Nov. 13, 2018

Ringo Peace Party

by Leon Irby (author's profile)


While many judicial candidates choose not to fully exercise their First Amendment rights to speak on disputed legal or political issues, they can and should campaign on judicial independence. With spring elections approaching, candidates for judicial office should speak to the electorate on the importance of protecting fair and impartial courts.


I hope someone gets my message in the universe!!!


At high noon peace and love!!!!!


[diagram of the planets, with a sign saying YOU ARE HERE pointing to Earth]

"Man is God's marvelous creation. Crowned with glory and because of this you can't quite hem him in. You can put him in... prison, but somehow his mind (imagination) will break out through the bars and to scratch across the pages of history."

- MLK, Jr.

New Book
aka a 3:00 A.M. alarm clock wake-up call from the fake "AMERICAN DREAM"!!!!

"Twilight of American Sanity: A Psychiatrist Analyzes the Age of Trump" [William Morrow copyright 2017]

Author: Allen Frances, MD.

See: A professional reviewer's review, below, p.p. 45

My Own View

Dr. Allen Frances' competent and purely objective analysis confirm my own held long time view of what is obvious: American voters! Are not as mislabeled:

A. Liberal
B. Conservative
C. Neo-Liberal
D. Neo-Conservative
C. Independent
D. Democrat
E. Republican
F. Radical

The whole pot of alphabet soup! The obvious and indubitable facts are there only two kinds of American voters:

1.] Sane
2.] Insane

One salient instant illustration now with unlimited more upcoming:

Wisconsin Governor race 2010

Gov. (R. Wisc) Scott Walker was filmed in what became a popular documentary: overheard: telling Ms. Diane Hendericks, Jonesville, Wisc., billionaire member of Koch Brothers Group...:

I'll divide the state and when I'll give all what you want [...]!

He was twice elected and now in close race with [D. Wisc.] candidate Tony Evers.

However, despite his vow to the billionaires' club! His voters elected him! And he kept those promises:

See: Marquette Law School poll "upfront" Sun. 07-22-2018 9:30 A.M. CDT

Showed Wisconsin has never before polled so evenly ("divided" mine) split...

It's not Trump. It's us: it's us! From the guy who literally wrote the book (as in DSM) on mental health disorders comes Twilight of American Sanity: A Psychiatrist Analyzes the Age of Trump [William Morrow]. Allen Frances, MD, a renowned clinician who in February scolded other mental health professionals for publicly diagnosing Donald Trump with narcissistic personality disorder [they're not supposed to do that kind of thing] is now scolding us for our selfishness, our denial and our wishful thinking at the expense of our children's, country's, and planet's future. We've brought this president upon ourselves, he writes Trump is sort of a plot point in our existential survival; his presence will either spur us to reform ourselves and/or our society or it will speed along our demise. Part political rant [Trump, Tribalism, and the Attack on Democracy" is one chapter title], part self help ["Why We Make Such Bad Decisions" is another], this is an unusual and important book about our responsibility for the mess we're in.

- by Lisa Shea

- Source: Us: Book
October 2017, p. 199


Fox Conn Deal a Taiwanese Manufacturer

Gov. Walker & 3 billion give away to Fox Conn:

"Fox Conn is the largest contract manufacturer of electronics, best known for making iPhones, but with a long list of customers including Sony Corp, Dell Inc. and Blackberry Ltd..."

"The total incentive package is 10 times larger than anything ever approved in Wisconsin and would be the biggest state subsidy to a foreign company in the United States."

see below, p. 5

A give back to his billionaire supporters; see below, p.p. 6-7


Foxconn won $3 billion tax credit battle, but the public relations campaign continues
Taiwanese manufacturer Foxconn has won the political battle for a $3 billion state tax credit, but the campaign to win over the public, including many in the business community, continues.

The public relations effort comes as Gov. Scott Walker mounts a campaign for a third term, his Democratic challengers criticize the Foxconn deal as a waste of taxpayer resources and initial public polling shows evidence of public opposition. One of Walker's closest political advisers is also involved in Foxconn's communications strategy.

Last week the company sent Louis Woo, a top Foxconn executive, to participate in a panel discussion at a Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce event in Madison where he cracked jokes with fellow panelists Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. CEO Mark Hogan and Department of Administration Secretary Scott Neitzel in front of a projected map of Wisconsin with ripples emanating across the state from a star in Racine County.

Woo said the company's 10-year vision is to create a "Wisconn Valley" that will rival California's Silicon Valley. He added that in order to recruit workers it will be imperative "to maintain and even increase the pristine of Wisconsin, the beauty of Wisconsin, the environmental values of Wisconsin" - even though one of the main criticisms of the deal is that it exempts the company from certain state environmental regulations that other businesses must follow.

"Why are we attracted to Wisconsin? Mostly it's the people", Woo said. "It's because of you guys that we are attracted to Wisconsin." Gov. Scott Walker, speaking at the same event, addressed right away a concern that he said has been on the mind of many business owners as the Foxconn facility creates as many as 13,000 direct jobs, 22,000 indirect jobs and 10,000 construction jobs in Racine County.

"One of our goals is to make sure we're not only fulfilling the needs that they're going to have directly and indirectly there but that those are a net gain when it comes to jobs in the state and that we're not taking employees from other employers across the state", Walker said.

