Badger Blog Alliance

Sic Semper Tyrannis

Thursday, June 30, 2005

Re: Sticker Shock


I d'loaded the PDF file with the Demamendments and I searched for increase, decrease, cut, raise, and lower.


I give the Dems a F grade on this assigment. They raise raise & raise! Not only do they continue to love to spend, they get repetitive and unimaginative in their writing!

A Police Story.

After reading this scroll down and be VERY sure to read Kevin's note on how the Dems are working to increase the funding of the Teacher's Industrial Complex.

Anyway. A buddy of mine was in, IIRC, Tuscon living and working. He was out puttering around the garage and he noticed every now and then a BB would come rattling around in his garage. He never could see who it was plinking at him with their BB gun but he came up with an idea. He called the police and told them it might put a scare into some children who need a good scare. He made sure that he told them what was happening was minor and in the end not a big deal. He then goes back to his chores outside.

About an hour or so later multiple squad cars come rolling up and the police therein burst out ready for a bad situation. My buddy explained to them everything he told the person on the other end of the phone call and that was the end of it. My buddy wondered, if they thought the situation required multiple squad cars with police officers ready for a serious situation, why did it take them so long?

In the end the ruling against the restraining order lawsuit is not about restraining orders it is about people having to take responsibility for themselves and their protection because the police can not do a whole lot until a crime has been committed and by then it is too late.

Sticker Shock

Anyone wanting to re-live old Warner Brothers cartoons and have their eyes bug out, by all means, read the State Senate Democrats amendment package to the JFC budget.

1. Page 95, line 3: increase the dollar amount for fiscal year 2005−06 by $285,000,000 and increase the dollar amount for fiscal year 2006−07 by $415,000,000 to increase funding for the purposes for which the appropriation is made.
That's just section 1 of A1, Senate Amendment 1, it's the WEAC-demanded education dollars. Who knows how many more they'll have after this one fails?

WisPolitics is also reporting that the State Senate GOP Caucus has reached a compromise within itself and that Schultz has at least 17 votes. Rumors are rampant as to what their package (to be voted on last) contains; and cuts.

re: Cheaper than

First, great discussion everyone. I think this topic really highlights the importance of both self defense and the right to bear arms in a free society. In a free society, a police force is by its very nature a reactive force. This is because the only way you can make a police force a proactive force which can actually prevent crime is to make them into a Gestapo-like secret police which can and usually does seriously violate the civil rights of all. A police force of this type also tends to 'prevent' crime through the abject terror they instill in the populace.

It is always a sad tragedy when you hear of a person who has been killed by someone who that person had a restraining order against. But in exchange for our freedoms and our civil liberties, we have to take on a certain responsibility for our own well being and protection. Years ago this was better understood in this country. As government has grown in the last 100 years, and common sense has shrunk, citizens have come to expect their government to take care of them from cradle to grave. As long as we hold tight to our freedoms, though, we will still be ultimately responsible for protecting out own life and liberty. Thus, the illegality of concealed carry in Wisconsin is the ultimate in muddled logic. The message being sent to Wisconsin citizens right now is, "hey, the police can't be held responsible for preventing someone from taking your life because that's not their role this society. But you know what? We're not going to let you protect your own life, either. You can run, duck, or hide, though. We're cool with that." We are left nearly impotent to protect ourselves against identified threats, and that's why concealed carry is so important to many of us in Wisconsin.

RE: Cheaper than European Treaties

The police are a reactive force, they won't be there until something happens, they can't provide every person with a restraining order round the clock protection, people need to rely on themselves for that.

Personally I think it is crazy to not be prepared to protect your self, to at least be able to delay an attacker until police can react, especially when in your home. If you won't use a gun, get a Louisville Slugger or pepper spray at least, but if you do have a gun, be prepared to use it. If you are not willing to use it to defend your self or your family, it can be used against you and yours.

There are few things more intimidating that the sound of me racking a round into my 12 ga. pump shotgun in a dark house in the middle of the night.

Concealed Carry is a must!

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

RE: Cheaper than European Treaties

Personally, if I were fearful enough of someone else that I went through the effort to get a restraining order, I'd carry a gun - law or no law. If it saves my life, I'll take the illegal carrying of a concealed weapon citation.

RE: Cheaper Than

MA makes some very good points its simple math. There are only so many police officers and the chances that one will be near you when you or your home is being attacked is slight at best. My only beef with MA's post is if someone is breaking down your door you should be meeting him with something with a 4 in the caliber remember kids 9mm was designed to kill Europeans. Takes a real round to stop an American even a criminal one.:)

But on a serious note here is a very good Self defense website it is called Self-defense a basic human right. The sight is written by a woman and is very balanced. If you are someone who is on the "Gun" fence this sight is worth your time.


Cheaper than European Treaties...

Are restraining orders.

One of the lesser talked about SCOTUS decisions involved a woman who sued her local police department. Apparently she had a restraining order against her estranged husband who then kidnapped and murdered her three children. The SCOTUS dismissed the lawsuit and stated there are no constitutional rights to police protection from her husband (see This article for a bit more info on the case). Certainly reads like restraining orders can only be enforced after their violation.

Now, before I get too far down this analysis I have to say one thing. Critics of the position I am about to outline often say this position is one that shows very little faith in the police, that we are actually attacking the brave men and women in blue who protect and serve. That is....well I aim for a PG rating so I will just say that is not true.

The police who work to preserve law and order in our society, you see, are in many ways prevented from being crime preventers. After all the logic of "letting ten criminals go to prevent one innocent from being convicted" also works before bad-guys commit their crimes where it is harder to establish proof. The job of police is more often to secure crime scenes, take statements, apprehend suspects than it is to prevent crime. This is sad, but true. So, the idea is not to become a victim in the first place.

Even if the police were not prevented from preventing crime there is still the basic issue of scarcity of resources.

How do we prevent from being victimized? Well there are many websites out there (and other such resources) that can address that subject in a much deeper way than I can. However, there is another tool being withheld from the Wisconsin citizen and that is concealed carry! Anyone who obtains a restraining order that covers someone who is violent should arm themselves! Furthermore, concealed carry should be an option. At least get and learn how to use a gun for in home protection.

You have a restraining order against Thugo McHenry? What is that piece of paper going to do for you when he comes crashing through your door at 9:37 pm? A .22 or .38 would do much more for you!
Also, remember Thugo could be waiting for you when you leave your office, going to pick up the children, etc.

The real sad part is the Wisconsin Supreme Court has ruled the Wisconsin citizen has the right under the Wisconsin constitution to carry concealed. The state legislature has passed a concealed carry law and Governor Doyle vetoes it. Essentially Governor Doyle is telling the legislature off (of course one expects that) but he is also telling the WSC and the state constitution off (which is not expected).

Russ Feingold, uberblogger

Just wanted to note that Senator Feingold is turning into quite the blogger. Now he's blogging at The Huffington Post. So my question is, would that count as an "in kind" contribution from Arianna to the Feingold for President campaign?

I am Shocked, Shocked!

Marquette will stay the Golden Eagles, thus confirming the farce that was the last two months.

Absurd, simply absurd.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005


He is still there...

Nope, some Turkish league guy. No clue.


Was listening to WImP radio's talk network on the way home from work today and heard Ben say State Senator Michael Ellis is considering a run for Governor!

Well, I have generally defended him but his entry into the race would change nothing for me.

Yahoo! News

Bush: Bloodshed in Iraq Is 'Worth It'

Anybody else see anything wrong with that headline?

FYI: Feingold on CNN

In about two minutes. Debating with Ben Nelson (I think) about the Iraq War and President Bush's speech tonight.

RE: Liberals on KELO

Here's a thread over at DU which shows that uberleftists are just as upset as intelligent, thinking people.

As an aside, eat it Souter.

Liberals on Kelo

A quick perusal of various liberal blogs has led me to believe there's very little mention of the Supreme Court decision to nationalize all formerly "private" property in the country.

Side note: my father-in-law says we never really bought our property, anyway, we just bought the right to pay taxes on it.

End side note.

I find exactly one exception among the blogs I list as "liberal" on my own site: this post by Brewtown Politico:

It's an odd day when I side with the likes of Scalia, Thomas, and Rehnquist, but their concerns were justified.

Okay, so that's pretty lukewarm, but at least he's aimed in the right direction.

Other than that, nothing. Anybody know what the libs are saying out there?

