Another New Fair WI Add

Well done....

A Look at Walker's Dumb Statement:

His release:

MILWAUKEE – County Executive Scott Walker offers the following statement on the CountyBoard’s vote on the sales tax proposal:

“The vote by the members of the county board today is totally irresponsible. Not only is it wrong to push for a $60 million tax increase at a time when people and jobs are leaving the area, the worst part is that the referendum is just advisory. There is nothing in the referendum that will force the state government to sign off on a $60 million tax increase. All this does is shift the focus off the real decisions that must be made to preserve our parks system. The better longterm answer is a Park District.”

Some Comments:

Walker: "jobs are leaving the area"

From the Milwaukee Journal - 7/26/06:
Milwaukee area sees increase in jobs
The four-county Milwaukee area had its second month in a row of year-to-year employment gains in June and kept its unemployment rate even with a year ago at 5.5%.

Walker: "the worst part is that the referendum is just advisory"

That is not how Walker felt about the 'advisory' death penalty referendum:

Walker put out a statement last week - with little fanfare - saying he backs a referendum that would ask voters if they would support the death penalty

Walker: "it wrong to push for a $60 million tax increase" and "The better long-term answer is a Park District.”

The Park District is a tax increase, it is just Walker's shell game of where it goes:
Along with two Republican state lawmakers, Walker wants to empower a separately elected park district board to levy property taxes equal to the 2006 county parks levy of $18.4 million.

Walker: "is totally irresponsible"

Yes, you are, Scott. Solve problems, don't just change your opinions and accounts in the political wind.


Quote of the Day: Molly Ivans on Bush Edition

The poor man who is currently our president has reached such a point of befuddlement that he thinks stem cell research is the same as taking human lives, but that 40,000 dead Iraqi civilians are progress toward democracy.


The Scarlet 'R'

A Republican Senator, up for re-election on running with Bush:

He spoke of his party affiliation as though it were a congenital defect rather than a choice. "It's an impediment. It's a hurdle I have to overcome," he said. "I've got an 'R' here, a scarlet letter."

That left the candidate in a difficult spot. "For me to pretend I'm not a Republican would be a lie," he reasoned. But to run as a proud Republican? "That's going to be tough, it's going to be tough to do," he said. "If this race is about Republicans and Democrats, I lose."

Study War?

LTC Bob Bateman (regular contributor to Altercation) makes this point that I think is relevant to the political discussions of today:

So I enjoin you to read... but I think that I must ask you to read about war, become educated in war, so that, in the end, you can discuss war with reason, facts, understanding of theories, and hard-nosed comprehension.

Note, in all of that I did not say that you should like war, or that you should condone war, or even that you should agree with the idea of war in any way shape or form. But just as an environmentalist must study economics and the science of, say, the logging or oil industry to be an effective environmentalist, so too must a citizen study those things which affect their nation most directly. For four years now, the thing which has affected us most directly has been, well, war. Even our presidential elections, to some degree, hinged upon events in a war long past and even more on perceptions of who would be more astute in their application of force within war. (No, I am not endorsing one side or the other, I am merely noting how reputations on some topics affect larger events.)

What will we learn by reading:

...even fewer have read the thought-pieces which resulted in the idiotic theory of “Shock and Awe.” But you need to read a lot of history, and at least some military theory, to really understand how damned stupid the idea of Shock and Awe really was, and how it has been tried (under different names) over and over again since the late 1920s, and it never works! Perhaps, just perhaps, if some people in the right places had read more military history, well, things might have turned out different.

3 Strikes and You're Out, Appleton...

Will they finally realize they lost (twice all ready):

Bar Owners In Appleton Try to Force Referendum

60 bar owners in Appleton are trying to force a referendum, exempting them from the city's smoking ban. The proposed referendum calls for exempting free-standing bars, but not bars inside businesses like restaurants and bowling alleys.
Bill Maloney with the XTreme Bar tells NBC26 he dropped off petitions to 60 bar owners today. "The bar business in Appleton is really struggling and we just want to be treated like everyone else," Maloney said.
"We're not saying smoking is good for you - we're just saying we just want to be treated like everyone else."
Maloney says bar owners have until August 13th to collect signatures. After that, the common council will have 30 days to make a decision.
The existing ban was approved in April 2005 and has been in effect since July 2005.

