Badger Blog Alliance

Sic Semper Tyrannis

Friday, September 30, 2005

Regina Bakala update

I have received and posted an update on Regina Bakala, the woman that fled torture in The Congo to live an honorable life in America, only to be ripped from the arms of her US Citizen children. Her crime, living the American Dream and buying a house with her family.

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Racine Concealed Carry Protest.

Meet Pete Karas. Pete is a member of the Green Party and an Alderman in Racine. Pete hosted a little wing-ding in Racine this afternoon protesting the proposed concealed carry legislation.

Alderman Karas got some free pub from a couple of puff pieces in the Racine Journal Times Web Forums , he was calling for a hundred people to show up in front of the Racine Court House.

Why there? State Senator Cathy Stepp has an office in the building. It was Alderman Karas' hope to convince her to vote no.

I was curious in Rep Lehman would show up. Seems wherever someone shows up with an anti-Stepp sign of late he is not far behind. He did not disappoint.

The crowd was about 70 strong. About a dozen of those were press, with a small group of 5 pro carry persons.

You are looking at the back of Robert Gutsche of the Racine Journal Times. I met Robert at the Cindy Sheehan protest, he covered the event and indicated to me he had hoped there were some anti-Cindy folks there. Robert interviewed the pro carry folks in this photo, I'll be curious to see how he covers them in the morning.

See the gentleman in wheel chair? His sign cracked me up!

How about a closeup?

All the usual suspects were in attendance. The event was quiet with a few "no more guns" chants.

I did find it odd that the two Greenies who showed up to set up the event both drove Japanese cars. I would not plan any protests in Kenosha, they take that seriously down there.

Cathy Stepp did not attend. I can't say as I blame her.

Update: Racine Journal Times story.

A Headline I'd Like To See

Thanks GBFan!

Had the following exchange with Mr. Sykes today:

Mr. Aurelius,

You call that begging? I'm afraid Spotted Horse set the bar much, much higher.



From: Marcus Aurelius
Sent: Thu 9/29/2005 1:12 PM
To: Charlie Sykes
Subject: [SPAM] Begging Seems To Work!

Mr. Sykes,

Have you read Blogger Beer? How about a blogroll entry? Please?


From: Marcus Aurelius
The Wise and Benevolent Emperor of the Blogosphere!

Visit Blogger Beer at

Maybe I can call it spamming instead! ROFLMAO!

10/4/2005 12:12 PM CDT.
Recieved this note yesterday from Charlie:
Welcome, your eminence. You are blog rolled.

Thanks much Charlie! BTW The Jawa Report blogrolled Blogger Beer yesterday as well. Thanks to all who have also blogrolled Blogger Beer, I do appreciate it.

Roberts Roll Call Hall of Shame

It's Zima time! [Well, Berghoff's time, here in Wisconsin]

The Washington Post reports that John G. Roberts was sworn in as Chief Justice today after receiving a 78 - 22 vote in the Senate. Here's the roll call of naysayers:
NO - 22 Democrats
Akaka, Hawaii
Bayh, Ind.
Biden, Del.
Cantwell, Wash.
Clinton, N.Y.
Corzine, N.J.
Durbin, Ill.
Feinstein, Calif.
Harkin, Iowa
Kennedy, Mass.
Kerry, Mass.
Lautenberg, N.J.
Obama, Ill.
Reed, R.I.
Reid, Nev.
Sarbanes, Md.
Stabenow, Mich.

Do you think they have their first drafts of press releases ready for tomorrow, should Bush announce a nominee to replace Rhenquist? The blogosphere is already circling the wagons.

Posts Blue, grousing about how many Dems approved Roberts and how few opportunities occur to install a Chief Justice: "Now you know why some people like me were a little upset at Democrats for not pressing Roberts harder to answer questions regarding existing civil rights laws." Billmon [who can be counted on to show up some time to call me an effing fascist] breaks his silence on Roberts, noting "the stealth coating on Roberts's judicial philosophy made it through his hearings with barely a scratch." Drudge is on record with a post titled "Red Meat for Yellow Dogs," which no longer appears on the site.

Nota Bene: These Senators - all Democrats - had no reason to vote Roberts down. Except that he was nominated by George W. Bush. The coming circus should be vicious, since the tigers haven't been fed.

Cross-posted @ GMC & NGC.

Tom Nelson Speaks.

My wife the Wise and Benevolent Empress of the Blogosphere received a letter from Tom Nelson today.

My wife works in what is essentially a nursing home and signed off on a petition to encourage our legislature to override Governor Doyle's veto of the 1.4% increase in MA reimbursement rates.

First off Mr. Nelson, my wife is Mrs. Aurelius to you, not Claudia. We are on a first name basis with our legislators and you are not one of them, please mind your manners.

A little quote from Mr. Nelson's letter:
Furthermore, passing our proposal will keep us from having to make further cuts to education and will protect the Governor's responsible property tax freeze.

A question for Mr. Nelson, is this how responsible modifies tax freeze in your version of English? HT: Owen @ Boots & Sabers.

Cloning ban goes to the Governor's desk

As Letterman says, "Please, no wagering", but anyone want to bet that "our fair Dem Gov", as tee bee put it won't sign it into law?

From a Pro-Life Wisconsin press release:
The Wisconsin State Senate voted today to place a complete ban on human cloning in the state. Assembly Bill (AB) 499 would ban both “reproductive cloning” – where a cloned person is brought to birth, and “therapeutic cloning” – where a cloned person is killed in the course of scientific experimentation. ...

On a 21 to 12 bipartisan vote, Assembly Bill 499, authored by Representative Steve Kestell (R-Elkhart Lake) and Senator Joe Leibham (R-Sheboygan), passed the Senate and now moves to the Governor’s desk.
"Bi-partisan" should be the key for the Governor that yes, he oughta sign this bill. And here's another hint: Michigan, Iowa, Indiana, Arkansas, North Dakota and South Dakota already have banned both reproductive and so-called "therapeutic" cloning.

But no, Doyle has already "vowed" to veto it.

When the UW-Madison researchers start wailing about not being able to find cures for diseases, quote them this:
A comprehensive ban on human cloning will not hinder lifesaving medical research in Wisconsin. Ethically unproblematic adult stem cells have helped hundreds of thousands of patients, and new clinical uses are discovered almost weekly. Adult stem cells have already been used to treat cancers, restore vision, repair damaged spinal cords, and treat juvenile diabetes and Parkinson’s disease.
Call the Governor at 608-266-1212 and ask him to sign this bill.

Wis Travel Bid: That's a lot of Snapple

In another titanic battle of "headline meets text," we get an interesting look into the government travel provider game.

The headline caught my eye, though the article's a bit stale: "Doyle got $10,000 from leader of agency with state contract," Sept. 2. Egads! Our fair Dem Governor has been caught with his hand in the cookie jar!

But wait. The article tells another story, about the bidding process and the timeline of the winning bidder's contributions to Doyle's campaign. The Gov did get a wad of cash, and it was cleverly eaked out until the contract was in the bag, but some nitty facts want to get in the way:
Larrivee said a selection committee made up of five members from the University of Wisconsin System and one member each from the Administration and Transportation departments heard oral presentations from the finalists. It came down to Adelman and Omega.

Adelman won after what Larrivee called an "apples-to-apples comparison" on costs and fees. Diane Bozicevich, vice president of Midwestern operations for Omega World Travel, said Adelman underbid them by $4 and won the contract. Omega told the state it would charge $28 per transaction; Adelman could do it for $24."

I would say it was clean," Bozicevich said.

Well, either we have five UW officials and two bureaucrats, along with the prime competitor, complicit in Adelman's bid to buy the contract to the tune of a ten grand split with Doyle, or we have some major mangling of facts. I'm pretty sure this bunch could have held out for more dinero.

What's at stake for the winner - and loser? "Larrivee estimated the state will purchase about 10,000 tickets a year through Adelman. With Adelman charging the state $24 per ticket, that equals out to about $240,000 annually."

So the real story here is whether the travel habits of government, bureaucracy and educators in the Cheese State should be trimmed back or some alternate deal made. We're talking a quarter of a mil here, in fees alone. That's a lot of Snapple.

cross-posted @ GMC.

Ronnie Earle and Vince Biskupic.

How many remember the 2002 State AG election?

Remember the Democrats filed that open records request and made a huge deal of the fact that Vince Biskupic came to pre-trial arrangements with certain defendants? That was a big deal that went on way beyond the Vince's failed election.

Read this Byron York article on the deals that Ronnie Earle. Here is an excerpt:
A grand jury in Travis County, Texas, last September indicted eight corporations in connection with the DeLay investigation. All were charged with making illegal contributions (Texas law forbids corporate giving to political campaigns). Since then, however, Earle has agreed to dismiss charges against four of the companies — retail giant Sears, the restaurant chain Cracker Barrel, the Internet company Questerra, and the collection company Diversified Collection Services — after the companies pledged to contribute to a program designed to publicize Earle's belief that corporate involvement in politics is harmful to American democracy.

I wonder if this will get any attention beyond National Review? It certainly casts doubt on Earle's intentions.

Carnival of the Badger

Carnival of the Bdager Version 7.0 is online.

Stop by, have a corn dog and some cotton candy.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005


Former UW QB Brooks Bollinger will start for the New York Jets this Sunday!

Now if only Peyton Manning would go down, and Jim Sorgi could start for the Colts. Have there ever been two former UW quarterbacks starting in the NFL at the same time?

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Havill over Olsen in Jefferson recall

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinal's Daywatch is reporting that Chris Havill has defeated David Olsen in the Jefferson recall election.

Results can be found here.

Carnival Reminder

Don't forget to get your carnival posts in.

Email your submissions to badgercarnival at gmail dot com or use the carnival submit form.

Don't make me pick them, if I do I will search public records and post your bare butt baby pictures.

September Straw Poll

Patrick Ruffini has this month's presidential straw poll up, and it's "tagable," by state and by topics, e.g. pro-life, libertarian, immigration, taxes.

You insert the tag, so whatever you think is important will be tracked. I entered fiscal conservative, pro-life, strict constructionist, WI.

Ruffini had already done the laudable job of putting together a "fantasy ballot," which you can select not to override your original vote. In the results, you can see how fantasy candidates pull votes from regular candidates.

Interesting preliminary results:

Fiscal conservatives picked Giuliani over Romny by a wide margin, but Giuliani takes second place by an equal margin to Rice in the fantasy ballot.

Pro-lifers like Allen, then Giuliani is second, with Rice and then Jeb Bush taking second in the fantasy ballots.

Hugh Hewitt fans like Giuliani, then Allen, and Rice is followed by Giuliani on the fantasy ballot.

Cross-posted at Guide to Midwestern Culture for greater breadth of polling results.

Monday, September 26, 2005

Statistically Insignificant

Some quick numbers for you all. If the AntiAmerica Protest in DC this weekend really did draw 100,000 people(which I don't believe based on the pictures I have seen but I will give them the 100K number for the sake of argument)the AntiAmerica crowd should be ashamed of themselves. The CIA lists the current population of the United States at 290,000,000 million and change. So 100,000 is .000344 of one percent of the total US population. My engineering and statistics friends have a phrase for this STATISTICALLY INSIGNIFICANT

The AntiAmerican crowd will say but hardly anyone showed up to the ProAmerica Rally but there are reasons for that A. we all have jobs of some sort we cant just run off for long weekends or a week if we don't like something. Plus the majority of the Moonbats who were in DC could be classified as Professional Protesters, as long as its an anti
America/Capitalism/Israel/or anything else that is good they will be there to protest. To a number of people on the left, the never ending protest is what has given them a reason to live since the Greatful Dead quit touring.

Like a number of people on the right have stated if this AntiAmerica protest was so mainstream why did almost every Liberal politician with something to lose avoided it like a Hippy avoids a shower.

In the end the no job crowd went on a trip(who pays for these losers to travel anyway)they made some noise but never forget .000344 of one percent is


Can we question their patriotism yet?


Orignially posted at SH

Badger, Badger

Colossus reminds me, over at the Guide, that the Badger has a favorite song. Enjoy!

Cross-posted for extended psychotropic effect at Guide to Midwestern Culture.

Freedom of Expression

The Janesville Gazette reports that 35 people turned out Saturday for an anti-war protest to coincide with other anti-war protests, including this one. The protestors walked from the Basics store just off of Milton Ave. to the Post Office, mailed some letters to lawmakers, the gas company and MasterCard, then walked back to Basics and picked up some granola and organic coffee.

Highlights from the march, all of which required context from the writer (not that it helped much):
"There's not the same activism as there was before, and I think there needs to be more of that," said UW-Milwaukee student and Janesville native Lisa Murray.

Reporter Frank Schulz helps out, noting "The protests did not reach the level of discontent during the height of the Vietnam War, and some marchers said that's too bad."

"I think it has to do with money and oil and greed, and he wants to expand America's power," she said, which was framed by Schulz for readers: "Like many in the march, Murray faulted President Bush for the war and questioned Bush's motives."

Lew Mittness, a former member of the state Assembly from Janesville, railed against the president. He called the marchers patriots who were trying "to save the country from the kind of fascism that is being forced down our throats."

"Why should I support George Bush when he lied? He didn't listen. He was told what was going to happen, and it has happened," Mittness said.

Which would be..... what, exactly, Mr. Mittness? That Iraq is free from the tyranny of Saddam Hussein's death squads, and are able to vote in actual democratic elections? And how would America's power be expanded by creating an independent democracy, Ms. Murray?

The honks and calls of support from passing motorists appeared to outnumber the occasional negative comment.

A young man shouted "Go Bush!" from a car, which raised the ire of Karen Zierath of Janesville.

"Go serve in the Army if you're so for him," Zierath called out. "Go ahead. Serve in the Army. Sign up!"

I like the chickenhawk logic. It would help if everyone who supported the GWOT went abroad to fight; it would help the Dems win some elections, since there'd be few left to run against them here. We already know what would happen to their absentee ballots. Then the Dems would probably want to prolong the war, since things would change if all the war supporters came home.

Ah, freedom of expression.

1st Congressional District Candidate Sowa speaks.

If anyone is curious 1st Congressional District Democratic candidate Justin Sowa is starting to define himself.

In response to how to pay for hurricane relief candidate Sowa has come up with two, as he calls them, "common sense plans" to rebuild the gulf region.

1. Turn over control of Iraq to the UN, and pull our troops out. This should have happened a long time ago, but we now have a desperate need for both our soldiers and the monies being spent in Iraq here at home.

2. No one likes to here it, but, roll back the tax cuts to pre-2000 levels. President Bush pushed through Congress several tax cuts for the wealthiest 1% totaling in the trillions of dollars over 10 years. It is now time to ask those people with the most to sacrifice a little to help the people of the Gulf Coast.

Just a hint Mr. Sowa, if you want to be Congressman you may want to proofread before publishing. No one wants to hear it, not here it. I am no great grammar smith but then again I am not running for anything.

So Candidate Sowa wants a complete immediate withdrawal from Iraq and to turn over everything to that virtue of honesty and integrity the UN? For cryin' out loud even Russ Feingold thinks we should stay until the end of 2006, with possible extensions beyond that.

Additionally, this would seem to be a complete removal of the Bush tax cuts that have fueled our economic growth. That would be the absolute worst thing to do at this time. I guess the concept of spending cuts (excluding military of course) seem to escape the grasp of Mr. Sowa.

Mr. Sowa also answered an email in a post as to his qualifications to hold office. I have sent the candidate at least six very polite emails and left one voicemail asking for his work history, all went unanswered. He answered in a general scope on his weblog. You can view the whole response here.

I found it interesting that the candidate could not answer that question without attacking his opponent, Paul Ryan. He wrote:

Since becoming a Member of the House, my opponent has gained experience I do not have. I will freely admit that. For example, I do not have experience in voting for tax cuts for the rich while budget deficits are at record levels. I do not have experience in voting in favor of trade agreements that unfairly hurt American workers (CAFTA). I have not voted to end environmental regulations to ease the restraints on large corporations to log in OUR National forests. I have no experience in voting to allow anyone, including those without disaster training, to become head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency. And I really have no experience in destroying the single most successful social program in U.S. history, Social Security.

No, Mr. X, I do not have my opponent's experience. However, given his experience, many people, including myself, would rather have someone with NO experience.

In actually answering the question Candidate Sowa said this:

I have a degree in political science from Louisiana State University, specializing in Russian politics and American campaigning. I wrote my thesis on the role of the KGB in the fall of the Soviet Union. Since graduating, I have worked in international business, helping companies compete in a global manufacturing environment, while keeping as much of their manufacturing in their plant as possible.

According to a Journal Sentinel story Sowa works for an Elm Grove firm that helps US firms do business in China. The firm is apparently owned by his Father and three Uncles.

I'm curious as to why Mr. Sowa would not disclose any of that when asked, and if he ever had to do a serious job interview for a position outside the family business.

We have a Democratic candidate who majored in Russian Politics and American Campaigning who wrote a thesis, that I would love to read by the way, on the role of the KGB in the fall of the Soviet Union, who since graduating has been working to help companies do business with Communist China. Nope, I can see no reason why he would not want any of that to get out. However, a casual observation would seem to indicate Mr. Sowa is just a tad obsessed with Communism.

As usual Candidate Sowa seems to want to tell us why we should not vote for his opponent rather than why we should vote for him. I will give him credit for laying out actual positions on some issues though.

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Wow Wow Wow

WIS 23 Michigan 20

Varsity Varsity U Rah Rah Wisconsin,

Praise To Thy We Sing,

Praise to Thy Our Alma mater

U Rah Rah Wisconsin

On Wisconsin

Gooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo Red

Time to go get Drunk


Wal-Mart and small town politics

Wal-Mart had been in discussions with the city of Jefferson (Pop. 7,500) to build a Supercenter on the edge of town. All the city had to do was annex the piece of land and the plans would have moved forward. The city council, by a 5-3 vote, rejected the annexation, though, for some of the standard anti-Wal-Mart reasons. There was a popular outcry against the council's decision, and a second vote was held. Two city council members changed their minds, and this time the vote was 5-3 in favor of annexation, but it did not pass because it required 6 votes in the affirmative.

Two elderly women in Jefferson have lead the charge against the city council. Unhappy with the three council members, they started a recall effort against the only one who could legally be recalled-local funeral home owner David Olsen. On Tuesday, that recall vote will be held. Being a small town, though, the politics are personal:
He said he's especially hurt that the recall was led by two elderly sisters Charlotte Goers-Nevin and Cheryl Higgins.

"I buried their mother, and they're friends of mine," he said.

Word of advice to Mr. Olsen. It wasn't personal, it was politics. Sometimes citizens bite back when you make unpopular decisions.

Random10 puts me to shame with this great coverage of a story from my own back yard. His post makes me comfortable to say what I originally thought about Olsen's quote-it was cheap emotional politics.

Fall Fashion

The first hint of fall is upon us with maple and birch leaves beginning their coppery turn.

As the temperatures begin to drop we all must begin to think about our sweater drawers and what they hold for us in the way of seasonal fashion.

Here is a look at what one of our neighbors dug up:

Cross-posted at Guide to Midwestern Culture.

A fun drinking game for a Badger Saturday

In honor of the Wisconsin/Michigan(spit)game I have invented a new drinking game. One problem it can only be played today if you wait you will miss your chance. Ok here we go.

Rules you must keep a TV turned to CNN or MSNBC all day and every time they inflate the number of marchers at todays AntiAmerica opps I mean Anti War protest in Washington DC today you have to drink. Under normal circumstance we would all be passed out and dead drunk by Wis/Mich kick off but since the networks would be all Rita all the time we shouldn't lose anyone to alcohol poisoning. At least one good thing will come out of that storm.

According to LGF the Moonbats at DU are even mad that Rita is taking the spotlight from their little hate America fest.

So in fine drinking game tradition of "HI BOB" lets get those bottles open.



Friday, September 23, 2005

Watching Army vs. Iowa St.

Two questions: who taught Army how to tackle, and can the Packers hire him?

Channeling Cheese in Texas

That's what Grandpa Steve says, anyway.

On the front page of the Wisconsin State Journal today is a photograph entitled, "Hurricane Rita, The Predictions are Dire." This picture is of a lady in a long check out line in a Pasadena, Texas, convenience store, her arms full of food and drinks. Behind her in that long line are fellow customers also burdened with articles to purchase. The difference is, however, that all the others are loaded down with beer. Those wacky Texans. No wonder we love Owen, Jed, and Wendy of Boots & Sabers so much!

Yeah, he's a suckup. Whaddayagonnado.

Chipping Away With a Vote a Day

By now you've probably heard that Hillary Clinton won't vote for Roberts. She says:
Since I expect Judge Roberts to be confirmed, I hope that my concerns are unfounded and that he will be the kind of judge he said he would be during his confirmation hearing. If so, I will be the first to acknowledge it. However, because I think he is far more likely to vote the views he expressed in his legal writings, I cannot give my consent to his confirmation and will, therefore, vote against his confirmation. My desire to maintain the already fragile Supreme Court majority for civil rights, voting rights and women’s rights outweigh the respect I have for Judge Roberts’s intellect, character, and legal skills.

Basically, Hillary is only voting against Roberts because he's shown discretion in his responses that don't reveal him to be left-leaning, which is what she requires to confirm a judicial nominee.

Now Evan Bayh (D-Ind.) has hopped on Reid's rickety wagon.
I cannot (conclude he'll be a great justice) because so much essential to reaching a considered judgment about this nominee remains unknown,” Bayh said in a statement. “And that is not enough for a lifetime appointment to our nation’s highest court, a court from which there is no appeal, a court that is the ultimate arbiter of our most basic rights and freedoms.
Bayh has no reason to vote otherwise, either. None of the reasons given have anything to do with Roberts' record in any explicable, judicially meaningful way. Even Hillary refuses to do anything more than apply the broad brush to "the views he expressed in his legal writings."

But why are the Senators deliberating in the wake of yesterday's vote, especially when the hearings have been complete for a week, and Reid has already sounded the battle cry? And why would reporters poll one Senator at a time?

It's an old tactic - one the terrorists understand well - that when you don't outnumber your enemy, you wear them down. And it won't work in the end.

On Life and Liberty

There are some pretty bright eyes in our society who would argue that the blind pursuit of liberty, for liberties sake, is not what The Founders had in mind. That in fact, within the realm of liberty there must be walls. The argument then goes that modern liberalism with all of its nonsense is nothing more than an outgrowth of classical liberalism. That the pursuit of “liberty” knows not such cranial differentiations - I could not disagree more. What these astute observers are missing, completely, is economic philosophy - the basis for individual freedom and liberty here on earth in a world of profit and matter. To be free of tyranny is clearly what The Founders meant and to confuse matters with ideas regarding the shortcomings of the Enlightenment philosophers is foolhardy. Some who forward such thought I happen to agree with on many other matters, but it is always amazing the parochial nature of their analysis which seems to totally ignore the virtue of capitalism in the mix.

Consequently, you end up with ideas such as the “right to life” somehow being construed as an absolute upon which The Constitution is based. It is not, and could never be and I believe The Founders understood this implicitly. Clearly, there are many situations in life where my “right to life” conflicts with another’s “right to life.” So, if a right conflicts, can it be a “basic right”? I say no in the context of natural rights theory. This is not to say that I, personally, do not find abortion abhorrent, I do. Patrick Henry would not sign onto early drafts of The Constitution because it did not include what Virginia had - a bill of rights. Last time I checked, the bill of rights contained the 5th Amendment which clearly allows for the elimination of the life of another human being. If on the one hand we have an unbridled, unassailable, right to life premise in The Constitution, how then can we have such an internal conflict within the document itself?

Just as there is no right to an abortion in The Constitution, the Bill of Rights, or the other amendments, nor is there a definition of what constitutes “life” as so eloquently quoted by choosinglife. For if “life” is as sacred as some would argue then you have a conflict with the document itself. The answer to this seemingly impossible puzzle lies in the fact that the Founders spoke in the language of natural rights. The Declaration didn’t list Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness with specific definitions of each, rather it was language specifically intended to motivate to action those to whom the document applied – it is rhetorical. Just as one cannot lay claim to absolute liberty (which is anarchy), nor can one lay claim to an absolute in life – life is inherently short and dangerous and those who believe otherwise are the very same gang of looters who will stop at nothing to make each and every one of us subservient to the “greater good.” And that is the nexus between traditions of tyranny and modern liberalism - classical liberalism is the antithesis of both.

The Framers and Founders knew this far better than any of us because they lived under tyranny! So, where does this leave us? Well, in my view it leaves us with a “democracy if we can keep it.” Point being (and clearly assumed by The Founders) that if we do not come to the American table with morality and decency, then we do not deserve freedom and liberty – it’s as simple as that, but we cannot make the mistake of relying on the founding documents of this country to force either religion or a parochial definition of liberty (to which a right to an abortion is found) onto all of us. The Founders and Framers of this country were indeed men of the Enlightenment and natural rights were their stock in trade. Their vision was correct in my view, and we have strayed far afield from it.

Although The Declaration specifically mentions “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” that phrase is superseded by the words “that among these (self-evident truths),” which makes me wonder what other self-evident truths were foremost in the mind of Jefferson… Could it be a presumption that virtually all people would understand that the freedoms and liberty to which these brilliant men espoused were premised on morality and virtue? I suspect so, and where did they get theirs? That’s easy, primarily from The Bible, but they were careful not to exclude the possibility that one can be moral and virtuous without being an evangelical Christian… Many of them left the European continent specifically to escape religious tyranny – Thomas Paine comes readily to mind.

As a consequence and through my own understanding, I oppose Roe v. Wade on fact that nowhere in The Constitution do you find a right to an abortion – to argue that is pure and utter nonsense in my view - it is purely a matter reserved for either the State or, the individual, as proscribed by the 10th Amendment. For me, it is purely a matter between an individual and his creator it is not a codified standard within our founding documents. Perhaps it would be convenient were that the case, but then having had the Declaration of Independence filled with qualifiers and restrictions would have rendered it a nonstarter from the get go.

Fundamentally, we are equal as “persons”. In fact, I believe “all men are created equal” actually has meaning in the context of natural rights and should have been stated as such because as humans we are clearly individuate – we all bring different levels of ability, physical and mental, to the table so clearly we are not equal as human beings – but as persons, absolutely. So, in the end, it is this definition of person-hood which has to be understood. Neither The Constitution, nor any of the Founding documents provide that for us, nor should they. It is up to us to rise to the occasion of freedom and liberty, to constrain ourselves and to live understanding that, as Ronald Reagan so precisely stated, “Freedom is a fragile thing and is never more than one generation away from extinction. It is not ours by inheritance; it must be fought for and defended constantly by each generation, for it comes only once to a people. Those who have known freedom, and then lost it, have never known it again.” That is the spirit our Founders relied upon, it is also, not surprisingly, the same sort of thinking that pervades the works of Mises, Bastiat, Locke, Rand, Patterson, et al. There is a common thread; it is one worth finding…

bildanielson @ OnTheBorderLine

No nekkid blogging

Folkbum's Rambles & Rants wins Mkeonline's Semi-final round 2. Your esteemed BBA bloggers must remain clothed. Perhaps this was a strategy error on my part. Maybe if I had threatened to allow nudity, the result would have been different. Drat! Congrats to Folkbum.

MJS keeps showing its anti Walker bias

Once again the MJS has a story how Scott Walker is as evil and treats the citizens of Milwaukee county like an Overlord.

So what crime against humanity is Darth Walker guilty of this time? He is proposing that the weekly discounted bus fare price rise from $13 to the back crushing price of $16. This works out to $156 dollars a year. County Executive Walker is raising the rates for two reasons that the paper does mention,

1.Fuel cost have risen dramatically
2.He must maintain his insane pledge to not raise property taxes.(I may have added the word insane)

But later this summer, the picture changed dramatically as Walker struggled to balance the perennially tight county budget and maintain his pledge to freeze taxes. Also, transit officials were rocked by skyrocketing gas prices that added another $1 million to their projected fuel needs.

The MJS reporter Dave Umhoefer does mention in the above quote that the county budget is, how did he put it "perennially tight county budget" but go read the whole article and gee once again the MJS never says why the county budget is perennially tight.

This is what gets me upset the MJS has decided they cannot live with Scott Walker as Governor so they are carrying Gov Jim Doyle's water by attacking Walker every chance they get. But they always chose to attack Scott for sticking to his property tax freeze but act like the Tom Amiet county board pension smash and grab never happen. If the county board had not given away the store maybe Milwaukee county wouldn't have these budget problem. Wouldn't it be nice in these stories about the tight budget if they actually mentioned why the budget is tight. No they cannot do that, they have to blame it all on Scott Walker and his evil hold the line on property tax pledge.

It is a shame that the MJS believes it has to be a partisan shill for Jim Doyle instead of trying to tell the news. Scott Walker was not the one who let the looters into the county vault and it seems to me the voters of Milwaukee county knew how he would attack these budget problems when they reelected him.


Thursday, September 22, 2005

WTMJ Website changes

A great new look to the WTMJ website. I love the new look of Charlie Sykes' Blog! Check it out. Newsradio 620 WTMJ: Charlie Sykes

By the way, all of the WTMJ pages now have new URL's so I suggest starting at the main page

Hurrican Katrina Relief: Pull the Good Stuff Out of Your Closet

Here's a good and simple opportunity to help out victims of Hurricane Katrina:
The Blackhawk Technical College Student Government Association (SGA) will be hosting an All-Campus Clothing and Goods Drive in cooperation with Mansur Trucking Inc. of Janesville, Wisconsin to support victims of the Hurricane Katrina disaster in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama.

The drive will take place Tuesday, September 27 and Wednesday, September 28. Two windows of time will be available on both days for students or staff to drop off items during: one from 7:30 AM – 9:30 AM and another from 2:00 PM – 4:00 PM. Having two drop-off time slots each day allows students with classes both in the morning and afternoon to drop off items. This flexibility also allows staff members to drop off goods before or after work shifts.

Items may be dropped off at a designated auto bay near the back of the central campus building (Room 1122). Signs will be posted throughout the campus directing both car and foot traffic to the drop point. After the drive is completed, Mansur Trucking Inc. will assist in the disbursement of items collected in the drive to the communities affected by this disaster.

If you have any further questions about this drive please contact me. Please pass this information unto students. Thank you!

Jason Wiedenhoeft
Student Activities
Blackhawk Technical College
Janesville, WI 53546
Phone: (608) 757-7702

Cross-posted at Guide to Midwestern Culture.

Carnival of the Badger 6

As you may have gathered from 's post below, Carnival of the Badger 6 is up over at Public Brewery, and he's really done a good job of it.

No, seriously, the liberal blogger did a good job. Go read it.

Good news on porkbusting?

The Heritage Foundation sent out an email with this news:
[On Monday], members of the House's Republican Study Committee (RSC) matched Pelosi and offered up all earmarked projects as part of an RSC spending proposal that contains hundreds of billion in cuts.
It's scary that the first Represenative to commit to cuts was Nancy Pelosi.

But if the Republicans are serious about cuts, whether they're first or second to the party, I'm happy. Click here for the Adobe file of the proposed cuts from the RSC.

UPDATE: I corrected my error from before; Nancy Pelosi is a member of the House, not a Senator. Thanks to the commenter below for pointing that out, and sorry for the mental lapse!

Will the Moonbats forgive Russ?

If the reports that Cut and Run Russ is going to vote Yes on Judge Roberts today are true, what will that do to Senator Feingolds hopes of being the darling of the Moonbat left. I mean that is where the money is in the Democratic party, I am very surprised he is willing to offend the Move on and DU types by actually doing the right thing and voting for Judge Roberts.

Makes you wonder what they have planned for whom ever is chosen to replace Justice O'Connor. My guess he figures he can get the their love back be voting their way in that fight.


Carnival Time.

Step right up step right up and submit for next weeks Carnival of the Badger.

Guess your topic and win a free prize, no not on the top shelf, yes on this lower shelf, that one to the left of the Chicklets and the right of the giant combs...

Email your entries here.

Some common sense from a 'Sconnie Senator?

Looks like Sen. Kohl is a yes on Roberts.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Can someone explain something to me please.

How is it the Local BP here in lovely Oconomowoc can raise its gas prices 21 cents from $2.68 to $2.89. I understand they will say it is because of Rita, but I find it hard to believe that the gas supply system from Texas to Wisconsin works that fast. The storm has not even hit Texas yet. I am the biggest capitalist you will find but I smell a rat. Come on after Katrina they drove the prices up above $3 and then with in 2 weeks it fell below prestorm prices. Now they are doing it again. Is this the local gas station owner gouging or the Oil companies or both. This is crazy today they were talking about how Oil supplies are up and demand is down.

So one of you people out there who are smarter than me please explain this so even an unfrozen caveman can understand it.


Update on this story. I noticed today the station is down to 2.79 since every other station in town stayed at 2.68 I still think someone may have been trying to make an extra buck on the storm hype but what do I know right.

Nelson to Challenge Kind

This news only speeds up my belief that we need a BBA member in the state's 3rd Congressional District (La Crosse / Eau Claire) to cover this race next year.

A northwestern Wisconsin realtor says he will challenge Democratic U.S. Rep. Ron Kind in 2006 for his seat in the 3rd Congressional District.

Paul Nelson, a 39-year-old Republican from Woodville, told The Associated Press Wednesday he wants to protect people's property rights.

Nelson, who works as a real estate agent in Hudson, said he was motivated to run after a U.S. Supreme Court ruling in June allowed a city to seize private property for economic development under a policy known as eminent domain.

"Historically, governments that fail to recognize property rights soon fail in the recognition of human rights," Nelson said. "If Americans can't be secure in their property rights, our democracy starts to crumble."

He called activist judges "the single greatest threat" to American democracy.

Nelson said he has little political experience beyond serving on the board for the Christian school his children attended in Baldwin.

He served in the Marine Corps from 1984 to 1988 and was stationed at Camp Pendleton in California, he said. He believes the United States needs to keep troops in Iraq until a functioning democracy emerges.

"As a former military man, I appreciate a military solution. I also appreciate the fact that military solutions don't always resolve themselves immediately. We still have bases in Germany. We still have bases in Japan."

He said Kind has done nothing of note in five terms in Congress.

Kind spokeswoman Stephanie Lundberg countered that this year alone Kind has authored a dozen bills, including legislation that would set up a check-off on federal tax forms for Hurricane Katrina relief and a health care plan for small businesses and farmers.

Kind currently serves on the Budget Committee, which crafts the federal budget; the Resources Committee, which addresses environmental and conservation issues; and the Education and the Workforce Committee, Lundberg said. He also is a chief deputy whip in the House.

"U.S. Rep. Kind is focused on serving his constituents of the Third Congressional District," Lundberg said.

The 3rd Congressional District encompasses much of western Wisconsin, including Richland, Buffalo, La Crosse, Eau Claire and St. Croix counties.
I'll agree that Kind hasn't done anything of any real substance in his decade in Congress, but I think Nelson's a long shot to win.

While focusing on Kelo is a wonderful idea to campaign on, I think what will make it difficult is the facts of Nelson being a political novice and the 3rd District's a lot more Democratic-leaning than it use to be thanks to redistricting and simple ignorance by the State GOP. (Nearly all of the State Senators in the 3rd are Republican, but they can't seem to find a good candidate. Explain?)

That being said; I doubt he could do much worse than Kind's last opponent - Senate Majority Leader Dale Schultz - who ran one of the worst Congressional campaigns in state history.

Carnival of the Badger!

Don't forget, guys: Carnival of the Badger is being hosted by Public Brewery this week. Get those submissions in!

Use the Carnival Submit Form, or email to

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Nothing Says "We're Thinking it Over..."

...Like being holed up in Partisan Caucus all day.

There's still no vote on the Medicaid-related vetoes. It's moments like this, after a certain time frame, that you consider taking away the food and then the oxygen if this type of stalling continues.

And I sincerely mean that for both sides of the aisle.

UPDATE 6:30 PM - Debate is on and the first override vote failed by 2 votes. I'm gonna take a gamble and say the others will fail too by similar margins.

Going to have one worried big sister who works at a Nursing Home in Sheboygan after tonight.

Pork: Good or bad?

Jib has an useful perspective on pork, which is that my "pork" is your "necessary project".

He's right that we all have to trim the pork from our own plates. See this post for an example of how not to always have your hand out for so-called "government money". For one thing, always remember that there is no such thing as government money; it's our money, that we worked hard for, that the government takes every year to redistribute as it sees fit.

Some of it's good (locally, things like parks and schools) and nationally (highways and defense), but a lot of it is wasted, partly because the money is being spent by people other than those who earned it. It's always easier to spend someone else's money. Almost by definition, any money sent back to the states by the feds is going to have a certain level of pork in it.

In this post I encouraged all of us to contact our elected officials. Here's what I've done so far:

  • I contacted Rep. Sensenbrenner asking him to become the first congressman to sign on to the "Commit to Cuts" effort of N.Z. Bear and Glenn Reynolds.
  • I talked with the mayor of New Berlin and learned we don't get much federal money (which would be channeled through the state and county), which is good.
  • Also learned from the Mayor that our new library was built entirely with city funds (a bond was taken out), and that a local "Friends of the Library" group is having fund raisers to try to pay back the city for the entire cost (which would be amazing, as it was $9 million). That is what I love to hear.
  • Talked to the New Berlin police officer in charge of D.A.R.E. and learned that they get almost zero tax dollars and have to do fund raisers to get the money they need. Good. I would hate to see any of my tax dollars wasted on D.A.R.E... but that's another post.

  • This little exercise in citizenship has been interesting, partly because I've actually gotten some good news from my local officials. But I haven't yet talked to county or state reps, nor heard back from Rep. Sensenbrenner yet.

    Who have you contacted so far?

    Cindy Goes to Washington

    You've noticed that for the past few days I've been going gung-ho on Cindy Sheehan bashing. That's because she and her communist, anti-war allies are headed to Washington, D.C. this weekend to complain about all that's bad about America. Her "occupied New Orleans" quip set me off. This is a woman so in need of attention she's using the tragic death of her son. When she combines it with conspiratorial anti-American thinking it's truly shameful. There will be pro-troops counter rallies this weekend. If I could I'd go and bring as many people as I could. If you have the urge to support the troops and fight the wacked-out Leftism of Sheehan and her ilk goes to the rally web page where it's possible to arrange transportation to Washington. And for a slew of Sheehan posts visit a special section of

    Expect More Cheese

    But not the government kind. The jobless rate in Wisconsin is dropping:

    "Wisconsin's labor market continues to improve and our economy continues to grow stronger," Workforce Development Secretary Roberta Gassman said in a written statement. "The good news is, Wisconsin exports are growing at a faster pace than national exports, and that means jobs for Wisconsin's working families."

    What, you say, how can there be good news in this horrible economy? Of course the report notes that unemployment numbers were better in April and have risen from last year overall. There's a reason for this. "Officials say that may be a reflection of the difficulty some employers are experiencing in finding workers," the AP article notes.

    Since this is lengthy, interested readers may find the extended post about this and the significant problems found by UW-run Center on Wisconsin Strategy that imply race "inequality" and wider poverty for Wisconsoners at Guide to Midwestern Culture's "Expect More Cheese."

    Who Wants to Get the Owen-Baiting Started?

    The only question remaining from last night's Redskins/Cowboys game on MNF is: where was the swearing louder, in the Owen/Wendy household, or in the personal box of He-Who-Fired-Tom-Landry?

    UPDATE - Owen is, I should mention, a Cowboys fan.

    Monday, September 19, 2005

    The State of the Economy.

    Is good, at least from the perspective most people use to judge the economy.

    I spent a fair amount of time hitting various websites and found quite a few jobs out there. These jobs are not just "jo-jobs". I have not seen this amount of jobs out there for a while now.

    Anyone who says this economy is poor is spinning.

    Pork: It's mostly good

    It looks like the line out of Washington is going to be that most spending listed as pork by some groups is actually good spending. Kevin points out that Rep. Petri makes that point in a press release over at I'd also like to point out this comment made from my earlier post on 2005 Wisconsin Pork:
    I reviewed that list - at least 90% of it is legitimate spending.
    It was an annonymous comment from a U.S. House of Representatives IP address.

    This list is what it is. Check it and you decide what is and is not pork. I stand by my point, though. What is my succulent dinner is someone else's pork. And vice versa. You can't fight unnecessary Federal spending unless you are as critical of what's on your plate as you are of what's on the other guy's.

    Numbers Weren't (Aren't?) In His Favor

    This move seems to show that a veto override of Doyle wasn't just likely - it was eminent.

    In an apparent move to avoid having some of his health care vetoes overridden tomorrow, Gov. Jim Doyle's administration today ordered a four-month delay in cuts to fees paid to Wisconsin pharmacists who participate in the state's Medicaid program.

    State Administration Secretary Marc Marotta ordered that cuts in reimbursement rates for pharmacists be delayed from Oct. 1 until Feb. 1, 2006.

    Marotta in a letter said that the delay would allow the governor and legislators to consider recommendations of the new Governor's Pharmacy Reimbursement Commission, which was appointed to study the issue of how pharmacists are paid for dispensings drugs needed by Medicaid, SeniorCare and BadgerCare participants.

    Politically, the order by Doyle's top aide pushes the cuts off until early next year, after new tax collections estimates are made in January - estimates that may show state government can afford higher reimbursement rates for pharmacists.

    As a result of Doyle's vetoes of the budget passed by Republicans, who control the Legislature, Wisconsin pharmacists would have been paid $13.14 million less in state tax dollars to dispense drugs needed by the elderly, poor and disabled. Some pharmacists have said they would stop filling Medicaid prescriptions unless the Legislature overrode Doyle's vetoes.

    The Assembly is scheduled Tuesday to try and override two Doyle vetoes regarding reimbursements for pharmacists and two other vetoes, which cut nursing home reimbursements by $15.2 million and hospitals reimbursements for outpatient services by $5 million.

    Creating a commission to make Medicaid reforms is simply a last-minute attempt to say, "Don't override me, let's do this," said Tom Engels, spokesman for the Pharmacy Society of Wisconsin. "That's the only message this is sending."

    Engels said that pharmacists don't believe the state's actions today will provide a solution to low reimbursement rates, which would drop in February after the delay.