RE: Kohl Talks Sense

E.S.K. - Thing you have to remember with Obey is that he's been there since Vietnam (1969 via special election when ironically the guy who use to have the seat became Nixon's Defense Secretary.). I'm pretty sure he was screaming "We're gonna lose!" in 1991 during the first Gulf War.

In fact, in 1991 he voted against the use of force to liberate Kuwait from Hussein.

I've found that it's best to ignore Dave and simply see him as "that kook from the Northwoods" and end it there.

The line is forming to the right with the number of folks waiting for his retirement to try to get his seat. But considering the clout he has as ranking member of the Appropriations Committee (read: Pork), he's not going anywhere for a while.

Kohl Talks Sense

I am shocked by the senators remarks in the Stevens Point Journal today.

U.S. Sen. Herb Kohl on Monday broke from fellow Democrats who are demanding President Bush set a date for bringing troops home from Iraq...Kohl joins Republican Reps. Mark Green of Hobart, Tom Petri of Fond du Lac and Jim Sensenbrenner of Menomonee Falls, who say a timetable would encourage the insurgents to continue their fight until after the pullout..."The president needs to tell us where he's coming from - what his expectations are and what is his approach," Kohl said, referring to Bush's televised speech tonight. "People in Congress as well as people around the country are wondering where is this going."
A timetable, he said, might make the situation "worse for our goal, which is to provide a stable democracy there.

I can't believe it, but I couldn't agree more. I think we need to know what steps are being taken to advance Iraqi training, and if it is known, why the training has been seemingly slow. However, a timetable and benchmarks just give the terrorists and murderers solid and important targets. Timetables and benchmarks do nothing but aid the terrorists in planning.

Not surprisingly, Dave Obey (socialist - Wausau) has already declared defeat.

"There will be no victory in Iraq," Obey said. "The question is whether there is some way of salvaging the situation."

Dave Obey, socialist, democrat, and speaker for Iraqi terrorists.

Something to Warm your hearts

Hey all long time no post lol The following does have a Wisconsin angle it was taken at a Brewer game in St Pete. Originally posted at Spotted Horse
I thought everyone might enjoy these

While I was on Vaction as you all know I attend a couple of brewers games at Tropicana Field in St Petersburg. This ceremony took place before the start of the second game

The First two pictures are of a group of New US Army Recruits Taking their Oath. The last picture is of a Guard helo crew that had returned from a tour in Iraq and had over 800hrs in active insurgent areas.

So a little poke in the eye to all those who say no one is joining the Military anymore. The photos were taken on Flag day which is also the Birthday of the Best Army on the face of the Earth. High Praise from a former Squid lol.



The Capital Times has stolen my lead!

Will he or won't he?

Plagiarism! I should sue! I invented that phrase!

Hey, this whole article follows my premise. Just better in some places. This part is particularly well put:

Unlike the federal government, vetoing the budget would not result in a shutdown of state operations. Under Wisconsin law, the state continues to use its old budget until a new one is adopted.

Although they don't mention how there would be no spending increase under a continuation budget.

Here's something I didn't know about:

The (veto) powers are so broad that, according to one example in a state Supreme Court case, the governor could rewrite a budget bill to impose the death penalty on parking scofflaws.

Love the ending:

"He should just sign the bill and blame the Republicans," (Brandon) Scholz ("longtime Republican campaign adviser") said.

I'm sure Doyle will take that into consideration. More likely he vetoes both the school funding changes and the property tax freeze, and tries to blame the Republicans for the tax increase.

So, how much you figure I could get if I sued the paper?

Monday, June 27, 2005



Be vewwy vewwy qwiet. I'm hunting moose.

Sunday, June 26, 2005

Severe Thunderstorm Warning: Jefferson County

Is it just me, or does it seem like there's always a Severe Thunderstorm Warning in Jefferson County? I'm beginning to think that it might be more practical for local meteorologists to let us know when there isn't a storm watch/warning in Jefferson County. Y'all sure get some crappy weather down there.

re: Someone is So on my Crap List

I'll take my lumps. My apologies to everyone that the get together for tonight did not occur. It looked very good when it was first proposed, but if memory serves, not only did we not get up to "group" status, our number actually shrunk as some figured out they couldn't make it, myself included. As my plane touched down tonight in Milwaukee, I began to pray that no one was throwing a no hitter. When I heard the score in the Mitchell parking garage, I was briefly relieved until I heard Weeks and Fielder hit their first home runs. Then all I could do was hang my head low in the car. I should have stumped more for this in my K-Lo role here.

Patrick, I'm in mourning, too. I love that guy, and it is going to seem like a long 4-6 weeks. And who knows if he'll get much playing time when he gets back. He's still a defensive stud and a pretty good hitter, but Hall is making it difficult to keep him out of the lineup, and Helms is starting to hit, even if he's a sieve at third.

GB, thanks for sticking up for me. Kevin can put me on his crap list, though. But if I'm still on it when we do finally get together here, I'm not buying him a beer. :-)

Saturday, June 25, 2005

Lightning strikes multiple campers in Fort Atkinson

Storms that moved through Jefferson County tonight produced much needed rainfall but they also featured frequent cloud to ground lightning. At Jellystone Park south of Fort Atkinson, at least 4 people were taken to the hospital after lightning struck in the popular camp ground. I don't have many more details than that at this point, but I will update the story as I learn more.

5 were injured, but no one was struck directly or killed. Source for update: NBC 15.

Someone is So on my Crap List

Just finished watching the Twins/Brewers game. Had it not been cancelled as an outing, we, the BBA would be at it right now.

The Brewers ended up beating the Twins 7-6, great game. But that's not why I'm upset.

What has me fuming is that both Richie Weeks and Prince Fielder hit home runs tonight (Weeks - Solo shot, Fielder - a 3 - run shot).

The first for each.

Friday, June 24, 2005

The Elvoy Creek in March of 05.

Originally uploaded by maurelius.

Doesn't that look cool & refreshing!

Of course at the time we were all griping that it was still cold and wintry (well I was griping at the imminent end of ski season).

This is Good to Know

Remember, it's all bureaucratic errors and poor poll worker training the Democrats and Jim Doyle keep telling us. Nothing to do with the laws currently on the books.

The GAO, General Accounting Office, Congress's Auditing Arm says otherwise.

"GAO's determination that states have put in place few safeguards to verify citizenship is dismaying given the millions of people here illegally," said Sensenbrenner, chairman of the House Judiciary Committee. "It's past time states get busy cleaning up their voter records -- especially in my home state of Wisconsin."

The GAO said that Wisconsin does not have a system in place that lets local election officials receive state felony conviction information. And Wisconsin was the only state in the survey that did not use State Vital Statistics information on dead people to match against voter lists, the GAO said.

Last month, a task force looking into potential voter fraud in Milwaukee found that more than 200 felons voted illegally, people voted twice or used fake names and addresses in more than 100 instances, and some people used dead peoples' names to cast their ballots.

This week, two people -- one on probation and the other on parole -- were charged with voting in last year's election.

Makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside come Election Day.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Very Very Bad

Supreme Court Rules Cities May Seize Homes.

The Supreme Court today effectively expanded the right of local governments to seize private property under eminent domain, ruling that people's homes and businesses -- even those not considered blighted -- can be taken against their will for private development if the seizure serves a broadly defined 'public use.'

In a 5-4 decision, the court upheld the ability of New London, Conn., to seize people's homes to make way for an office, residential and retail complex supporting a new $300 million research facility of the Pfizer pharmaceutical company. The city had argued that the project served a public use within the meaning of the Takings Clause of the Fifth Amendment to the Constitution because it would increase tax revenues, create jobs and improve the local economy.

No Child Left Behind

George Will has an interesting column on No Child Left Behind, and some states' negative reactions to it:

She (Education Secretary Margaret Spellings) says Utah's, and some other states', lack of serenity stems from the fact that NCLB is doing what it is supposed to do -- reveal embarrassing facts.

He goes on to discuss some of those facts.

The major objection to NCLB, at least here in Wisconsin, seems to be that it costs too much, and that the feds aren't providing the money needed.

Is anyone aware of an actual accounting of how much it costs to administer NCLB? I'm not. There doesn't appear to be one on the DPI website. Nor on the WEAC website. Nor on the WASB website.

Even when I had a group of teachers in my office to discuss the state budget last week, I couldn't get an answer to that.

Maybe I'm just not looking in the right place? Or could it be that Will is right, and the program is proving to be embarrassing to the educational establishment?

Here's an interesting fact, though: according to the Department of Public Instruction, federal education funding in Wisconsin has averaged better than 10% growth per year since 2001, the year NCLB went into effect.