His statement is terrible. They are not trying to be treated like everyone else, they are trying to get special treatment. Every other workplace does not allow smoking. Why should just one type allow it?

When these first started happening, I was on the side of 'It's their establishment, let them decide if they want smoking or not.' I have since changed my mind.

Why? It is an Equal Employment Opportunity issue with me. People with breathing difficulties cannot work as a server in bars or restaurants that allow smoking.

"They can find other work." I am often told in response. Imagine if an office building refused to build a ramp to allow people in wheelchairs access? The public outcry would be deafening. It is the same issue with smoking. The service industry is the fastest growing segment of the economy, and they are barring people with respitory problems from it.

Now, imagine if your company allowed just a little poison in the coffee everyday. Not enough to kill you, or for you even to feel the effects right away. However, enough to provide for long-term health problems. That would be illegal and immoral, yet noone feels that it is wrong for business owners to fight to force exposure to cancer and disease causing second-hand smoke.

Maybe we should let asbestos be used again. Second-hand smoke in the workplace has the potential to be the asbestos of this century.

Finally, as I have gone out in Appleton several times since the ban. It seems to me that since it has gone into effect, they have built a new 2-story bar, and many of them still have lines out the door to get in. This does not look like a business killer to me.

If it were true that smoking bans kill business, why isn't the Fish House the busiest bar of Appleton's downtown? It is still empty often, yet it has had a fences in area behind it where you can have your drink outside it (and still smoke) since before the ban. It is very empty when I go past it.

There should be a line around the block.

Let the ban stand - it will continue to pass.

Fair WI Has a New Add

Good job on it. Click here to watch.


Great Cartoon - Signing Statements

Congrats Awais!

College Democrats of America Elect Wisconsin College Student as its National Vice President

Monday, July 24, 2006
Jessica Erickson

(608) 255-5172 x 406 (office)
(608) 255-8919 (fax)

MADISON – At its annual National Convention in St. Louis, Missouri this past weekend, the College Democrats of America elected UW-Madison student and former College Democrats of Wisconsin Chair Awais Khaleel as Vice President of its national organization.
Flanked by the support of more than 30 Wisconsin College Democrats and the support of 30 state delegations, Khaleel’s victory shows the strong leadership of the College Democrats of Wisconsin.
“I cannot think of a better student leader to represent Wisconsin at the national level,” said Joe Wineke, Chair of the Democratic Party of Wisconsin. “Awais is one of the hardest working students in the party, and he has proven time and again his dedication to fighting for Wisconsin’s strong tradition of progressive values. I give my congratulations to Awais and wish him the best of luck.”
The College Democrats of America (CDA) is the official student outreach arm of the Democratic Party. In 2004, CDA recruited activists on more than 1,200 campuses in all 50 states. In Wisconsin, student voter turnout is consistently among the highest in the nation each year, voting overwhelmingly for Democratic candidates, Wineke said.
Khaleel, a Kenosha native, is the first Muslim and/or Indian vice president in the history of the College Democrats of America.

Good Cartoon

From the Center for American Progress

Gas at Highest Price in 25 Years - Remember Gore Gas?

Here is a story from 2000 where Bush was hammering Gore on gas prices:

Bush this week began hammering at Gore for failing to exert enough pressure on the oil-producing nations to boost supplies. Bush contrasted the way his father, former president Bush, dealt with the oil cartel with the way President Clinton has performed in the diplomatic arena.
''These are countries with which we should have an enormous amount of capital,'' Bush said during a campaign appearance. ''These are countries where it wasn't that long ago that a President Bush helped Kuwait, or a United States helped Mexico, and I think the fundamental question is, `Why can't the administration get anything done on the diplomatic side?'''

But, what do we see now?

The average retail price of a a gallon of gasoline topped $3 in the United States last week, the highest price in 25 years, according to the latest nationwide Lundberg survey released Sunday.
The national average for self-serve, regular unleaded gas was $3.0150 per gallon on July 21, a rise of almost 2 cents per gallon from two weeks ago when the average was $2.9952, the survey of about 7,000 gas stations said.

Once again, we told you so...

Good Cartoon: