Today is

Friday, September 30, 2011

Another Walker Aide Resigns

Governor Scott Walker's Chief of Staff, Keith Gilkes, resigned from his $112,000 salary to return to his one-man political consulting firm. Gilkes said the John Doe Investigation has nothing to do with it.

Democurmudgeon: Walker Gets Ready For Recall!

DailyKos: Scott Walker's Chief Of Staff resigns...

Politico: Scott Walker's top aide resigns amid probe rumors.

Hope and Change Still Possible With Or Without Obama

Hartmann: If Obama Doesn't want To Lead The Revolution - Young People Will

The Wall Street Protest - American Revolution 3.0

Laurence O'Donnell: More Unprovoked Police Brutality At Wall St. Protests, Watch Video.

Michael Moore Occupies Wall Street: Video

Peaceful Protesters Penned In and Maced: Video

American Revolution 3.0 in Beta, Occupy Wall Street ORG - Videos, Photos, Stories and more.

New York's Mayor Bloomberg Warns Of Mass Riots If Economy Doesn't Create More Jobs. But how does he explain his police department's mob action?

Thursday, September 29, 2011

CNN Puts Lipstick On Ryan's Pig

In what I describe as one of the lamest interviews ever put on by a "professional" news organization, the CNN newsroom participated in what can be accurately described as little more than a image enhancement and calibration campaign masterfully scripted by Rep. Paul Ryan.

CNN Newsroom Sub-title
Rep. Paul Ryan has become popular by pushing the unpopular stance on entitlements. CNN's Gloria Borger profiles him.

No doubt about it, Ryan gave them a tube of lipstick and CNN knew exactly where to apply it.

During the interview, Ryan discombobulated as he described himself as a "messenger" and then claimed he gave up "fear" for Lent. Let me explain.

The traditional purpose of Lent is the preparation of the believer — through prayer, repentance and self-denial — for the annual Christian commemoration beginning on Ash Wednesday and culminating with Easter. During Lent, modern day practicing Roman Catholics oftentimes will make a personal sacrifice such as fasting or temporarily give up a treat or habit they might usually enjoy. But here's the trick. Ryan says, "I gave fear up for Lent this year." But how does one give up "fear" as a sacrifice? Even CNN's Bolger curiously asks, "how do you do that?" In Ryan's case however, much of what he can show for in the political arena has been built on demogoguery and fearmongering. Ryan thrives and relishes in it so much that had he said he was giving up "fearmongering," people who know his bully style would understand his loss and not question his personal Lenten sacrifice.

Ryan now appears to be in the midst of re-booting his Randian-corrupted Christian morality by dropping hints of his religiosity in recent interviews. The NY Times reported that Ryan is reading the “Read and Learn Bible” to his 6-year-old son and during this CNN interview, he subtly dropped another hint by announcing his sacrifice for Lent. Beyond Ryan's purposely religious remarks, he then frames himself as a fearless "messenger" courageously defending himself against undeserved attacks by Democrats and the Left.

CNN Excerpt:
"There's sort of a shoot-the-messenger strategy these days," he added. "I'm the messenger, and you can't fear that if you are who you are." It's a pattern for Ryan, who has grown in popularity by pushing the unpopular, a fairly unconventional route.

We know who Ryan is. No one in Congress has fear mongered, mocked and demagogued our safety nets or mischaracterized the American Way more than Congressman Ryan. No one. Before he embarked on his crusade to destroy Medicare, previous messages he delivered over the past five years were...

Ryan equated American labor unions to Saddam Hussein's brutal Ba'ath Party.

He joined Glenn Beck in calling progressives a cancer.

Ryan also admitted to voting for TARP not on the nuts and bolts of the proposal, but claimed by supporting it, he was saving capitalism from a hallucinatory fascist liberal statist agenda he channeled onto President Obama. Wow, demagoguery - thy name is Paul Ryan.

Interestingly, CNN left these few minor inconveniences out of their select profiling of the congressman.

Yet, through all of these unprovoked public declarations of war against Progressives, Labor and the President, it is Ryan who paints himself up not as a remorseful perpetrator of demagoguery, but as a victim of his target's push back and then sympathetically refers to himself as the "messenger."


Excerpt: (April, 2010)
Ryan (R-Regressive) -- "What I'm trying to do is indict the entire vision of progressivism, and its important to flush progressives out into the field of open debate."
Beck (R-Regressive) -- "I love you."


Paul Ryan - Scott Walker With a Smile

Paul Ryan Is Not Who You Think

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Ghouls On Parade

This would have been better suited for my Halloween posting, but Republicans couldn't wait.

There has been a deafening silence from the Republican candidates onstage and off during the party debates after their base of supporters sickeningly applauded the execution of 243 people, cheered letting the uninsured die as a matter of personal responsibility and freedom, then booed an American soldier serving his country because he is gay.

Some of us might still want to believe the ghoulish audience responses at the GOP presidential debates were just mischievous anomalies. Not in my book. This is the soulless "new norm" Ayn Rand mentality the American public will soon have to come to grips with including her growing congressional cabal of brazenly anti-American adherents.

So, where were the condemnations from the Republican base? What happened to the religious Right that was such a powerful force during George W. Bush's presidency? Whatever happened to the compassionate Conservatives?"

Time swampland Excerpt:
In the wake of the debt-ceiling debate, young voters might find it hard to believe that just ten years ago, “compassionate conservative” was a mantle worn with a straight face by many GOP leaders. In fact, you could argue that George W. Bush split the independent vote with Al Gore in 2000 because of his image as a compassionate conservative. Now, of course, in the era of the kick-ass-and-kill-programs Tea Party, few Republicans who value their careers would run as a touchy-feely politician. But is compassionate conservatism dead, or just mostly dead?

Marvin Olasky, widely credited as the author of compassionate conservatism and editor of the conservative evangelical magazine WORLD, is still around. And he’s displeased enough with the GOP’s current leadership to rebuke them for embracing the individualism of Ayn Rand.

I don't believe this abrupt "change of heart" has anything to with the national budget or the temperament some Conservatives deem necessary to implement austerity measures. Those soulless outbursts at the debates are the genuine hallmarks of a bold-faced people who are out to destroy almost every edifice in the contemporary American way of life, our Judeo-Christian religion, our modified government regulated capitalism and our rule by the majority will. There is no other way around it.

So when your stomach turns at the sound of somebody fiendishly cheering on death, suffering and misery, chances are high you've encountered either a mentally deranged person who needs to be forgiven, or a cold and calculating Ayn Randing Republican who deserves no pardon.

Obama tackles ghouls: Busted Perry, criticizing him as "a governor whose state is on fire, denying climate change." Obama also poked at the audience reactions at recent GOP presidential debates. Read more here>>>.

Video: Democratic Party Ad on the GOP's lack of leadership at the debates.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Video: Michael Moore Explains What Went Wrong

Unrehearsed, Moore turns it on during an interview with Piers Morgan.


This Is What Good Government Solutions Look Like

I don't know the specifics to the agreement, only what I read from this article. But it appears Mayor Paul Soglin of Madison approached the police and fire department unions with a budget crisis, laid out the numbers, enumerated the consequences, and the unions responded with sincerity and honor. The proposal looks like it was negotiated between mutually respectful parties and has the right framework for everyone together to move forward on.

Channel 3000 Excerpt:
MADISON, Wis. -- Madison Mayor Paul Soglin said on Monday that local unions have agreed to $2.3 million in contract modifications that will mean no layoffs or furloughs for police officers or firefighters for next year.[...]Union leaders said they didn't have to open up the contracts, but they did because the city needed help.

For some reason, most people tend to respond favorably to changes and adjustments when they aren't softened up first with a baseball bat. Unfortunately, it's way too late for Walker and state Republicans to get a lesson in good government from Madison. Not to assume that they would care or want the lesson anyways.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Occupy Together Protests Spreading

The "Occupy Wall Street" protests are spreading across the United States. Protestors are now taking up a position outside of the Federal Reserve Bank in Chicago and they are looking for some support. For all progressives in the Chicagoland area, Occupy Chicago has begun! More here>>>.

Occupy Madison Gearing Up - Hey Madison, it's time to take over the Square again, we might not be able to Occupy Wall street. But we can show our support! A world of change.

1,000 + people marched through NYC and many were arrested. The crowd at the park grows each day. If you have not heard from your friends lately ... maybe they're there.

Update: NYPD Violence Footage

Cameras are everywhere, maybe the revolution WILL be televised.

I'm hoping this is only the beginning of a struggle to liberate ourselves from having the fruits of our laborous production be confiscated and redistributed to the looters and moochers on Wall Street. How and why a hedge fund manager can earn a million dollar bonus while a guy tirelessly laboring in a sweaty American foundry covered in soot and iron dust has to fight to keep his $12 an hour job from being outsourced. Who legalized this theft and who benefits?

Friday, September 23, 2011

GOP Picks Third Most Unpopular Republican For Fund Raising

USA Today Excerpt:
House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan, considered a rising Republican star, has been tapped to lead a high-profile party fundraising group tasked with raising money for the GOP's 2012 ground game.

Hot Air Excerpt: (June, 2011)
The poll also found Ryan is now the nation’s third most disliked Republican, with net unfavorable ratings that trail only former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin.

Obviously the GOP has no chance or use to campaign for piddly $20 donations from working class wage earners, so it's only logical to choose a connected Wall Street crony capitalist.

But these appear to be more signs that the Republican Party is preparing for a major war to defend the wayward class war congressman's House seat in 2012. They know we know Ryan has absolutely nothing to show for in 14 years, so they redrew his district boundaries by throwing in chunks of GOP-infested Walkersha County and now the party gives him a confidence boosting empty title to what amounts to a publicity stunt befitting an empty suit.