    This action, added to letter of State Senator Bob Jauch (D-Poplar) to his fellow senators, show that the numbers weren't in Doyle's favor. This delay only proves that enough State Dems weren't willing to bet on Diamond Jim in the "Their Governor vs Grandma" debate.

    Jauch is a Whip in the Democratic Senatorial Caucus I've been told by some. If he's worried, then Doyle's really worried. This "commission" proves Doyle's worried he's just made the first Gubernatorial override in Wisconsin in twenty years a reality.

    The State GOP should go right full speed ahead with the override vote tomorrow.

    Ahoy, ye mateys, arrr

    As anyone who has spent five minutes on the Internet today knows, today is International Talk Like a Pirate Day.

    Because, you know, we've got way too much time on our hands around here. Arrr.

    Anyhoo, I think we need to expand on that theme, and I can't think of a better place to do that than here at BBA. So...with no further ado, I give you:

    International Talk Like a Yooper Day, eh

    You might wanna quick go buy some Hallmark stock. This is gonna be huge.

    Are Our Elections Really So Nasty?

    From Jim Geraghty's article on the German elections:

    A Green-party poster depicted Merkel with a "W" crown, waving American flags, and with a McDonald's pin; a cartoon dog was relieving himself on her poster. An "independent" anti-Christian Democrat site depicted Angela Merkel in a Monica Lewinsky pose, with a cigar-smoking President Bush.

    Russ Feingold's Failed Anti-war Rhetoric

    The Janesville Gazette joins the discussion we've been having at BBA regarding Russ Feingold throwing his gauntlet into the ring:

    Feingold's war stance may be battle plan for 2008

    U.S. Sen. Russ Feingold's proposal to withdraw U.S. troops from Iraq by the end of 2006 met with two reactions within his own party. One is acclaim; the other is a polite-but-cold shoulder. In either case, his stand has obvious implications for his possible dark horse run for the Democratic nomination in 2008.

    After tossing this around a week ago last Saturday with Lance and Jib, thanks to an AP article, I decided to give readers a peek at Russ's record.

    This all spun out of the AP's attempt to make something of Feingold's grandstanding on an exit date from Iraq. Unfortunately, the best they could do was to liken him to Howard Dean or Eugene McCarthy, both men of questionable political staying power. Like the two candidates, the "exit date" demand isn't really gaining traction either.

    Given the number of military families in Wisconsin, and the number of sons and daughters who have proudly given their lives to the cause of the Iraq war and its role in the GWOT, the Gazette is right to give this story time to develop, and Russ's colleagues are right to eschew pinning their political aspirations on this issue.

    Cross-posted at Guide to Midwestern Culture.

    Sunday, September 18, 2005

    The Chai Vang case, in a nut shell

    I've been disappointed in comments that I've read about this case at Althouse, Fark, and even at Jiblog. A lot of people apparently feel like spitting on the graves of the unarmed dead and want to excuse Vang's actions. I replied to a comment on Jiblog, but no where near as eloquently as Sanna Central does:
    Why didn't Vang just go?

    My North Woods training says if you are confronted with a shooter, run, get as many trees between yourself and the shooter, and go in a zig-zag pattern if conditions permit. It is more dangerous to take the time to crouch, aim and fire back.

    Another inherent rule: Never point your rifle at another human being.

    Why didn't he get out of there?

    Vang's pride was stinging from insults. The hunters were verbally abusive and threatened to report him for trespassing. Then they let him walk away. He was under a lot of stress in his personal life and refused to control his anger that day. He chose to take a nasty verbal confrontation to the level of a bloodbath. Is he not responsible for this? Vang could not control the insults flung at him that day, but he had no right to become judge, jury and executioner for the others.
    Read the rest.

    Wisconsin pork

    Pork is like crack-you can easily become addicted. Here is a list of Wisconsin's pork in the 2005 federal budget. Give it a good look, because you probably will not have a problem with the money being spent in your local area. If you really want to make a difference in the amount of money being spent at the federal level, though, you have to oppose the pork in your local area as hard as you oppose the pork being spent in other communities and states.

    Same Coverage Different Country.

    Check out this AP Report on the German elections:

    BERLIN - Conservative challenger Angela Merkel's party won the most votes in German elections Sunday but fell short of a clear mandate to govern, according to official results. Chancellor Gerhard staged a dramatic comeback and proclaimed that he should head the next government.

    The vote heralded the end of Schroeder's seven-year tenure but left in doubt who will follow. The inconclusive results make it likely that Germany's next government would be weakened because of the narrow vote margin and difficulties in forming a coalition.The vote centered on different visions of Germany's role in the world and how to fix its sputtering economy. Schroeder touted the country's role as a European leader and counterbalance to America, while Merkel pledged to reform the economy and strengthen relations with Washington.

    But Merkel's move to become Germany's first female chancellor puts those finance reform plans in doubt. She must now find a majority in a coalition that would likely force her to water them down.

    So let me get this straight. Merkel wins, Schroeder claims victory and says she did not win by enough so I should keep my job. So a reform minded conservative wins the poular vote and gets dismissed by the AP? Shocking.

    I don't know much about Merkel but I would guess she is decidedly more pro-America than Schroeder. No wonder the AP hates her.

    A quote from Schroeder "I do not understand how the (Christian Democratic) Union, which started off so confidently and arrogantly, takes a claim to political leadership from a disastrous election result," Schroeder said, adding defiantly that he could foresee four years of stable government "under my leadership."

    Uh Gerhard, you lost why is her result disasterous? Because the polls showed her to have a bigger lead? Yeah, polls are real accurate. Understand here folks, the German parliament will now elect the new Chancellor. I guess old Gerhard figures if he tells enough people his party actually won, he can get the job. I wonder where he learned that?

    This kind of smells like the Washington State Governor's race where they kept finding ballots behind file cabinets until the Dems won and declared all recounts over.Hang onto your hats folks, things could be a changing over in Germany.


    N.Z. Bear and Glenn Reynolds are teaming up to identify wasteful government spending (I'm tempted to ask if there's any other kind) and the whole blogosphere is invited to help.

    All you have to do is post about wasteful spending in your own state, or better yet, Congressional District, and then add what you find to the totals here.

    They're keeping score by tallying the pork identified by bloggers, versus the pork identified by Senators and Representatives. The score so far (as of Sunday night): Senators and Reps, zero dollars; Bloggers, $1,242,454,970. (UPDATE five minutes later: Make that $1,561,254,400. The blogosphere never rests.)

    So far, I see nothing listed for Wisconsin on this totals page, but I know we must have our share of pork.

    Badger bloggers, let's have at it. Read this post for the rules, and then, let's get to work.

    Ryan for President?

    The Janesville Gazette brings us an interesting but unlikely thought on the 2008 Presidential race-an all Janesville match up. Janesville native Russ Feingold is on everyone's buzz list for the Democratic nomination in 2008, but at a discussian at Hedberg Public Library on Tuesday night, former city Social Studies teacher John Eyster is going to discuss Rep. Paul Ryan and Feingold's prospects.

    Ryan in '08 is nearly an impossibility, but in the unlikely scenario that Feingold won the Presidency in '08, a Ryan run in 2012 would be interesting. I doubt I can make it to this discussion, but if anyone else does, let us know what is said.

    In re a streaking politician

    New Zealand politician Keith Locke has vowed to run nude if another politician, Rodney Hide, wins an election.

    In an unrelated note, I will allow nude blogging at the BBA if we win this week's mkeonline Blog of the Week semi-final. Which means you'll see Sean around here a lot more.

    Clarifying point
    This does not mean you will have to see Sean nude. It just means he can post in his most relaxed state. This clarification was made necessary by my fear of what Lance or Kevin may do without it.

    Saturday, September 17, 2005

    Open Records Request filed

    Since Chief Justice Abrahamson refuses to answer questions on her own about inappropriate comments she made about the housing of Sexual Predators, I have filed an Open Records Request with the Clerk of the Supreme Court for any documentation they have. Hopefully this will shed some light on things since Abrahamson has refused to even answer elected officials.

    Genoa City: Hollywood (Mid)West

    You may have seen a flash of something familiar while watching the ball game on Monday:
    A Chicago production company was so impressed with Genoa City that it decided to film certain village locations for a Budweiser commercial.

    The commercial reportedly aired for the first time Sept. 8, during the first "Monday Night Football" broadcast of the season.

    It's pretty exciting to have a crew film in your small town for a national ad campaign, so we'll forgive the Lake Geneva News for getting the date wrong. A number of local Genoa City landmarks will be on the small screen:
    In addition to the old water tower, which is located near Gideon Street, the company filmed shots in front of Krumpen's Woodworking, Walworth Street, and on the southern end of land near Barry's Bar, Fellows Road.