Cultural Differences.

This story was pointed out by Little Green Footballs.

It details how charges are being pressed against a Detroit area man for beating his sister and breaking her back. The reason? For dating a non-Muslim guy. The parents did nothing to help the girl and would not take her to the hospital so authorities are considering the removal of their parental rights.

Good Luck!

Brat Day in Madison

I love Brat Day in Madison. It's just one giant brat fry and softball game mixed in with a little 'mingling' from Sheboygan area business people and the Chamber of Commerce.

This almost got a SNAFUed this year with the resulting Russ Decker/Tavern League run-in with the State Ethics Board. Instead of $5 for a plate of brats, beans, and a beverage; it became a $7 plate of brats, beans, and a beverage.

Besides, this is the only thing that matters on Brat Day in Madison.
The Republicans buried the Democrats, 16-8, in the legislative softball game, putting five runs up in the last inning to salt the contest away.
The umpires during the game include the Governor, the Attorney General, State Supreme Court Justices, and other Executive Branch Department heads.

The Governor does not have the power to veto away runs. How unfortunate?

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Terry Porter: FIRED

Bucks head coach Terry Porter has been fired.

According to ESPN the Bucks are looking to hire Nate McMillan or Flip Saunders.

Still No Love from the DNC

Man, all Ohio all the time with those folks at the DNC. It's not like the U.S. Attorney's office has actually found 4,609 more votes than voters in the City of Milwaukee alone. (Oh wait...)

Well, Dean is placating the the Kos-heads and the MoveOn.Orgers again. (HT -
Byron York in the Corner.) The DNC has issued a "study" on voter irregularities in Ohio.
Democratic National Committee chairman Howard Dean today said that "It's clear that there was massive voter suppression" in Ohio in the 2004 presidential election. Dean pointed to an "appearance of impropriety" in the actions of Republican election officials in Ohio, adding that, "It's been widely reported over the last years that Republicans do target African-Americans for voter suppression." Dean said that Democrats could "not conclude one way or the other" whether John Kerry would have won if the alleged suppression had not taken place. Addressing possible Republican objections to his charges, Dean said that Republicans "don't care what the facts are" and that "blather and hot air" will not change the facts of the situation in Ohio. Dean made the statements this morning at a press conference in Washington unveiling a new DNC study of the Ohio vote.
There are words I could use to describe Dean and his "study" at the moment, but children might be reading this.

RNC Chair Ken Mehlman has already issued a statement (also through York)

Republican National Committee chairman Ken Mehlman just released a statement on the new Democratic study alleging massive irregularities in Ohio: "The report is pure political fiction," Mehlman writes. "The undisputed facts in Ohio are: Democrat officials had to be stopped by the courts from misleading voters about the day of the election; a Democrat affiliated group paid a worker in crack cocaine to submit fraudulent voter forms; and Democrat allies attempted to disenfranchise Ohio voters by submitting registration cards for Mary Poppins, Dick Tracy and Michael Jordan. Republicans will continue to register and inspire new voters, make it easier for everyone to vote at the polls and protect everyone's franchise from being cancelled out by illegal or fraudulent registration."

Russ Feingold, we're still waiting for your thoughts on what's happening in Milwaukee. Perhaps you can make it known the next time you're in Mississippi?

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Great Sign at Ballgame Tonight

I won't write my feelings, I saved that for Righting Wisconsin (suffice to say I am seething right now) but I did think everyone would enjoy this sign that the folks next to me were holding.

Racine School Referendum Passes

Glad to see that lying, scare tactics, and God knows what else still work in Wisconsin Politics.
Racine Unified School District voters in favor of a $6.45 million referendum to help close the gap in the district's multimillion-dollar deficit took the lead in early returns Tuesday.

With about 65% of the ballots counted in heavy voting, the unofficial result was 11,371 in favor of the proposal, and 8,506 against allowing the district to exceed spending caps.

The referendum comes on the heels of a more expensive $8.9 million two-year spending proposal that voters defeated in April. In that vote, 10,188 voted "No" and 8,492 voted "Yes" to that spending proposal.

Never Again

Last year, I went to one of the Brewers-Cubs games in Miller Park Wrigley Field North. I had great Diamond Box seats--the best seats I ever had at a major league baseball game. Greg Maddux was pitching so I knew great talent was on the field.

I was embarassed to be a Brewers fan that night. Cubs maniacs filled 60+% of the seats, and they weren't quiet. I felt like a foreigner in my own country. I told myself never again will I go to a Cubs-Brewers game at Miller Park. You could give me first-row seats behind home plate and I'll decline them. I don't want to be surrounded by 20,000 Cubs fans in Milwaukee.

My only highlight was seeing Russell "the Muscle" Branyon launch his first home run into orbit as a Brewer. After contact my jaw dropped and my mouth stayed open for two minutes. I never saw a ball hit so hard in my life.

RE: Long Night Ahead

I am shocked and appalled that you would denigrate my Crew, nay my countries passtime, by comparing it to a Budget vote.

Kevin, I call on you to apologize for your comments!

Okay, I'm kidding. I am going again tonight despite my handful of near fistfights last night with moronic Cubs fans, and will be enjoying the weather and the fine pitching of Victor the Vampire Santos. Since it is a night game he will pitch masterfully and the Swingkings will provide him with some run support!

Go Crew!

Wade on the Yahoo! Buzz Index

The Yahoo! Buzz Index says Dwayne Wade is currently ranked #2 in searches for specific sports jerseys. He's behind somebody named Manu Ginobili, who plays for the Spurs.

Never heard of him.

Long Night Ahead

Wispolitics is reporting that the State Assembly will begin debating the state budget at 5:30 tonight.

The Dems are positioning 100+ amendments, so it could be a long night involved for all.

You can listen here. I will likely be watching the Brewers and Cubs on FSN North. Considering current history on both the Budget and the could be painful to watch either one.

Feingold for Pres

Russ Feingold placed fourth (including "undecided," which placed second) in an online straw poll.

Wesley Clark won the thing. Hillary placed third, just a couple dozen votes ahead of ol' Russell.

Via The Corner.

Journal Sentinel, wholly owned subsidiary of WEAC?

Patrick pointed this out yesterday, but with E.S.K.'s catch, I think it should be pointed out again. The Journal Sentinel has a very high incidence of letters from Union-Educational complex lately.

Who do I owe the royalties to for the "wholly owned subsidiary" line? I'm good for it.

Verne Meisner funeral

Just a reminder for polka fans. The funeral for Wisconsin Polka legend Verne Meisner will be held at 2 pm today at First English Lutheran Church in Whitewater. There will also be a "musical" memorial to Verne at the American Legion in Whitewater following the funeral.

July 15, 1980

Yes, I am an old enough fogey to remember that day in the Chippewa Valley nearly 25 years ago, even if it has turned quite foggy in my brain. For those of you for whom that date has no meaning, let me fill you in a little.

July 15, 1980 started as a pretty hot day. I remember going to Irvine Park in Chippewa Falls with my parents early in the day. It seems to me that storms were on everyone's lips that day, although I do not recall clearly. I just remember having a 5 year old's sense of forboding tht entire day. I was afraid of storms, but I didn't really like them much, either. The day carried on, with some time spent at Grandma's. As darkness began to set in, it was hastened by a nasty storm blowing in from the west. And then the tornado sirens went off.

Back at that time, we lived in a duplex, and the basement was in the neighbor's side. Mom hauled me into their kitchen, and down into that old, dank, damp basement we went. I hated it down there, I hated it even more this time because my dad and his brother decided that the situtation wasn't all that serious, so they stayed in the garage working on a car. I wanted my dad in that basement, and I suspect my mom did to, but she really wasn't in a position to leave me alone and go up into the storm to get him.

Then the basement door flew open. Down the stairs came my dad, seemingly bounding down three stairs at a time. Following behind was my uncle, who I believe banged his head on the way down. The storm had gotten bad enough that they were frightened into getting below ground. There was talk that we may have to stay down there all night, which just made it all the worse for me. I feel bad for everyone in that basement that day, because I made a bad situation worse by crying almost the entire time.

Late that night we emerged. There was some wind damage in Chippewa Falls. We had trees down in the neighborhood, and I believe the power was out. But we'd been spare in Chippewa Falls. About 8-10 miles away, in the northern reaches of Eau Claire, straightline winds had been devestating. Homes were heavily damaged or destroyed, and it actually took them a little while to determine if it had been a tornado or straightline winds (it was the latter). Residents in the area have some fascinating stories ranging from the winds blowing in to objects being picked up and moved in their yards to light objects which never moved at all. It was one of the worst storms to hit the Chippewa Valley in probably 30 years.