They are pulling out all the stops.

State Republicans Lashing Out Like Cornered Rats

Rocked by recalls, facts, investigations and scandal, the Walker regime and his increasingly paranoid allies are behaving like wounded rats backed into a corner. They can't move around in comfort with everyone watching so don't be surprised by anything they try to squelch public opinion and shift our attention away from its current focus. Stay strong, keep the focus and be prepared.

Under those rather foreboding circumstances, I found this posting at the DailyKos an interesting muse. The writer introduces the running gag about dogs being distracted from their primary duties by the sightings of squirrels from the animated film, Up.

For instance, the writer suggests one such squirrel thrown out by Walker's tools to be chased by the dogs of media and fed to the public was the absurd attempt by republicans to make the entire Wisconsin protest movement responsible for the minor altercation at a hotel bar between two individuals. The individual that had some of the world's finest lager poured on him happened to be state legislative barfly Robin Vos. Oh, the horrors! Chase that squirrel!

Here's another...

DailyKos Excerpt:
With impeccable timing, Republican State Representative Steve Nass today called for an investigation SQUIRREL! into the performance of Capitol Police Chief Charles Tubbs.

Look there, there's one now! No, look there, there's another one! No, go that way! But whatever you do - don't look at the rat in the corner. Don't look at the unfolding Walkergate scandal, the heightened fervor for Walker's recall or the reasons why J.B. Van Hollen is unfit to serve as a prosecutor for the people of the State of Wisconsin. They are operating a full tilt disinformation campaign in the dark shadows, and turned down all the lights in hopes that we can't tell the difference between the squirrel and a rat. The problem for us is, as long as the media continues to bark up the wrong tree, it seems to be working.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Video: Scott Walker We Should Recall

A musical call to action.

Scott Walker, You Should Recall from Cassie Wagler on Vimeo.

Granholm: Michigan Bears The Scars Of Small Government And Tax Cuts

Former Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm has a plan to restore America.

"We operate as though we are not in a global economy," says Granholm. "In theory, free markets and laissez faire make perfect sense, but in practice, our competitors are eating us for lunch."

One of Granholm's critical points is that states simply don't have the resources to compete against other countries. What they end up doing is simply stealing jobs from each other -- a zero-sum game for the nation as a whole in which everyone races to the bottom trying to create favorable investment climates.

Here is her coup de maitre...

"I listed the bill numbers of all the tax cuts I signed as governor in the book for a reason. Ninety-nine of them! Big ones, small ones, targeted -- whatever! If you think that small government and tax cuts are the way you are going to grow the economy, Michigan's unemployment rate should be the lowest in the country, because I cut more than any state in the nation by far! We also cut more government employees than any state in the country. Our corporate tax burden dropped the greatest of any state in the country."

"Rick Perry, interestingly enough, took all of his stimulus money and invested it and grew the public sector in Texas. Texas' public sector actually grew the most during the past decade and Michigan's got cut the most during the past decade. And Texas has the best job creation and Michigan had the worst. What does that tell you?"

It is refreshing to read about the real life consequences resulting from the rhetoric and theories thrown around by many of our naive and ideologically misguided politicians. What works and what doesn't. Granholm gets it and delivers the goods in this article. A recommended read with sharp observations and irrefutable talking points.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

NY Police Rampage Against Peaceful Protesters - Sign Of The Times?

The NY Times had absolutely nothing posted about this story as of 1 AM today. It does appear like the police were the active aggressors.

According to the videographer, this was taken Sept. 20, 2011 at 10:08 a.m. (Eastern) in Zuccotti Park - New York, NY

Police Provoking Outrage

Pass it on.

Not So Breitbart: From Mudslinger To Gunslinger

When I first saw this posted at the Democurmudgeon and again at Blogging Blue I thought, aah well, Andy the Clown making a fool of himself... nothing new here. Time to move on. But wait a second! Hold on. Let's play this back one more time.

These are his people and they laughed in his clown face when he said "we have the guns." They laughed at him - not with him. Incredulous by their response, he meant it, "I'm not kidding" he said afterwards with a straight face. Admitting to losing the "rhetoric" (read reasoning) wars, Breitbart comes off sounding like the threatening Liberty Valance from the classic western with John Wayne and Jimmy Stewart. You know the black-hatted gunslinger who can't win the argument or the girl without trying to take them by force. Breitbart even implies the military is on his side. What the...?

Andy the Clown has everything going for him in this speech, the set up, the deadpan, the punchline and even the giggles and the laughs. The only thing missing was the clown nose and hair.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Video: 1st Congressional District Do-It-Yourself Townhall

After previously being subjected to police action under orders from Rep. Paul Ryan, constituents from Kenosha and Racine gathered together without the congressman in attendance for a townhall meeting in safety and with the knowledge that they would not be subjected to arrest for voicing their concerns.