    Friday, September 16, 2005

    Carnival of the Badger, mark V

    Oh, man, did we drop the ball on this?

    Letters in Bottles | The Island Pundit hosted this week's Carnival of the Badger. It's a little light on participation this time around.

    Next week, the Carnival will be hosted by a liberal blog for the first time. Public Brewery has the honors.

    Let's keep this thing going. Send submissions to badgercarnival-at-gmail-dot-com, and don't forget that Nick, To Whom The World Is According, is running the overall show. Details on hosting a Carnival of the Badger can be found here.

    Vang verdict in

    The jury has found Chai Vang guilty of all 6 counts of first degree homicide and 3 counts of attempted murder.

    NYC's Bloomberg: "I Oppose Roberts"

    Remind me again, how is this bad news?

    New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg on Friday opposed John Roberts' nomination to be U.S. Supreme Court chief justice, making him the first noted Republican to break with the Bush administration over who should lead America's top court.

    Bloomberg, a former Democrat seeking re-election in a heavily Democratic city, said Roberts had failed to show a commitment to upholding the 1973 Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision establishing a right to abortion.

    "I am unconvinced that Judge Roberts accepts the landmark Roe v. Wade ruling as settled law," Bloomberg said.

    Roberts' answers to questions in Senate confirmation hearings "did not indicate a commitment to protect a woman's right to choose," he said. "For that reason I oppose the nomination of Judge Roberts as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court."

    While Bloomberg's statement is unusual from a Republican, the mayor has no standing over whether Roberts will be confirmed by the U.S. Senate as chief justice.

    Bloomberg, who became a billionaire by building the media company named after him, is ahead in polls in the New York mayoral race ahead of November's election here.

    Like many Republicans in New York, Bloomberg has long been a liberal on social issues and has been unafraid to publicly break with President George W. Bush.

    [sarcasm] Oh I'm scared. Pseudo-Republican Mike Bloomberg is against the nomination of John Roberts. Run for hills and hide; Ted Kennedy and crew have won for sure. Oh, the horror! Oh, the horror! [sarcasm]

    Seriously, has Bloomberg even been a member of the GOP for even 5 years? I remember he switched parties simply so he wouldn't have to fight for his life in the 2001 Democratic Primary.

    Reuters, you make me laugh.

    Thursday, September 15, 2005

    Blog of the Week semi-finals

    It seems like it was just yesterday I was shilling for your votes in mkeonline's Blog of the Week Contest, and here I am to do it again. I feel so, so, so dirty. Now I know how U.S. Representatives feel. In all seriousness, the mkeonline Blog of the Week semi-finals will be tough to prevail in. There are a lot of great blogs, and a lot of them are conservative blogs, which I'm sure will split the vote of conservative blog readers. So I'm not going to be bugging you all to vote everyday. I'm just going to make one vow. If we win, I lift the BBA ban on nudity.

    Now go vote!

    About Time!

    Just caught a report on WTAQ that bar owners and patrons are getting organized to fight back against the smoking ban!

    Apparently a group of bar owners has collected enough signatures to put the question to the people via referendum.

    Here is the Post Crescent story.

    The political action group Appleton Coalition for Business Owners’ Rights [MA ACBOR] staged a fund-raiser Wednesday at an eastside tavern to raise money to advertise and promote an anticipated referendum to change the smoking ban.

    Event organizers encouraged attendees to sign petitions seeking a referendum to amend the city’s workplace smoking ban to exempt holders of Class B liquor licenses. Class B licenses are issued to establishments that serve alcohol on premise.

    “We have 4,500 signatures and needed just 3,376, so we are confident we have what we need,” said Robbie Johnson, the group’s spokesman.

    The WTAQ story noted the ACBOR is also orgaining a get out the vote effort.

    Good! Too bad they did not do all of this before the last referendum!

    Wednesday, September 14, 2005

    Last Post of the Day!

    Oops. I mean only post of the day. Buehler? Buehler?

    Tuesday, September 13, 2005

    Feingold questions Roberts

    You can read the transcript here.

    Goldberg on Kohl

    Speaking of The Corner, Jonah Goldberg as this to say about Herb Kohl:
    Herb Kohl is still alive! I cannot remember the last time I saw this guy on TV. I'm still not convinced he's not an animatronic facsimile of the Senator formerly known as Herb Kohl. If you look closely very little of his body actually moves.
    That's our Herb, doing what we prefer he do-nothing. Maybe the Junior Senator from Wisconsin can learn that trick.

    They Like Beer There, Too

    Jib's nemesis links to this brilliant column regarding the political fallout of Hurricane Katrina, written by, of all people, an Irish columnist at an Irish newspaper.

    That's required reading, people. Oh, all right, here's a taste, just because I can't resist:

    As the full horror of Hurricane Katrina sinks in, thousands of desperate columnists are asking if this is the end of George Bush's presidency.

    The answer is almost certainly yes, provided that every copy of the US Constitution was destroyed in the storm. Otherwise President Bush will remain in office until noon on January 20th, 2009, as required by the 20th Amendment, after which he is barred from seeking a third term anyway under the 22nd Amendment.

    Why are you still here? Go read the whole thing.


    That's what President Bush should have begun asking himself, rather than simply tapping one of the most charming and well-liked former presidents to help in the wake of the 2004 tsunami and Hurricane Katrina:

    What would Clinton do?

    Don't get me wrong - this isn't a sarcastic attack on the failures and petty triumphs of the 42nd President; I appreciate the bond that's developed among the Bush presidents and Clinton. It redeems Clinton to the extent he can be redeemed by employing his greatest asset: His charm and warmth, which made everyone he came into contact with feel like he understood and cared, and would be able to help.

    I'm serious. Bush needs to set aside his reserve, and let the warmth that shone with the victims and the hurting families of the Sept. 11 attacks beam forth some much-needed healing. It's not that he hasn't failed; he has. That's no excuse not to pick yourself up and resume the job you were hired to do.

    And there's a lot that needs to be healed: a broken land, a raft of refugees, and Bush's own growing aversion to the attacks of the media and political rivals. He needed to hold people's hands during the hurricane and be there in a very tangible way shortly afterward.

    He needs to be a more vocal and visible arbiter now, not simply acting as referee between Mayor Nagin and Governor Blanco behind the closed doors of Air Force One, or reassigning FEMA, two weeks after the worst of the hurricane's force has passed.

    He needs to revamp his "faith-based initiatives," turning them into Community-based Initiatives, helping to organize and make effective the superior efforts of the hundreds of charities and millions of citizens who are reaching out with money and practical help right now. Bush can make the appropriate branches of government available to these efforts in order to streamline them without co-opting them, and he can give the governors and mayors an example to follow.

    He needs to begin a month of town-hall meetings in each region of the country to develop a plan that comes out of the communities - and not the taxpayers' pockets - to respond with the money, goods, and teams to help with the rebuilding and relief. Then he needs to share these findings publicly, acknowledging the people who contributed and the people they hope to serve.

    And finally, Bush has to do the one thing Clinton never did: He has to lead.

    Update: From other WWCD? posters - XB234C at The Viceroy's Fuguestate, and for those jonesin' for some Cindy, Sweetness & Light has a knockout WWCD? .

    Cross-posted at Guide to Midwestern Culture and No Government Cheese.

    Whose side is the AP on

    I came across this gem of a headline this morning in the MJS it is an AP story and headline in the MJS defense.

    First why do they insist on calling them insurgents not terrorists? But that isn't what struck me as being odd. Since when did 2 count them 2 mortar rounds become "shelling" How about a little truth in the Headlines "Terrorist lob 2 mortar rounds then run for their lives"

    You see shelling implies a long term barrage, use of large cannons and actually hitting a target or two.

    I mean to me this is just AP showing its MSM antiwar bias, I mean a large number of people will never read anything more than the headline. They know that and that is why they use words like "Shelling"

    Why didn't the AP lead with "Over 400 terrorist captured, 200 terrorist killed in Tal Afar region battle." I mean that news was in the same article. No they chose to lead with what they knew would be seen as bad news. Even though there were no casualties in the motar "shelling".

    Has anyone else wondered would support for the war be slipping if the MSM reported the good things that are happening in Iraq instead of always making it look like we are losing. Come on Michael Yon is only one man and he has done more to get out good news about just one city Mosul, then the whole MSM reports on the whole country.

    You have to wonder who side the AP is really on.


    Update: Dean brought to my attention the link goes to a different article at AP it still mentions the 2 motar rounds being "Shelling" but it is not the article I linked to this am. The author is different also. I tried to search the AP for the original story and its gone or has been merged into this new story.