Why do I bring this up? Well, as the 25th anniversary approaches, the Eau Claire Leader Telegram is soliciting stories from people who remember the storm. My story is pedestrian because I was too young to remember the storm in vivid detail. I suspect that there are 1 or 2 BBA readers who do remember this storm, though. If so, I encourage you to check out the details at the L-T and submit your story. Not only are they interesting to read, but local historians will thank you well after we are all gone.

re: Shhhh

Okay, to liven things up, nudity is allowed at the BBA. But only for the next 4 hours.

Monday, June 20, 2005

Not always what they seem to be

In tomorrow's paper, there will be two letters published, both critical of the Republican budget plans, but the two writers don't fully identify themselves, Stop in at BadgerBlogger and see who they really are.

Let's Play Make Believe

I want total honesty from my fellow BBA members on this one.

It's Wednesday June 22nd. You're a member of the GOP caucus in the Assembly - Do you vote for this budget or not? Why?

My answer: No.

I've long believed that this thing is more about November 2006 than any sort of long-term fiscal constraint on the part of the State Legislature. While I appreciate the continued efforts of those seeking a property tax freeze, it's pointless if state spending continues to grow.

I go back to my feelings back earlier this year: F*** the Freeze, Stop the Spending.

Until that happens, there's no state budget that I could get behind.


It's very very quiet.

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Sunday Insight coverage

Sunday Insight coverage is up at Badger Blogger. Mikel Holt's tortured defense of Lee Holloway was a big part of my coverage, Holt is a liberal, but the lengths he went to today really pushed him to the Howling Moon Bat wing of the spectrum.

They also discussed the Wisconsin Socialized Medicine plan and a state wide smoking ban for all restaurants while preventing smoking bans in bars.

Friday, June 17, 2005

BBA member called up

One of the Badger Blog Alliance's first members, Blog General, has announced at Brain Post that his National Guard unit has been called up and will be mobilized on August 20. Head on over to his blog and wish him well in the comments.

**This post will remain at the top of the page all day Friday. Please see below new posts**

Fiendgold's Futures vs. Thompson's Futures.

At the website Intrade people can buy and sell futures contracts on current events. US politics is one such set of events (they are now have a market for Gitmo closure contracts) you can go to buy & write futures contracts on. In light of this talk about the Senator Fiendgold's presidential aspirations goes here is what the Intrade future's market says about Fiendgold's future as the 2008 Presidential nominee:

Bid/Ask: $0.3/$0.6
Last: $0.5
Volume: 684.

Here is what Intrade says about Thompson's:
Bid/Ask: 1.0/1.1
Last: 1.0
Volume: 427

The payout is $100 - purchase price if the contract you buy happens otherwise you forfeit your purchase price. E.g. you buy a Thompson contract at $1.00, he goes on to become the nominee you get $100 - 1 = $99.00.

So the futures do not look so bright for either WI candidate. Of all the candidates across both parties the market is guessing SHrillary has the best chances of being a nominee (48.8/49.5). On the GOP side George Allen has the highest bid & ask but McCain has the highest volume.

Feingold-media love fest continues

That hum you hear right now is the low level buzz in the media about a Russ Feingold presidential run in '08. Now it is the out of state Strib beating the drum. If Hillary's triangulation doesn't win over the left coast libs and the moderate Dems, Feingold is going to be threat. The media just seems to like the guy way too much.

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Fred Phelps.

I heard from WiMP radio that Fred Phelps and his merry band of protestors is to be in Antigo next week to protest at the funeral of a fallen soldier. They will marching and claiming the death of the soldier is a result of God's punishment for the rampant sin this nation engages in.

Fred Phelps was the guy who basically said Matthew Shepard got what he deserved.


Public Schools in Wisconsin

One hundred and sixty years ago today (via the Wisconsin Historical Society):

"The first free public school in the State of Wisconsin was opened in Southport (now Kenosha) on June 16, 1845."

That event was quickly followed by the first press release threatening disaster unless that school got a lot more public money.

Appleton Native on NPR.

Brian Riedel from Appleton (and he OCRP member) will be on Fresh Air today. Brian is a director (IIRC and his area of focus is on federal spending and budgeting) at the Heritage Foundation and will be discussing the federal deficit with a fellow from the Brookings Institution. Fresh Air is on just before (makes it from 3:00-4:00 IIRC) All Things Considered and can be heard on the music network.

RE: Interrogating Prisoners

I may be pointing out the elephant in the room here, but I think there are more practical reasons for "torture" than garnering information.

There is a reason I won't ride the Marakesh Express, I don't want to wind up in a Turkish prison. If playing Christina Aguilera music and parading women around naked while depriving men of sleep (when did Gitmo turn into a weekend in Vegas?) makes a few murderes stop and ponder their fates if they are caught, all the better.

It's the old head-on-a-pike theory, the deterrence of perceived violence. I see nothing wrong with letting the world know that if we catch a terrorist, they aren't going to get a stay in Club Med, they are going to be punished and grilled for information.

If anyone really believes that the treatment we give these bastard makes on iota of difference to how our soldiers are treated, they need to wake up, turn off NPR, and take a peek into the real world now and then. These are evil people trying to do evil things to literally kill you and I.

We are at war, you namby pamby pinko pacifists, and war is unpleasant. Go hug a tree or save a whale and leave the real world problems to people with a backbone.

Landslide referendum in Oregon, WI. Vote tally, 1-0

Randy Way of Oregon, WI, is a minor national celebrity today who is in the middle of his 15 minutes of fame. It seems that Randy was the only eligible voter in a referendum to annex 80 acres from the town to the village. The kicker? State law did not allow for the polls to be closed early, so election workers had to stay on for the entire 13 hour shift.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Interrogating Prisoners & Gitmo.

One common clichè regarding Gitmo is how information given under torture is unreliable. Well yeah, and so is all other information these creeps give.

These guys are not going to get the soft cushion prodding and then all of a sudden tell everything they know. They are going to try to lie. When they think they may be telling the truth they may be giving up obsolete information or information that is just wrong (perhaps their superiors gave them faulty information on purpose). Interrogators understand all of this and when a guy says "Osama Bin Laden is hiding out in The Frontier Tavern in Conover Wisconsin" they are not going to drop everything they are doing to go to the Frontier. They are going to treat that info as a puzzle piece. Eventually the big picture becomes clear and we know which pieces do and do not belong the puzzle being put together.

This of course says nothing about the limbo bar of the torture definition.

K-Lo Declares War With Wisconsin

Truce! A mighty woman with a torch unites us with the frogs of Paris.:

So, go back to your Dom Perignon, branch out from the Wisconsin cheese now and again, and support the non-ruling caste Frenchmen. And, French friends, if you still feel like joiners, we don't have a 51st state ... yet.

I knew we should have siezed power when we had the chance! WHERE is my trans-quadraplennial transmogrifying distributor?

Gestapo Tactics

We have had an event here in Hudson were what can only be described as Gestapo tactics, By whom and by who you ask? None other than our local school board. The tactic was to remove any citizen who's view is not consistent with their own. The citizen's who have been outspoken with the board have basically been the districts watchdogs did nothing to warrant such actions. For some time now, the district has only let citizens speak for 5 minutes and only at the tail end of meetings. Unbelievable!!! Get the lowdown here.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

WImP Radio Today.

While I missed Owen this morning I did pick up something interesting in the Afternoon.

Dean Kaufert the GOP state senator from Appleton was on. Wow, you could not believe the people that were calling in (well I guess knowing the crowd here, we all understand what the typical WImP Radio caller is all about). One woman calling from Appleton basically accused the GOP of gutting the schools and since she knows she lives in a high tax state they might as well max it out! Same thing from the next caller!

Senator Kaufert pointed out the obvious. That Appleton just raised school spending on its own and if any municipality wanted to do so they could put it before the voters and have it happen locally. Of course no amount of pointing out nothing is actually being cut actually makes these people believe differently. The budgets are being increased and if we went along with the teacher's industrial complex's (TIC's) suggestion, there would still be plenty of WImP Radio callers whining how the children are suffering under Republicans.

One fellow called in griping about the rise in UW tuition (guess who he was blaming it on) and the guy just rambled and rambled and rambled and rambled....on. He said he had a question and every time Ben would prompt him to ask the question the guy would pull out his paper and keep on rambling on about all sorts of wide and varied facts. Finally the guy sensed even Ben had enough and he asked some sort of very inconsequential question, the point was not the question but the points that were written on his sheet.