Monday, September 19, 2011

GOP Base Fulfilling Rand's Anti-American Doctrine

In this short video, Ayndroidian House Speaker John Boehner announces that the job creators, otherwise known as Rand's ubersmenschenian "producers," are officially on strike.

Crooks and Liars Excerpt:
I think it's safe to say that John Boehner just admitted that corporate interests, in collusion with the Republican party, are intentionally sabotaging the United States economy in order to gain even more political power and strip everyone else of theirs.

What I absolutely believe Republicans are, the Paul Ryan's, the Ron Johnson's, Rand Paul's, Ron Paul's, John Boehners, the Jim Jordan's and John Campbell's just to name a few in Congress, are enemies of American society and everything our Constitution is founded on. As more evidence of their contemptible message continues to trickle in daily, Americans will begin to get a more mainstream glimpse of the GOP's and Tea Party's true intentions. It is exactly as Mike Wallace so eloquently put in a question to Ayn Rand back in 1959.

Personally, I think this is the biggest story and battle of our times.

Additional Reading:

Ayn Rand & GOP Budget vs. Judeo-Christian Morality

Friday, September 16, 2011

Is Politico-Opted By Right-Wing Engineering?

I found these articles by Politico about the recent special New York election very telling of their conservative bias.

Politico was quick to mention that the Democrat in the race distanced himself from Obama. That's fair enough...

Politico Excerpt:
Even though Weprin distanced himself from Obama, Turner rallied Orthodox-Jewish support by linking the assemblyman to the White House.

..but made no mention that the Republican, Bob Turner, distanced himself from Paul Ryan's kill Medicare proposal. Not a huge gaffe unless they would try to build on that omission, which unfortunately is exactly what they proceeded to do.

As noted by the The Paul Ryan Watch and explained at the Frum Forum, the New York Republican openly rejected Ryan's privatize Medicare proposal - and won.

Frum Forum Excerpt:
Bob Turner distanced himself from the Ryan budget on Medicare and from Rick Perry (or at least the Perry of Fed Up!) on Social Security.

Despite that, Politico threw all common sense to the wind and giddily jumped off the bridge of journalistic integrity by writing that Paul Ryan was one of the winners in the NY special election.

That was blatant shrill political noise in an attempt to neutralize the heavy rejection Ryan's proposal was handed during Republican Jane Corwin's loss in the earlier special election held in upstate New York. Unlike Turner, Corwin openly supported the party-line Mediscare proposal at first, only to later dump Ryan's plan entirely when canvassing polls began turning against her.

As noted by xoff, if anything the NY-9 special election proved that republicans still have a chance at winning congressional elections providing they can convincingly distance themselves away from Ryan's extreme budget proposal. I'd hardly describe that as a "win" for Paul Ryan.

What was Politico thinking?

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Repeal Act 10 To Restore Shared Revenues

Contrary to all the media hype and Walker's empty rhetoric about "tools," Wisconsin communities will be paying more in and getting less in return.

Beyond the destruction of collective bargaining rights, we knew this was their endgame. That the Walker class war budget taking $810 million away in state aid from education would force locals to do two things, either raise taxes on themselves or start making drastic cuts, or both.

JG Excerpt:
Janesville School Board members got some new budget numbers Tuesday, and they weren’t good ones.

The numbers suggested the board could raise property taxes this fall by up to 10 percent, although it doesn’t seem likely they will do so.

New estimates show that the district will get even less state aid than previously estimated but could raise taxes to make up the difference.

Wisconsin communities that have lost major employers, towns like Janesville, have been hit doubly hard because remaining taxpayers lucky enough to be employed will be footing an even larger tax bill to balance school and municipal budgets. After cutting education revenue to communities, Walker and Republicans increased government spending by $1.1 billion while promising to deliver less in local shared revenues. They have pulled off what is probably the greatest tax shift hoax in state history.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Janesville School Board Attempted To Re-Open Teachers Contract Yet Again

Taking their cue in part from state legislative leaders and the nothing-to-negotiate-nothing-to-compromise Scott Walker, Janesville school teachers said they are not interested in re-opening their contract after the school board made yet another attempt to extract economic concessions from teachers to help fund education.

Over the past several months, Janesville school teachers have endured heightened public scrutiny arising from repeated misinformation campaigns spread by certain union-unfriendly school board members and their media enabler, the Janesville Gazette. During each attempt, the newspaper published multiple negatively slanted articles, blog postings and editorials while delivering a steady diet of anonymous rantings against the teachers in their "Sound Off" columns. Surfing through their internet content alone doesn't quite show the full extent the Gazette has gone to in their campaign against organized labor and public school teachers. You'd really have to include their daily hardcopy to get the full breath and scope of their agenda. All in all, it's been business as usual.