    Monday, September 12, 2005

    Walker Tears ACL

    You know you follow politics just a wee bit too much when you see that headline and think: "How did that happen? I just saw him yesterday and he was fine." And then you turn red with embarrassment because you realize the news item is about Javon and not Scott.

    I suppose the same could be said when you read the Journal Sentinel's "Walker wants to kill babies and old ladies" type headlines and wonder when Javon turned into a Republican.

    NOW's Roberts' Hearing Schedule

    The gang of liberal feminists that are NOW - the National Organization of Women - released its schedule of protests during the John Roberts SCOTUS hearings.

    NRO's Kathyrn Jean Lopez was nice enough to pass it along.
    Tuesday, September 13 ? Friday, September 16 Daily Events (Meet behind Senate Hart Office Building on C Street, between 1st and 2nd Streets, NE)

    Tuesday: "Save Title IX" Come in your sports gear, college T-shirts or sweatshirts, and bring lots of signs!

    Wednesday: "Demand Pay Equity" Visibility Bring cookies, brownies, etc. for our mock bake sale! We'll have a booth with signs "selling" goodies- $1 for men and 76 cents for women! And as always, bring signs!

    Thursday: "Save Reproductive Rights" Visibility Come barefoot and pregnant (if you're not pregnant, a pillow works!), bring caution tape, hangers, and lots of signs!

    Friday: "Civil Rights" Visibility
    Apparently they are still planning the Friday visual after all that fun things from the first three days.

    Here are some ideas that conservative groups can borrow as counter-protests to the NOW protests.

    Feel free to pass this on.

    Tuesday - "End Title IX": Men, show up in wrestling singlets and headgear, track uniforms, baseball uniforms, or swimming Speedos, and other Men's Collegiate athletic gear from programs that have been sacrificed to the alter of Title IX quotas. Women, show up with signs saying: "I had a Daughter and a Son. Title IX only lets me cheer for my Daughter."

    Wednesday - Bring signs saying: "Hey, Conservative College Kids Thought up that Idea First!!" or "NOW - We NOW support traditional gender roles." and "Their Bake Sale Proves It - Back to the Kitchen Ladies."

    Thursday - Nothing, their protest only proves their idiocy, why try to showcase stuffing a pillow up a skirt?

    UW Tuition May Be Waived for Katrina Victims

    The Beloit Daily News reports today that the UW Regents have moved to waive fall 2005 tuition for students displaced by Hurricane Katrina.
    Board President David Walsh said the waiver could be made official as early as next week for students who transferred to the University of Wisconsin after the storm closed their Gulf Coast schools.

    In the meantime, the board agreed Friday not to bill the affected students for the fall term.

    If legislators object, the regents could set a special tuition rate for them later. The board voted unanimously that any special tuition rate would not exceed that set for state residents.

    Two hundred students are now in the UW system, thanks to Katrina - 100 of them at Madison, and 25 of them at Milwaukee. The legislature will have to approve the decision, which I endorse. My single hope is that they will set up a fund to offset the costs, if any, rather than tapping tax dollars for these students.
    Katie Nix, 18, of Racine, who enrolled at the UW-Madison campus after evacuating the Tulane University campus the same day she arrived as the storm approached Aug. 26, said the regents' action was a great move."It makes it a lot easier for all of us," she said.
    Nix - who has been told that her belongings in Tulane's dorm are safe - says she will return to Tulane. That's as it should be. But I am sure that fellow Badgers are glad to help her now, and will be happy if she decides to stay in our beautiful state.

    Sunday, September 11, 2005

    Walker Tears ACL

    After one game my generous Packers prediction gets tossed into the trash. With Walker gone I'll be very pleased with a 8-8 season. Maybe I should jump on the Saints bandwagon.

    Sexual Predator Bill update

    Citizens for a Safe Wisconsin is still doing the hard work of protesting our kids from Sexual Predators, they can use our help. Please pass the following information along to your friends. I got the following note from Andy, one of our regular commenters and someone that I have come to rely on for CFSW news.
    Hi Partrick,

    Sheri Hanneman and Sandy Mayer-Johnson are collecting signatures of people who support AB-591 ( They will take those signatures with them to the public hearing this Tuesday the 13th and present them with their presentations. They are looking for 500 or more (a lot more) signatures.

    I talked with Sandy and she said that they will accept emails as a signature substitute. They just require that the sender say "I support AB-591", City of Residence, and their name.

    Sandy can be emailed at
    Sheri can be emailed at

    You can see and share this flier with your friends.
    From the AB 591 Flier
    Citizens for a Safe Wisconsin (CFSW) will introduce a bill outlining a comprehensive sex predator management program in the Fall Session of the Wisconsin Legislature. A key component of this comprehensive bill is GPS monitoring. Supporting AB 591 is essential to passing future legislation including CFSW’s bill which will help protect our children from these predators.

    Please go read the entire flier, they have more details as well as contact information of key legislators. Let them know that you support this Bill and you think they should too.

    CFSW also provides a Class Action Letter that you can print out or email to your Representatives.

    Class Action Letter
    Members of the Wisconsin State Assembly,

    We respectfully submit this class-action letter of support for AB 591 Relating to: global positioning system tracking for certain sex offenders while on probation, extended supervision, parole, supervised release, or conditional release and providing a penalty.

    The monitoring systems of sex offenders and predators in Wisconsin are minimally sufficient compared to those of many other states. Wisconsin leads the nation in the release of sexually violent persons and we demand that our state also lead the nation in its approach to managing and monitoring those predators who are released into society.

    Again, please read the entire document, then put it to good use. We owe it to our kids!

    September 11th memories

    If anyone is interested I found this 911 tribute site. He has some very moving videos about this terrible day. Even after 4 years I find it hard to watch the whole video about the WTC attack without breaking down it is that painful.

    To steal an idea I have seen at a number of other blogs a lot of them by people from NYC feel free to leave your 9-11 what you were doing and what you remember from those days in the comments. I think the MSM has done a very poor job of post 911 they have tried to shelter the US people from the horrors of that day when they should have continued to show us and remind us of "Why We Fight"

    So where were you on that Day? Here is where I was


    Update the guys over at Letters in a Bottle have some nice pics and live blogging of a memorial on Bascom Hill in Madison. Note the reaction to a Sept 11th memorial by some of the people who are walking by.

    Saturday, September 10, 2005

    The Quality of Doneness

    Good writers use words. Great writers make words up!

    Found this on RealClearPolitics - an anecdote from a Bill Kristol essay, which he wrote for the Weekly Standard's 10th anniversary:

    I remember lamenting aloud at an editorial meeting that there was one article in the otherwise terrific issue we'd shortly be printing that was okay, but wasn't really at the highest level of quality. Fred Barnes immediately set me straight about this. Perhaps it wasn't the best imaginable piece of writing, Fred said of the essay in question. But the best imaginable piece of writing, in this case, did not exist, he pointed out. And the piece we had in hand, by contrast, possessed what Fred considered among the most important journalistic qualities: 'the quality of doneness.'

    I am so hip.

    Minimum markup

    Owen has a great post over at Boots & Sabers on the minimum markup law. Here's a hint on part of his post: It ain't your local Ma & Pa shop that's behind preserving the minimum markup. Quite the opposite, in fact.

    MPS students voting with their feet.

    According to this article in the MJS over a 1000 students a year have chosen to leave MPS. Over the six year history of the Wisconsin Open Enrollment plan 6900 students have opted out of MPS. Remember these numbers do not include Choice Students or Students being Homeschooled. This is just the students who have chosen to go to public schools outside of MPS.

    I was a little disappointed but not surprised that the MJS seemed more worried about the 32 million dollars MPS lost, not why the students are chosing to leave.

    I personally think this is a good thing for parents of children who live in Milwaukee, If they think they can get a better education for their children outside of MPS they should have that right.


    Re: New Orleans gun seizures

    Posted about the confiscation of guns in New Orleans here (which turned out to be the 1000th post, lucky me!).

    Today (correction: it was late last night) Glenn Reynolds links to an Volokh Conspiracy article saying the gun confiscation going on in New Orleans is "blatantly illegal".

    Wisconsin gun owners: what do you think about this?

    Friday, September 09, 2005

    1000 posts

    Mary Eileen's post this morning was the BBA's 1,000th post. I think everyone would agree with me that it has been a fun first 9 months here at the BBA. I'd like to thank Charlie Sykes for providing the spark that really got this moving last January, to all of the members who have participated here, the entire Wisconsin blogosphere, left and right, for creating a very active community, and to all of our readers.

    And Lance, I know you're disappointed at having post numbers 999 and 1,001. Keep shooting for the stars, bud, and I'm sure #2500 will be yours.