Claudia does not pay a whole lot of attention to politics but even she could pick up on the idiocy of these callers!

How badly bitten is your tongue Owen?

The Journal Sentinel Assesses School Vouchers

As Lance links to below, the Journal Sentinel is in the middle of a series examining the effectiveness, pluses, and minuses of the school voucher program. Paul from the Electric Commentary has a nice assessment of Part I of the series. Look for more from him later this week.

On a personal note, my nephew attends Eastbrook Academy and has done so on the voucher program for many years. Eastbrook is one of the schools listed as a high performing city school. I would like to see the voucher program extended even further into universal education vouchers as I argue here. Dismantling the public education system as we know it while still keeping our corporate commitment to education may be the key to having a primary and secondary education system that actually prepares its students to compete in the new global marketplace.


Today during the interview on WPR, they seemed to spend an unnecessarily long time discussing "compromise." One of Owen's 10 rules of governance is that compromise isn't a victory in and of itself. The host and callers seemed to conclude from this statement and Owen's explanation of it that the only successful compromise is the one where the conservative wins and the liberal loses. This is simply not the case.

Right now there is a piece of birthday cake on the kitchen table. Two of my kids are eyeing it longingly. How can the kids reach a compromise? The older one could have it and the younger one would cry. The younger one could have it and the older one would cry. They could have a winner-takes-all brawl on the kitchen floor. They could postpone the decision until later and both would be temporarily satisfied. They could give the cake to their brother and not have any themselves. They could throw the cake in the trash and no one could have it at all. Or they could cut the cake in half and each have an equal amount. Each of those options is a possible solution. Four are compromises, where at minimum, they may or may not get some of what they want, but the other guy doesn't fare much better: postpone the decision (though temporary), throw it out, give it to their brother, and divide it equally. Still, only one is a real compromise, one where each side gets some of what that they want: dividing the piece of cake equally between the two of them.

Yes, the only effective form of compromise allows each side to half their cake and eat it, too.

JS Online: New school, new attitude

Anyone who's got a few minutes to spare from glowing over Owen's WPR interview this morning, make sure and read this story about one family's experience with the school choice program.

An excerpt:

Early critics of the Milwaukee Parental Choice Program charged that it would 'cream' the best students out of the public school district. But Ashli, with her lackluster grades but standout potential, is actually a much more typical type of student in the program.

'There's no parent dumb enough to pull an 'A' student out of a school,' said Julia Hutchinson, the principal of St. Adalbert School, 1913 W. Becher St.

Budapest To Do What Doyle Refuses...Honor Reagan

Guardian Unlimited | World Latest | Budapest May Erect Bust of Reagan in Park

The Budapest city council is likely to approve a plan to erect a bust of President Reagan in a park in that city, because
" Ronald Reagan was the American president who most contributed to the democratic changes in this country,'' said Democratic Forum councilman Laszlo Szoke. ``He was one of the most meaningful conservative politicians who helped end communism.''

It's nice to see some people get it, and move beyond petty politics.

Re: Good Job Owen

Yep, I agree. Owen had his points and stuck to them, and didn't let a couple of hostile callers (or what I thought was a tough follow-up question from the host about judges legislating) get him flustered.

He sounded like he has really given these topics lots of thought (practice debates with Wendy, maybe?) and knew what he wanted to say.

Best moment, I thought: the second caller - Keith or Kevin or something - said all the "bipartisanship in the legislature" is "counter-productive." He meant partisanship, not bipartisanship, but I found I agreed with him more the way he actually said it.

Good job, Owen

I caught most of Owen's time on WPR this morning, and he did a good job discussing his article The 10 Rules of Governance. He even deftly handled the panting callers who would start on point and then spin out of control, accusing conservatives of such things as trying to establish a Kingdom. Good job, Owen.

Monday, June 13, 2005

Good luck, Owen

Good luck on Wisconsin Public Radio tomorrow morning, Owen. We'll all be listening, and I'm sure you'll do well.

As reminder, Owen will be on your local WPR radio station from 7 am to 8 am tomorrow morning.

New Berlin School Board Recall

I just want to let you guys know that the New Berlin School Board recall story is not over, CRG is looking at getting involved against the recall, but no decision has been made yet.

The more that is learned about the organizers of the recall effort, the more their true intentions become.

Jackson "Not Guilty" -- on all counts

Drudge was right; I heard him saying weeks ago that the prosecutor just didn't have a case here.

But still, Michael Jackson is just so ... creepy. That's not proof he's a child molester, of course, but I guess I wasn't surprised by the charges in the first place, and I wouldn't have been surprised by a few guilty verdicts.

The thing that's really hard to understand is the loyalty and devotion of his fans. Don't those people find him at all creepy and disturbing?

Feeling 'Royal'

The Brewers are calling up Prince Fielder to serve as DH against the Devils Rays and Blue Jays this week.

Brewers general manager Doug Melvin confirmed this afternoon that Fielder, 21, would come up strictly to serve as the DH in three-game series at Tampa Bay and Toronto. Melvin said Fielder then would be returned to Class AAA Nashville.

"We figured the way we’re hitting, we’ll see if he can jump-start the offense a little bit," said Melvin. "We talked about this a couple of weeks ago.

"We’ve got some guys banged up right now, so we’re a little thin. And with the offense struggling, we’re looking for an offensive boost."

While the move smacks of desperation somewhat, the Brewers might be catching Fielder at the right time. The powerful first baseman has been on a home run binge of late, socking two more out of the park Sunday in Nashville’s 7-1 victory over Iowa.

Fielder, a first-round draft pick in 2002, was batting .253 with 15 home runs and 47 runs batted in for the Sounds. He had a .507 slugging percentage, with 37 walks and 57 strikeouts.

The Brewers’ options to serve as a DH in the American League parks were limited because of recent injuries to third baseman Jeff Cirillo (sprained wrist) and catcher Damian Miller (strained groin). Slugger Russell Branyan is on the disabled list with a broken finger, eliminating another possible option.

Go get 'em kid.

Sunday, June 12, 2005

Radio Bleg

A buddy of mine was just on 620 telling Stuart Scott to "take a hike." I was watching the Cubs-Sox game so I didn't hear it. I despise Stuart Scott and was hoping one of you had recorded the show. I really want to hear this segment but have no idea how, unless someone by chance recorded it.

Any help is much appreciated!

Sunday Insight

If you missed it and want to know what they discussed, I have my recap of Sunday Insight up

Tornado Saturday in Hammond, WI

Here's a picture of the tornado, and here's the story. 22 homes were damaged

WI Leftists Calling for Impeachment

Daily Kos

Seems like the Wisconsin Democratic Party decided at their meeting on Saturday to adopt a resolution (about as meaningful as a UN resolution no doubt) "CALLING ON THE UNITED STATES CONGRESS TO INITIATE IMPEACHMENT PROCEEDINGS AGAINST PRESIDENT BUSH, VICE PRESIDENT CHENEY AND DEFENSE SECRETARY RUMSFELD FOR HIGH CRIMES AND MISDEMEANORS."

WHEREAS, the Downing Street Memo shows that Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld began planning and executing the war on Iraq before seeking Congressional and UN approval;

WHEREAS, UN weapons inspectors showed prior to the invasion that there were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq; and

WHEREAS, there is further mounting evidence that the Administration lied or misled about "mushroom clouds," "connections to 9/11," and "war as a last resort" as they sought UN, Congressional, and public approvals;

THEREFORE, RESOLVED, the DPW asks Congress to immediately begin impeachment proceedings against President Bush, Vice President Cheney and Defense Secretary Rumsfeld.

While this won't get any play, the Downing Street Memo is sure to get some exposure this week, as Komrad Conyers will stage his publicity stunt by delivering this letter to the White House Gates.

Stay tuned, this could be quite an interesting week, as ultra-leftists everywhere make fools of themselves.

Saturday, June 11, 2005

Re: Interview on WPR

Correction: I'm very much looking forward to the interview on TUESDAY MORNING. That's TUESDAY MORNING from 7 to 8 for those of you with a reading deficiency such as myself.

Owen, I'll be playing ball while you are on, but I'm going to show my geek side to my teammates by having a radio in the dugout. If you get a call like this, it'll be me:

"Hi Owen (background noise: Let's go Jib! Ping) I was wondering if you would tell all of us (panting) what goes into being a successful blogger (Background noise: You're out!) excuse me a second. (Background noise: What the hell do you mean I'm out?!) Sorry about that. Anyway, what goes into being a successful blogger such as yourself?"