But this relentless local school board/media campaign to break the teachers unity gives me an idea I'd like to see implemented by an Assembly/Senate Democrat or two in the state legislature. I don't know the exact procedural steps involved, but I'd like to see a legislator write up a durable resolution to repeal Act 10 and present it to legislative committees. Ask for supporting sponsors each time and record and document the positions taken by fellow legislators on the resolution. After each submission, write up a press release every week listing who, why and how the resolution was refused. Accuse opposing legislators for being uncompromising and belligerent and constantly foment public opinion against them through the comment sections of major Wisconsin newspapers. Do this every week. Of course this won't work as well without compliant media outlets, but at least we'll be applying the same tactics they seem to be using here in Janesville.

Plus, what's the harm?

Monday, September 12, 2011

Video: Labor Day Parade Greets Paul Ryan

It's almost like, "this is a parade for labor? I thought it was a parade for me."

Boots and Sabers Excerpt:
When politicians are behaving badly, they should feel like they are in hostile territory.

According to Deekaman, it was similar elsewhere.

In other news, Deekawife 3.0 went to Senator Feingold’s (I’m not) Listening Session at MATC today. The crowd was overwhelmingly against his stands…

He didn’t care.

Oh, I'm sorry. That was about Feingold. He's a Democrat.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Post 9/11: Faces Of Debt

President George W. Bush along with the GOP majorities misguided in part by the dime-store economics of Congressman Paul Ryan literally drove our economy into the ground. Immediately following 9/11, Americans pulled together and were willing to make any sacrifice to punish the perpetrators behind the murderous attack. Who in their right mind would have said "no" to a tax increase at that time to pay for the effort? No one. Instead, Bush told Americans to go out and spend, go shopping and get down to Disney World. Buy a new house, get a new car.

Bush then proceeded to begin a very expensive military offensive and hinted it would be global in scope and likely to last decades, but made absolutely no plans to pay for it. He cut taxes and Ryan agreed. Believe it or not, Ryan actually wanted a larger tax cut "stimulus" than Bush initially proposed. A tax cut that he claimed would lessen surpluses projected by the CBO at that time.

Later on, the GOP majority pushed through Medicare Part D and by cutting taxes again in 2003, they said, "don't worry, we don’t have to pay for any of it because we're fiscal conservatives." In the meantime, Bush kept asking for "one-time" emergency appropriations for the wars over and over again. Ryan and the GOP majority gave it to him without ever increasing taxes to pay for it, over and over again.

In 2010, Ryan refused to support unemployment compensation as a stand alone bill and said the assistance was becoming a hammock for the unemployed. He said simply that America could not afford the $38 billion cost, but immediately reversed that position once the extension of the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy was thrown into the mix, eventually adding another $858 billion in future debt! Apparently, we STILL don't have to pay for anything.

The bottom line is; Bush and Ryan spent a ton of money without giving a second thought to how and when we'd pay for it. Instead of asking for sacrifices, they offered tax cuts.

Democrats made two attempts to extend the Bush-era rates for middle income families while letting the top rates sunset. Republicans said no. Slice it and dice it any way you like but the Bush-era deficits, including debt he deferred well into the future, were created without ever thinking about how we'll pay for any of it – and that skewed fiscal mindset continues into today.

So, will Ryan or his fellow Republicans now finally raise taxes to help post at least a minimum down payment? Not a chance! They signed a pledge promising to never vote for a tax revenue increase for any reason. With that pledge, Ryan and Republicans have abdicated their fiscal duty to country and are deliberately kicking the can down the road even further than ever before.

Not only that, but all of the current GOP presidential candidates want to lower tax rates from they are today and send our country careening towards immeasurable deficits. As can be expected, the wrong-headed Ryan also is predictably pushing for larger tax cuts yet again, this time claiming they will help lessen CBO-projected deficits! Sound familiar? They want to kick the "not paying for anything" method of budgeting insanity into overdrive. THAT’S the real entitlement mentality.

Ryan and most Republicans now blame the Big 3 safety nets as the cause and root to our nation's debt.

Of course! What else could they possibly say caused the mess we are in today? Certainly none of the above.

Friday, September 09, 2011

Are Some Wisconsin Counties Software Electioneered?

Is Wisconsin's election system really secure? Segway Jeremy Ryan seems to have uncovered a serious glitch in the system and raises some good questions.

Addicting Info Excerpt:
I watched the entire session and there it was: Kevin Kennedy says that the GAB does not have software developers and uses the DOA for that with elections code. But wait a second the famous election software that Kathy Nickolaus, the Waukesha County Clerk who had an incident of either gross negligence or election fraud that flipped the Supreme Court Race for David Prosser (the Republican), was written by the GAB as previously reported by the GAB, right? Guess the GAB was less than honest as Kevin clearly said, they have no developers on board so contract with the GAB.

In the statement left at the office, they asked for information on which counties had election software written by the DOA and who the people were writing the software. By watching the entire video you draw two conclusions. One, some counties use software from the vendor, others the DOA. And two, the software written for Kathy Nickolaus which was formerly thought to be written by GAB, was actually written by DOA.

