hightlights and links.

Recall Names and Dates

2nd Senate District Republican Robert Cowles faces a recall: REAL DEMOCRAT:Nancy Nusbaum
FAKE DEMOCRAT: Otto Junkermann
Primary is July 12, General is August 9

8th Senate District Republican Alberta Darling faces a recall: REAL DEMOCRAT: Sandy Pasch
Primary is July 12, General is August 9

10th Senate District Republican Sheila Harsdorf faces a recall: REAL DEMOCRAT: Shelly Moore
Primary is July 12, General is August 9

14th Senate District Republican Luther Olsen faces a recall: REAL DEMOCRAT: Fred Clark
Primary is July 12, General is August 9

18th Senate District Republican Randy Hopper faces a recall: REAL DEMOCRAT: Jess King
FAKE DEMOCRAT: John Buckstaff
Primary is July 12, General is August 9

32nd Senate District Republican Dan Kapanke faces a recall: REAL DEMOCRAT: Jennifer Shilling
Primary is July 12, General is August 9

For the Democratic recalls:

12th Senate District Democrat Jim Holperin faces a recall: Primary for two Republican candidates is July 19, General is August 16

22nd Senate District Democrat Bob Wirch faces a recall: Primary for two Republican candidates is July 19, General is August 16

30th Senate District Democrat Dave Hansen faces a recall: General is July 19 (no primary is needed)

Sunday, July 03, 2011

Corporate Socialism Defined

Yet another story about private enterprise using government to either subsidize or guarantee their free market risks by shifting potential losses onto the backs of somebody else

Assembly Bill 182 puts the lord back in landlord.

Friday, July 01, 2011

Gazette Radio Working To Cover Up Partisan Image

First they dumped Tea Party bomb thrower Dan Conry. (Rumor through the vines said he resigned) Now they're cutting out the Laura Ingraham Show from their weekday night-time schedule. It won't matter. Because no matter how absent of political discourse or "soft" they'll try to project themselves, Bliss Com is the top messaging purveyor of the anti-education, middle-class busting, tax cut the rich, low-wage conservatism agenda in Rock County. You don't lose your religion by simply hiding the cross.

Video: Zerban Delivers "Hands Off Medicare" Signatures To Ryan