Anyway, have fun on air Tuesday night, and good luck!

Re: Interview on WPR

I listen to WPR most mornings on the way to work. It gets my blood moving better than caffeine (although I consume a healthy dose of that too). I have a good idea of the kinds of callers to expect ;-)

Re: Interview on WPR

Hey, Owen, that's great. Boy, an hour-long show. That's a call-in show, too. Get ready for the wing-nut phone calls.

Or, geez, I hope you don't get one of those duds where nobody calls in. How embarrassing would that be!

Come to think of it, as fellow members of the BBA, maybe it's up to us to make sure that doesn't happen to Owen. It would be embarrassing for us, too, wouldn't it? Kinda like watching a family member make an ass of himself in public?

I think we should each prepare a question to call in and ask, just in case they don't get any phone calls. For example:

Is it true you were named after Luke's uncle?

What exactly are the rules regarding nudity at the BBA?

Why are there exactly ten rules of governance? Isn't it a little odd that there would be such an exact round number of rules?

You say the state and federal constitutions are like the Bible - are you some kind of theocratic nut case?

Which is better: the Republic or the Federation?

If Howard Dean and Jocelyn Elders had a child, would the effect on its personality be exponential, or would the parents cancel each other out like two negatives multiplied?

And now that you have that image in your head, how long before you'll be able to eat?

Is it true both Republican governor candidates have agreed to appoint you to the U.S. Senate if they're elected and Russ Feingold leaves office?

Can you get me Lance Burri's autograph?

Just some suggestions. Feel free to come up with your own.

Here's the link to the list of stations, so we can all hear Owen this Tuesday from 7 to 8 am. The number to call is 1-800-642-1234. That's 1-800-642-1234. One more time: 1-800-642-1234.

Call early. Call often.

Friday, June 10, 2005

Re: Spivey trade

I think it's a great trade, we get a pitcher that would start on most teams in the league, his win/loss record is deceptive because he is on a horrible team. All we loose is an underachieving infielder that is batting .236...My opinion, that's a great trade.

As for Rickie Weeks, he's batting .320 in AAA with decent power. There is concern about his fielding and has 10 errors, but he replaces Spivey with 7. I think it's time for our minor leaguers to put up or shut up, I know it takes time to develop, but it's time to push them and see if they will actually be players or not.

RE: Spivey Trade

I hate to burst any bubbles, but this really doesn't (in my opinion) accelerate the timetable for bringing up Weeks. More likely we will see Trent Durrington called up to play the role of backup while JJ Hardy gets more consistent playing time and finds his swing. As much as people are clamoring for Weeks, it still doesn't make sense right now. Bill Hall is killing the ball, and to bail on Hardy would be foolish at best. Unless Yost is planning on playing Hall at third, don't expect to see Weeks in a Brewers uni before the All-Star break (which would have happened even if they hadn't "found a taker" for Spivey).

As I am writing this I see that Haudricort is saying Weeks will be called up after the game tonight. I think this is a bad move on many levels, mostly because now we have the same rotational problem we had before moving Spivey. The thing I liked about moving Spivey is it would give Hardy and Hall the knowledge of starting every day. I hope, for Weeks, Hardy, and the ballclub in general, that they either bring up Durrington as a backup or move Hall to third. Weeks being the third MI does nothing to help his defense or improve his overall game. Benching Hardy now could hurt him irreprably.

Just my two cents.

Brewers trade Spivey

The Brewers found a taker for the under performing Junior Spivey in the Washington Nationals. The Nats had their own ball player they wanted to unload, Tomo Ohka. Ohka found himself on Nats manager Frank Robinson's s*** list after Robinson attempted to removed Ohka from a game on Saturday and Ohka refused to give Robinson the ball and turned his back on him. But the most interesting part of this trade is not Spivey and Ohka, but the fact that we will be seeing Rickie Weeks in a Brewer uniform very soon.

Interview on WPR

I am very excited to disclose that I will be interviewed for an hour on Wisconsin Public Radio on Tuesday, June 14th, from 7 AM to 8 AM. The subject of the interview will be my latest column, 10 Rules Of Governance.

Be sure to tune in to FM 90.7 in Milwaukee. You can check here for other stations in Wisconsin.

It should be fun.

Only in Hollywood - Celebrity Air

Heard this on ESPN Radio's "The Dan Patrick Show" when I went out to lunch in Sheboygan today. Sounded too weird to be true.

It is.
Please note that the air sample captured at the premiere MAY contain air molecules that came in direct contact with the celebrities who were in attendance, including Lindsay Lohan, Adam Brody. Kerry Washington, Kimberly Stewart, David Hasselhoff, Cindy Crawford, Jason Bateman and many, many more.
It's currently bidding at $1075. God help us all.

Better question: Who's Adam Brody?

Forget 50 plus years of marriage. Who gets the Badger tickets?

Jim Stingl has a sad/amusing story in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel today. A couple in their 80's, after having been married 57 years, are legally separating. And fighting over their Badger football ducats.

More on Wal-Mart

The Appleton Post Crescent lines up against forcing Wal-Mart to provide insurance:

That might cover the state's cost for employees on BadgerCare, but at the expense of consumers, including the low-income and elderly who seek out bargains at discount stores like Wal-Mart. Or at the cost of jobs, potentially thrusting those workers into jobs that don't offer insurance, or into a state program for the uninsured.

Amen. I made a similar argument in a column last week.

Here's an excerpt from a comment I got on that column (emphasis added to my favorite part):

We have 4 children, and make less than $25,000 a year. Is that because of Wal-Mart? No. Wal-Mart had no impact in that area of our lives, because we didn't let it. Wal-Mart is a company, like anyone else. Why should Wal-Mart, or any business (Government included) be forced to offer health insurance to their employees? If a business doesn't want to offer healthcare to it's employees, who are we to say that they have to? If we don't like their business policies, then we shouldn't shop there. If enough people don't like their business policies, they will shut down.

Amen again.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Wisconsin polka legend ill

This being Wisconsin, I suspect that there is at least one or two polka fans who stop by the Badger Blog Alliance. Given that, I'd like to pass along our prayers and well wishes to the Verne Meisner family. Verne has long been a staple of the polka scene, and his son Steve has announced on his message board that Verne is quite ill. So Wisconsin polka fans, say a little (or big) prayer for him and his family.

Indian Mascots and Nicknames

So I'm driving home today and heard a little of Ben Sherman on WTMJ, talking Marquette University and Indian nicknames. One of the things he mentioned:

A Peter Harris Research Group poll, published in the March 4, 2002 issue of Sports Illustrated, showed that 81% of Native Americans support the use of Indian nicknames in high school and college sports, and 83% of Native Americans support the use of Indian mascots and symbols in professional sports. Sports Illustrated concluded that the 'poll suggests that although Native American activists are virtually united in opposition to the use of Indian nicknames and mascots, the Native American population sees the issue far differently.'

The link goes to a group called "Honor the Chief," which organized to protect the University of Illinois' nickname and mascot.

Yes, I'm linking to a U of I group. I know. Distasteful. Sorry about that. Place has been going downhill ever since Jib let a Bears fan in here.

I haven't been able to find any more info about that survey. I'd like to have a look at the methodology. Somebody here must be better at this than I am.

Xoff needed Fisking

Xoff at is all bent out of shape because David Clarke is **gasp** not a Liberal, so I felt the need to respond.

Pryor Approved

The final Bush Nominee under the compromise of the "Gang of 14" was confirmed. William Pryor, Russ Feingold's friend, was confirmed 53-45.

Roll Call is here. Salazar (D-CO) and Nelson (D-NE) voted for Pryor, Chafee (R-RI), Snowe (R-ME) and Collins(R-ME) voted against.

Jeffords (I-VT) and Murkowski (R-AK) were not present for the vote.

What happens next, since all nominees part of the deal are through, is anyone's guess?

UPDATE - Forgot the link initially, it is now in place.

Big Shock: Public Disagrees with ACLU and Feingold

Senator Russ Feingold is making a lot of headlines being the vocal opposition to the Patriot Act. You can read his comments on the President's push to have the Act extended here. Russ, once again thinks that all the world (read: the MSM) is behind him.

However, polling data shows us otherwise.

Against a backdrop of heightened public concern about government intrusions, six in 10 Americans favor extending the Patriot Act, but majorities oppose expanding it by adding new FBI powers to issue subpoenas and access U.S. mail.