“Mike Huebsch is the Secretary of the DOA. He is also former GOP leader and ALEC leader. It doesn’t take a PhD to see the conflict of interest in allowing any department run by such a highly partisan official anywhere near our election systems or software,” said Ryan, who is also Executive Director of Defending Wisconsin PAC.

State Republicans, famous for stealing local control under the guise of statewide uniformity, can't seem to get the state's election computers on the same page? Citizens of the State of Wisconsin deserve direct and honest answers to this inquiry.

More here.

Thursday, September 08, 2011

The Rotary Club and Paul Ryan: Low-Brow and Self-Serving

Paul Ryan was on the hotseat at the Whitnall Park Rotary Luncheon where the general public was invited to pay $15 to hear him speak. After opening his speech with "I'm a Federal guy and ...we have a debt crisis," which was his way of saying "keep district issues out of this," at least a dozen brave citizen heroes angry over local joblessness immediately called the congressman out on his tax cuts/debt crisis voodoo economics and demanded to hear about his job proposals. Well, he has none. But the anger was right at the surface for many and in some cases boiled right over.

Unfazed by their hardship, Ryan continued, "Most of our debt in the future comes from our entitlement programs," when suddenly a brave new world senior couldn't resist any more bullshit from the detached and emotionally cold congressman and spoke out, "Hey! What is this you're trying to pull?"

Watch it:

After the senior is tackled and taken to the floor, the immature congressman then mocks the man's predicament "I hope he's taking his blood pressure medication," which gets a hearty "ho, ho" laugh from the disappointingly low-brow Rotarian crowd. The fact that Rotary club members seem to think it’s funny to crack jokes about 71 year-olds being tackled to the ground for daring to speak their mind to the congressman is simply disgusting. We already knew Paul Ryan has no shame, but the Rotary Club? This definitely raises some questions about this once proud and benevolent institution.

Rotary Foundation Mission statement:
The mission of The Rotary Foundation is to enable Rotarians to advance world understanding, goodwill, and peace through the improvement of health, the support of education, and the alleviation of poverty.

The Foundation is a not-for-profit corporation supported solely by voluntary contributions from Rotarians and friends of the Foundation who share its vision of a better world.

Rotary officials should have made some effort to stand with their invited guests and make some adjustments allowing each a minute or two to speak to the congressman. That would have gone a long way to lowering the temperature. Plus, it's not like any of this came as a surprise. They knew well in advance this luncheon with the embattled congressman could be rough around the edges. Instead they threw their mission statement in the trash can and became intolerant and combative.

Ryan pretty much jokes and shrugs his way through the rest of the luncheon. Apparently, he thinks he can propose legislation straight out of anti-American Ayn Rand's dark fictional world of labor exploitation, wealth worship and selfishness, and decent compassionate Americans are expected to take it all laying down with smiles on their faces. Rotary Club members too have seemingly abandoned their mission statement for the sake of a few dollars. Shame on them.

Very sad indeed.

Lots more below:

Politicusa - Constituents arrested for asking questions at Paul Ryan Luncheon

Uppity Wisconsin - 71 Year Old handcuffed and arrested at Paul Ryan meeting

Blogging Blue - Paul Ryan Trilogy

DailyKos - Paul Ryan Takes A Cheap Shot At An Elderly Man

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Video: Janesville Constituents Speak Out To Paul Ryan

Club TNT Presents: Where Are The Jobs Rally - Ask Congressman Paul Ryan

Video submitted by Breitlinks.

Attending Rock County AirFest Supports Koch/Walker Machine

The latest on Koch's class war apparatus:

MotherJones Excerpt:
Diane Hendricks: Hendricks is the billionaire former head of the ABC Supply roofing company, which she took over from her husband Kenneth after he died in a construction site accident in 2007. Reportedly worth $2.2 billion, she is the richest businesswoman in Wisconsin and a big Republican Party donor. She recently gave her state's embattled Republican governor, Scott Walker, $10,000 in advance of a potential recall vote next year.

In one audio recording, the audience laughs it up when Koch tongue-twists a million (dollars) during a speech he gives to recognize "partners" who have made seven-figure donations to the Koch plutocracy machine. Among the 32 big dollar "partners" mentioned are Wisconsinites Diane Hendricks from ABC Supply and John Menard.

This is exactly what the working class is up against and why it is so difficult to defeat these wealthy fascists. 50,000 wage earning voters can struggle to give $20 each to a solid grassroots "people" cause or candidate and lose the messaging campaign to one radical, authoritarian nationalist zealot with a couple million dollars.

"It isn't just your money we need. We need your energy. We need you bringing in new partners, new people. We can't do it alone. This group can't do it alone. We have to multiply ourselves. Just as to change the media we just can't have the judge. We need to clone him thousands and thousands-fold." -- Charles Koch


MotherJones - Koch Brothers Million Dollar Club

Bradblog - Inside the Koch Brothers' 2011 Summer Seminar (with audio and transcripts)

JS Online - Menard, Hendricks on Koch donor list

Labor Pains In Hometown Grow Louder Against Paul Ryan

JG Excerpt:
JANESVILLE — At Monday's Labor Day parade through downtown Janesville, people cheered and applauded for Janesville native and 1st District Republican Congressman Paul Ryan.