Fifty-nine percent in an ABC News/Washington Post poll favor continuing the additional investigative authority in terrorism investigations that was granted to the FBI starting in 2001. President Bush urged such an extension of the Patriot Act today.
Count me in the opposition to the FBI having subpoena power - courts issue those, not law enforcement.

This is likely an even higher number who support the extension of the Patriot Act. It's the same ABC News/Washington Post poll that Ankle-Biting Pundits took apart (and others) yesterday as being skewed to Democrats.

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Rogers Brown Confirmed

She who was seen as the bane of MoveOn.Org, PFAW, the Congressional Black Caucus, the ACLU, and every left-wing group known in America was confirmed.

She who was seen as the one who would re-institute the stone age, was confirmed.
The Senate on Wednesday confirmed California judge Janice Rogers Brown for the federal appeals court, ending a two-year battle filled with accusations of racism and sexism and shadowed by a dispute over Democratic blocking tactics.
Congratulations and may you serve long and with honor. Roll call is here. Both Feingold and Kohl voted "No" in the 56-43 vote.

Ben Nelson (D-NE) voted with the GOP. He's voting to save his political life.

Beverage Warning!

Massive Badger Hockey News!

JS Online: DayWatch

Though not as big as it should be, since the maroon and mustard Gophers led by that traitor Phil Kessel won't be in the game. There WILL be an outdoor game at Lambeau Field in 2006!

This will be a heck of an event. The Badgers should be fantastic next year and this is their chance to (probably) play a rare nationally tellevised game.

Brewers Draft FYI

Just a heads up for those who still care. I will be semi-live blogging round 19-50ish (the draft goes til teams decide they don't want to take anyone else, in other words until everyone related to anyone even remotely involved in MLB is drafted) starting at 11 o'clock today. I probably won't catch every Wisconsin native since they have zero space between picks today, but I will try and get every Brewer pick, and hopefully a little background or pertinent info on most. I will be paying special attention to any catcher selected. (If the guy they took yesterday doesn't sign with UCLA, he could be special.)

Also, if you haven't made it to a game this week, consider it your duty as a Wisconsonite to make it tonight. I went Monday and Tuesday and can't tonight because the bowling league started, so I need someone to pick me up.

Anyway, from 11-5:30, I'll be firing away to keep up with the draft, so check in periodically with notes of encouragement.

Also, a Ryan Braun note. Miami will play Florida this weekend in the Coral Gables Super Regional for a right to go to the College World Series in Omaha. Their first game is this Saturday at 11 am and I think it will be on ESPN or ESPN2, so we get a chance to watch the guy in action. Rumors have it that he may be a fast-tracker, on the Crew in 2007.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Newsflash: Howard Dean is a nutcase

First a hardy hello to Badger Blog Alliance readers. I apologize that my first post here has been so late in coming, but hopefully the birth of my daughter two weeks ago is enough excuse. If you haven't yet, check out my personal blog here.

Anyways, on to the news. While this will come as a great shock to many BBA readers, Howard Dean has apparently criticized the Republican Party by calling them "a white Christian party." I agree with the sentiments of Jon Fleischmann who upon hearing this comment exclaimed, "Where do I sign up on a committee to keep Howard Dean? He's the best thing to happen to the GOP in ages."

Mr. Dean must either be very ignorant or simply choosing to ignore the magnitude of the outreach to Hispanics and black Americans by new RNC Chairman Ken Mehlman. I think these kinds of efforts are key to a lasting Republican majority in America and Wisconsin. The interesting question is what the Democratic Party will look like in 25 years. My guess is that blacks and Hispanics will be voting majority Republican, and Democrats will be left as a white secular party.

Did Someone Say Beer Blogging?

Here it is!

Sometime ago over at Blogger Beer I blogged beer. Particularly it was about brewing beer. I focused on the grains, mashing, and from fermenting to bottling. I left out mention of hops. I now mention hops.

Hops are the ingredient that give beer its distinctive bitterness. Hops were added as a preservative and over time have come to be an expected ingredient of beer. What is a hop? It is the flower bud of a hops plant which are vines. Almost every brewery tour I have been on makes mention of the fact the hops plant is related to the plant we harvest to make rope from (no, not the nylon plant). ;-) There are many variety of hops plants all having slightly different flavor characteristics.

Some hops are considered bittering hops and other are classified as finishing hops. The bittering hops are usually introduced to the wort (say it "wert" and it is the proto-beer) early in the boil and is present until the boil is over. They provide the bulk of the bittering and preservative effects. Finish hops are typically added in the very last minutes before the boil is over and their purpose is to add finer qualities to the hop flavor.

Now as many of you know different beers have different degrees of hopping. Some are "hoppy beers" and some are not so hoppy. Some beers have lots of hops but little bitterness and some have little hops but lots of bitterness. It all depends on the recipe, the heavier a beer is the more hops it can take without acquiring a bitter taste and the lighter the beer the less hops it takes to make the beer bitter.

My favorite style of beer is the Indian Pale Ale (aka IPA). IPAs were designed to be shipped from the UK to India and therefore were brewed with two preservative characteristics in mind. High in alcohol content and high in hoppiness. Both act to preserve the beer on their long voyage to India. IPAs are available in most brewpubs (from time to time) and usually you can find some IPA in the microbrew section of most liquor stores.

Stouts and other dark beers are (typically) heavily hopped but due to the nature of the beer there is little bitterness noticeable. What about Guinness? The distinct flavor of Guinness is derived from a touch of sour. They mix in a bit of soured brew to achieve Guinness's distinctive flavor.

Also, be careful to distinguish between stale beer and strong hopping (it was a mistake I frequently made before I began homebrewing). Most true imports I have drank have the same distinctive (unpleasant) flavor and that is the flavor of stale beer. Not that I know what wet straw tastes like but this is how I have seen the flavor characterized as. Almost all imports I have drank have that flavor to one extent or another. One of the worst for it is Grolsch (some "imports" are actually contract brewed here in the States so not all "imports" will have this flavor). Most San Miquel beer (from the Philippines) I drink has it as well. That is NOT hops and that is just stale beer (a can of Old Style I had this weekend had the flavor, Old Stale was more like it).

Re: Brewers Draft

Sports blogging is kosher, as is beer blogging. Nudity at the BBA is still strictly outlawed.

RE: Brewers Draft

E.S.K., you forget that we spent the majority of NFL Draft Day live-blogging the Packers pick.

I'm starting to consider that it's practically tradition. Jib, your thought?

Ryan Rote

Ryan Rote - Baseball -

Ryan Rote, from Brookfield now playing at Vandy, was just drafted by the Chicago White Sox.

The Milwaukee Brewers choose...

With the number 5 over all pick in the draft, the Brewers have chosen third baseman Ryan Braun of Miami.

I Knew It!

John Kerry is an undead zombie.

UPDATE - sorry, didn't realize that page requires registration. It's free, if you want to do it. Otherwise: it's a Boston Globe story about Kerry's and Bush's grades at Yale. Kerry was actually a worse student than Bush was, but the best part is the old college pics the Globe scared up.

Here's Bush:

And here's Kerry:

Makes you wonder how the guy managed to marry not one, but two rich heiresses, doesn't it?

UPDATE 2 - Kevin has already posted these at Lakeshore Laments. That must be where Instapundit got it.

WEA Trust-Dean Health Care collusion?

I'm not going to steal Owen's thunder on this, so I'm directing you to Boots & Sabers to read more. I am going to steal Charlie Sykes's copyrighted (and trademarked) line, though. It seems Owen has committed a flagrant act of journalism. Again.

Monday, June 06, 2005

Washington State & Wisconsin.

My technical problems are resolved!

The first decision in the case of Gregoire vs. Casey is in and it is a victory for Gregoire. From this point on it is going to be an even tougher uphill fight for Casey.

The key of the decision is simply the inability to distinguish between who the ineligible ballots were cast for. Now, partisans from both sides (this partisan is included) have their suspicions who the crooked ballots were cast for but the judge needs more than suspicions. One statement the judge made is very important.

The judge stated the voters are going to have to have to fix the situation by demanding more strict measures to protect the ballot in the first place. For a change, a judge decided not to create law on his own. Now, the Washington state legislature should look into demanding better
ballot security. James Doyle governor of Wisconsin should also take note:

I'm going to decline that invitation...the voters of this state are in the position to demand that remedial measures be implemented immediately...[It will take more than] constructing new buildings and hiring more staff...[There's] a culture of inertia, selfishness...not taking responsibility, refusing to be held accountable...It's the voters who should send the message.