In the same article from the Janesville Gazette they wrote, "When a small group of labor supporters went by holding "Recall Scott Walker" signs, however, the cheers turned to whoops, and the applause got louder." Let's put it this way, despite Janesville being Congressman Paul Ryan's hometown, the overall tone from the labor crowd toward him was only slightly less "enthusiastic" to that shown towards Scott Walker.

Due to an embarrassing technical difficulty at the worst possible time, I do not have photos or video proof. But I walked about half the route in step behind Paul Ryan and heard plenty of boos and jeers for him and saw individual spectators holding anti-Ryan signs along the Main Street parade route. I also noticed significant areas of spectators that did not acknowledge him at all, almost as if they were respectfully giving him the cold-shoulder when he passed by. Remember this is Ryan's hometown and many of these folks know each other. So did “people cheer and applaud him?” Sure, he had pockets of diehard supporters along the route, but to imply he was widely cheered is blatantly false. The Gazette at least acknowledged that their report was covering only a city block of the parade. The parade stretched for a mile.

Speaking of Ryan, he was pushing a baby stroller during the event, which I think shows extremely poor judgment on his part if he believes in his own fearmongering rhetoric. Remember, Ryan referred to the labor protests in Madison earlier in the year as riots similar to those going on in Cairo, Egypt at the time, and a few years ago smeared union members as violent thugs similar to Saddam Hussein's Ba'ath Party. So why would he subject his young children to that potential for harm if that's what he really thinks of labor? Or is he just a 24/7 lying hyper-ventilator who can't pass up an opportunity to demagogue those who disagree with him at every chance he gets?

Related reading: Democurmudgeon - Ryan calls protesting citizens, "the new norm." Ah, I think they're trying to tell you something Paul?

Monday, September 05, 2011

Tough Labor Day For Republicans

Republicans in Wisconsin head into this Labor Day holiday licking their wounds after ramming through legislation against the working poor and middle-class wage earners and losing two state senate seats to Democrats during the recalls. Unable to sustain any genuine pushback, Republican support groups fruitlessly spent millions when they recalled three of the fourteen courageous Democrats who stood up against Walker's class war agenda and miserably failed to recapture even one seat. The people have spoken.

It’s a far cry from last Labor Day when Jim Doyle was still governor and Republicans were welcome to participate in all Laborfest celebrations across the state. But since rubberstamping Walker's surprise attack on collective bargaining rights, Republican legislators have finally shown their true colors and contempt for public sector employees, labor and their organized counterparts. Why republicans would want to take part in celebrations with the very people they openly scorned and disempowered is a question for psychologists to sort out.

In the meantime, Wisconsin State Employees Union director Marty Beil says union members are more invigorated and unified than ever.

Support the grassroots Recall effort of Scott Walker and Rebecca Kleefisch with an online donation.

United Wisconsin Donate Here

Sunday, September 04, 2011

Are You Really a Progressive? Take the Test

Saw this first at Blogging Blue.

Here's an interesting little 40 question quiz to see how your own ideological leanings stack up against those of your fellow Americans. If I had to guess, I would identify more with being Progressive lite. But I scored 320/400 which according to the Center of American Progress makes me extremely progressive.

Click here to take the test.

Saturday, September 03, 2011

Rip Rap

House Republicans want any new funds spent for disaster aid to be offset by cuts elsewhere

Sure. Why not start by ending all tax credits and subsidies to Big Oil? Then move on to all subsidies and tax credits for Big Corpse. Why not start taxing hedge funds and other exotic investment schemes on Wall Street? But nooooo. As George Carlin once said, "they're coming after our Social Security ...and they'll get it."

Uh-oh. Major Quake Rocks Alaska. Hurricane Lee spinning into the Gulf.

Will Eric Cantor or Paul Ryan demand Americans give up their Medicare and Social Security to offset disaster relief? Why not just come out and say it fellas, we know that's what you want.

The GOP's Murder Gun Raffle

Think Progress Excerpt:
In Same District Where Rep. Gabrielle Giffords Was Shot, GOP Auctioning Off A Glock .45 At Fundraiser

The GOP Must Be Saving the Raffle for the Ruger Mini-14, the weapon conservative hero Anders Breivik used to murder 69 children on an island retreat in Norway, for their big push fundraiser for 2012.

Are Republicans Taunting American Workers by participating In the Labor Day Celebration?