The people of Wisconsin have twice asked Governor Doyle to take measures to protect the integrity of the ballot and twice he has refused to comply. In fact, there is much about our system here in Wisconsin wide open for abuse. The most obvious problematic area is the lack of having to prove one's identity at the polls. The next most is same day registration.

Same day registration is a major headache for poll workers and voters. During the 2000 general election I went to my poll and was grieved to see a long line and figured I would be there for an hour. Well, that line was for registration not for voting. When I discovered that, I was able to sail in and out very quickly. This is a selling point for same day registration? Not only do the voters have to wait but poll workers are pushed to do their work way too quickly and are probably not giving the applications the proper scrutiny. In addition once the application is filled out the benefit of the doubt is given to the voter and they are free to cast a ballot. Once that ballot is cast it is utterly beyond retrieving in case of fraud or voter ineligibility and a voter who has properly followed the laws has their vote cancelled. Now, sharp clerks of courts have caught and will continue to catch those who cheat at the polls but the damage is done. The goal is to stop the cheat before they do the damage.

Sigh, Governor Doyle refuses to take common sense steps to protect the ballot. The GOP controlled legislature listened to his criticisms of the previous bill and took steps to address those concerns but Governor Doyle refused to consider those steps adequate. As I have said before I
try to refrain from cynicism but the Governor can not supply any decent reasons to oppose voter id. Governor Doyle, listen to the people!

Sheboygan Press vs. Wal-Mart

Is it just me? Am I missing something important? Or am I simply numb to the troubles of my fellow man?

I ask, because I simply can't abide the headline to this Sheboygan-Press Editorial:

Health-care costs of large companies should not be shifted to taxpayers

The editorial is about Wal-Mart, and the recent report that a lot of Wal-Mart employees are also enrolled in Badger Care, the state's "work supplement" welfare program (read the editorial if you need details).

That mirrors this excerpt from an earlier MJS editorial (which I linked to last week) on the same subject: estimates that U.S. taxpayers pay $1.5 billion subsidizing Wal-Mart Medicaid costs, 15% of Wal-Mart's $10 billion in profits last year.

Now we are all for free enterprise, but some companies think this means a free ride on the people's dime.

I have a few questions for these writers:

My family spends money on food several times a month. Are these my employer's food costs?

We have car payments to make. We have to buy gas. Are these my employer's transportation costs?

We pay a mortgage and upkeep on a house. Are these my employer's housing costs?

One of my kids has braces. They're expensive. Is the monthly bill we pay part of my employer's orthodontic costs?

The Sheboygan Press might answer yes, and support that by supporting a higher state-mandated minimum wage. Don't know. I do know that, by shifting responsibility from individuals to the companies they work for, we move closer to a socialistic society in which we are less and less responsible for ourselves.

LapTop or DeskTop ???

In a sure sign that the era of mobile computing has arrived, notebooks have for the first time outsold desktops in the United States in a calendar month, the research firm Current Analysis says.

After tracking sales from a sampling of electronics retailers, Current Analysis says notebook sales accounted for 53 percent of the total personal computer market last month, up from 46 percent during the same period last year.

San Diego-based Current Analysis does not follow worldwide personal computer sales.
Spurring demand for notebooks is their overall price drop as quality has improved, says Sam Bhavnani, senior analyst for Current Analysis. "Just a few years ago, the performance of notebooks was nowhere near where it is today," he said.

Notebook prices fell 17 percent during the past year while desktop prices dipped only 4 percent. Some of the features common in most notebooks are longer-lasting batteries, CD burners and wireless capability.

Story Here

I admit, I have a laptop that I use at work. Because of this, I can bring my work home. I can only access my job through an extremely secure Point-to-Point tunnel via the Internet. I have a docking station at home and at work. When it comes to using laptops, there are a few things I really hate. I hate the keyboards. I hate the pads for mousing. I hate the ball between the "G and H". I hate not having a numeric keypad. I hate having to look where the "Delete" button is. I hate having to be aligned right in front of the screen. I hate when the battery runs out.
That being said, because I have docking stations at home and work, I can use my own keyboard and monitor and don't have to worry about those things. It also allows me freedom to work from home for a day or 1/2 day without commuting. It saves me a few gallons of gas. I also am afforded an opportunity not to have to drive with the Rush hour idiots.

What's your two cents?

The $25,000 Goof

That's the cost of the reprinting of ballots for the 'mistake' of the printing error on the Madison School Referendum.
We now know who was behind Madison's school district referendum ballot misprint and how much it cost.

The district announced Friday that an external bond counsel hired to handle the referendum sent the wrong version to the city clerk.

Then an e-mail exchange added to the confusion.

There were questions about which polling places would be open, and the clerk didn't catch that the e-mails were also addressing the wording of the two incorrect questions.

Board president Carol Carstensen said next time, the board needs to see the ballot before it goes to the printer and regrets the mistake ever happened.

"Of course I wish it didn't happen and whether it had an impact on voters, it's very difficult for me to say," said Carstensen. "My own feeling is people had made up their minds. For those people not happy with the board and going to vote no, this sort of confirmed them."

Superintendent Art Rainwater said he will evaluate the lawyers' performance, but won't issue disciplinary action.

The misprint cost $25,800.

Carstensen is checking to see if the lawyer who made the mistake will pick up the tab or if the district is stuck paying.
Here's an idea - stick the lawyer with the tab. For once don't force the taxpayer to pay for a public employee's mistake.

Sunday, June 05, 2005

A Preview of his DPW Speech?

Evan Bayh, Democratic Senator from Indiana, has long been seen by political watcher as a possible 2008 Candidate - he's young, attractive, and until recently; seen as moderate.

Drudge links to a story in the Indianapolis Star on Bayh's 30-minute speech at a Jefferson-Jackson Dinner last night.

While not declaring his candidacy for the Democratic nomination in 2008, Bayh certainly sounded like a man seeking the hearts of the party faithful as he took the stage Saturday evening.

In a speech that lasted more than 30 minutes, he rebuked President Bush's administration on a range of issues, from the federal deficit to the need for energy independence.

"When the history of our time is written," Bayh said, "I believe this president will be judged very harshly."

Bayh said Republicans have divided the country, and Bush failed to summon Americans to "something more" following the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. The president, he said, should have urged people to accept potentially costly moves to lessen the country's dependence on foreign oil.

Bayh said he would have made such a request "if I'd been president of the United States at that time."

Massive budget deficits threaten future generations, Bayh said, before accusing Bush of not doing enough to respond to the unfair trade actions of other nations.

"We need a government that will stand by our workers," he said, offering a message for unions, a key base of any national Democrat's candidacy. ". . . We need a government that will do something other than roll over and let them down."

Pointing to the Republican Party's symbol, Bayh joked, "The elephant always leads to some unpleasant stuff that you have to clean up."

Bayh will be the keynote speaker at this upcoming weekend's State Democratic Party Convention in Oshkosh. With Wisconsin's continued status as a swing-state ever more prevalent, his every word will be watched.

If you only read one column this weekend... mine! But if you read two, then read Paul Jacob's: "Taxation as a moral value."

The whole theme of "keeping religion out of politics" has bugged me for a long time, and Jacob takes that theme on.

An excerpt: is President Bush who finds himself regularly accused of mixing religion and politics. There are several reasons for this, his faith-based initiatives and his personal statement of faith ranking the highest. However, one rarely if ever witnessed him speaking from a church pulpit during the campaign (though he attends church regularly). Nor did he make a habit of explaining his political positions in terms of his religious views. On the other hand, Kerry was constantly before church congregations speaking of his faith and its intersection with his politics.

That's not the best part. Read the whole thing.

Remembering President Reagan

Today marks the one year anniversary of the passing of President Ronald Reagan. A man that was a political icon to many millions of people around the world, a man that worked tirelessly for freedom and believed totally in the goodness of America, her people and Democracy.

Please visit Trey Jackson's video tributes to this great man
Jackson's Junction: In Remembrance

Mister Politics has a wonderful video tribute here, the last minute or so is very moving.

I know there will be many tributes to Mr. Reagan today, I will read, watch and listen to many myself, but these few will give you somewhere to start.

Good bye Ronnie, I know you have touched the face of God as you have touched the hearts & lives of millions of us around the world.

cross posted at

Saturday, June 04, 2005

WISN Radio Gig

Did anyone audition today for the WISN radio thing? We're waiting for the blow by blow analysis...