It's very possible. Remember when Tea Party activists spat on Rep. Emanuel Cleaver (D-Mo.) and hurled epithets at Reps. John Lewis (D-Ga.) and Andre Carson (D-Ind.) while walking to the Capitol to debate the health care reform bill? Some conservative pundits implied that the congressmen taunted the protesters by their mere presence because they could have avoided the situation by taking a different route. Not so with Wisconsin Republicans. After ramming through legislation designed to strip collective bargaining rights away and defund labor organizations, local Republicans seem proud to march with the victims of their legislative assaults. Are they hoping for something bad to happen? It's very possible.


Swimming In Cash, Executives Say Spending Now Is Risky

Corporate Cash Holdings Have Grown 59 Percent Since 2008

Republicans want to lower Corporate taxes low enough so executives can risk somebody else's money.

Bachmann Doubles Down On Drilling In Everglades, Says Only ‘Radical Environmentalists’ Would Oppose

Can Bachmann go far enough off the cliff to make Perry look sane?

Many Are Carrying Water For Paul Ryan and His Randian Proposal

Crooks and liars Excerpt: (story & video)
Apparently toeing the line for Paul Ryan's budget proposal which contains massive cuts to transportation and infrastructure spending. Ryan's name was never used and his proposal was never mentioned here, but that doesn't matter much, because what they were doing is advocating for everything that's in it.

This is something we really have to start watching for. Some House Representatives, Senators and talking heads are parroting various provisions from Ryan's Kill Medicare Budget proposal without ever mentioning his name or referring to the proposal. It's sort of a way to test public reaction to it when a different salesman presents it. But in order to catch them in the act, you have to be fairly knowledgable about his dastardly proposal. For instance in Wisconsin, Sean Duffy and Ron Johnson parrot excerpts from Ryan's proposal almost exclusively while never mentioning Ryan or his proposal. Eric Cantor and Marco Rubio too. The list of folks on the right doing this is fairly large. Also, watch sneaky Democrats like Kent Conrad. They need to be called on it when they do it. You know, "Hey, isn't that in Paul Ryan's class war budget proposal? Why do you want to kill Medicare and give larger tax cuts to corporations and the super-wealthy?"

Tribune Company: 640 executives to share $42 million.

Your Honor, we are here today during the course of our bankruptcy proceedings, that despite declining performance, to ask for authority to pay management executives bonuses.

Video: Ed Shultz Calls Out Coward Rubio For Ryanesque Speech

There's uncertainty out there says small business, but taxes and regulations have nothing to do with it.

Out of touch Republicans still blame taxes and regulations.

Friday, September 02, 2011

Janesville Pops With Main Street Rally For Jobs

The turn-out was substantial despite unusually hot and sticky weather for the first of September in Janesville. The Thursday late afternoon speak-out in front of Rep. Paul Ryan's office and the following soup kitchen had it all with about 150 people being treated to a line up of passionate speakers, some street theatre and a tasty meal of beef, mashed potatoes and sweet corn, washed down with your choice of iced tea or lemonade - free of charge. The ladies serving up the meals did a fantastic job!

The street theatre of a "fake" Paul Ryan dressed in a white tux answering some tough questions about his record and positions added a nice twist of entertainment to the rally flavor of the event. There was no way the real Paul Ryan would subject himself to such close contact mingling with the box wine class. These folks (Registered Nurses, Union Reps.) were gathered to make a convincing point, and that they did.

It was good enough to be worth a price of admission. Well done!

Additional photos at National Nurses United Soup Kitchen

Thursday, September 01, 2011

Reminder - Janesville Soup Kitchen and Speak Out!

Thursday, September 1 · 5:00pm - 7:00pm

US Congressman Paul Ryan's Janesville Office
20 S. Main Street and
Courthouse Amphitheater Park at S. Main and E. Court Streets
Janesville, WI

Created By
Jan Rodolfo RN

Please Join Nurses for a Soup Kitchen and Speak-Out!

Buses Leaving from Madison:
3:30pm: Memorial Union; 4pm: GEF Bldg (King + Webster St)

We'll bring a much needed dose of reality to US Congressman Paul Ryan, while feeding the people that Wall Street and its political lackeys have devastated and turned their backs on.

Tell Congressman Ryan “Where It Hurts” in Janesville!

While Wall Street banks got bailed out of the financial crisis that THEY caused, Main Street towns like Janesville are suffering!

Deep cuts in social services, further corporate tax-breaks and schemes to privatize Medicare and Social Security will only result in the further devastation of Main Street.

Urge US Congressman Paul Ryan to support a Tax on Wall St. to bring quality jobs, housing, healthcare and education back to Main Street!

Buses Leaving from Madison:
3:30pm: Memorial Union
4pm: GEF Bldg (King + Webster St)
(Returning approx. 8pm)

Please call Jan at 510-757-5925 to save a seat on the bus, or for endorsements or questions.

Endorsed by: National Nurses United, People's Rights Campaign, AFSCME Local 1077, Wisconsin Resists, John Nichols from the Nation Magazine, AFSCME Local 938, Rock Valley Education Professionals, Executive Board of AFSCME Local 171