In its recent series on the worker shortage, the Wisconsin State Journal reported how some business owners are concerned about where Foxconn will find 13,000 workers when near record-low unemployment has made it difficult to find workers. Speaking with reporters Friday, Walker acknowledged the concerns about Wisconsin's worker shortage in relation to Foxconn have been continual and widespread.

"There's usually not a week, sometimes not a day that doesn't go by when I haven't heard specifically from employers about concerns they have about filling positions", Walker said. "And so as I look ahead knowing that obviously the (Foxconn) building will start next year and the full-scale hiring... I'm going to make sure that we're not waiting until we've got an insurmountable problem, that we're acting now."

Walker said that after announcing the Foxconn deal in July, he met with representatives from German candymaker Haribo to reassure the company that it wouldn't be competing with Foxconn for workers. He brought representatives from Milwaukee-based workforce consultant Manpower to share a report that had been prepared regarding the Foxconn deal. "We actually involved Manpower to help us make the case about how there are different markets in terms of the type of workers they're looking for and different ways even though they're in southeastern Wisconsin", Walker said. "It was something that renewed their confidence."

Earlier this year, Haribo landed a $21 million income tax credit incentive from the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. - at the time the agency's fourth largest tax credit award - to create 385 jobs in Pleasant Prairie.

Haribo officials didn't respond to a request for comment.

Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce, the state's largest business group, also declined to discuss what they are hearing from businesses about the Foxconn deal and their public relations strategy.

Foxconn's public relations effort is being overseen by Platform Communications, a company owned by Walker campaign political adviser Keith Gilkes. A Platform spokeswoman declined to discuss the group's communications strategy. The company provided a statement saying over the coming weeks and months, it will continue to engage with business leaders and the public as the company builds its campus in Racine County and grows an "extensive Wisconsin-based supply chain that will support this facility." Polls from Marquette Law School and Democratic-leaning Public Policy Polling suggested the deal isn't wildly popular. The Marquette Poll was limited to southeastern Wisconsin but found 38 percent saying it was worth the $3 billion state investment and 48 percent saying it wasn't. The PPP poll found statewide 41 percent opposed the Foxconn deal, 34 percent supported it and 26 percent weren't sure.

The Walker campaign declined to discuss any internal polling, but noted Walker has talked up Foxconn on the campaign trail after initially not mentioning it in his kickoff speech in Waukesha.

At an event in Superior soon after - in the opposite corner of the state from Racine County and the location of a failed economic development deal from 2012 involving Kestrel Aircraft - Walker said Foxconn is "going to have to have construction workers from one end of the state to the other" and purchase $1.4 billion from "companies in Superior and all over".

"Not only was Foxconn the right thing to do for hard-working families - excitement around this historic investment will continue to grow as shovels enter the ground, suppliers and workers across the state support the project, and tens of thousands of jobs are created", campaign spokesman Nate Craft said.

All the major Democratic candidates running for governor have criticized the deal. State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Evers launched an ad in August highlighting how taxpayers won't recoup the lost state revenue for 25 years. Rep. Dana Wachs, D-Eau Claire, who voted against the deal, decried the "staggering price tag borne by taxpayers" and "lack of protections for workers, our water and air." Milwaukee businessman Andy Gronik called it a "shell game". Former Democratic Party of Wisconsin chairman Matt Flynn called it a "desperate deal".

The criticism prompted a response last month from the Republican Party of Wisconsin and the GOP leaders of the Legislature's economic development committees, who said "Democrats are so desperate to score a few cheap political points that they are willing to put hard working families at risk by creating a chilling effect on investment and job creation."

Rep. John Nygren, R-Marinette, also wrote a column recently defending the deal, saying "while Foxconn may be located in southeastern Wisconsin, its impact will be felt statewide."

Rep. Todd Novak, R-Dodgeville, one of two Assembly Republicans who voted against the deal, said before the vote he heard from business owners concerned about what impact Foxconn would have on their ability to find workers. He said he heard from all across the political spectrum: "What are we going to get out of it?"

Novak said many of his concerns about the deal were addressed when WEDC signed the Foxconn contract, which spelled out a timeline for when the company would have to create the 13,000 jobs in order to qualify for the $3 billion in tax credit.

FOXCON 05-25-2018

Wisconsin Assembly approves Foxconn incentives
MADISON, Wis. (AP) - A Wisconsin state Assembly committee approved a $3 billion tax incentive package on Monday for Taiwan-based Foxconn Technology Group, the first vote in what could be an intense month of legislative action to quickly pass the massive deal.

The Republican-controlled Assembly's jobs and economy committee voted 8-5 along party lines to send the bill to the full Assembly, which plans to take it up Thursday. Republican-authored tweaks were approved that attempt to address some concerns raised by critics that the state is giving away too much to win the $10 billion plant that could employ up to 13,000 workers.

But the core of the proposal remains - including $3 billion in tax breaks for meeting investment and employment targets. The panel rejected 22 Democratic amendments that sought, in part, to provide extra protections for taxpayers and the environment and ensure that workers come from Wisconsin, are paid a living wage and have union protections.

"I ask that we take a deep breath, slow this down a bit and enter into further discussions to come up with the best deal possible", said Rep. Tod Ohnstad, a Democrat from Kenosha near where the plant may locate.

Republicans defended the deal as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

"This is an investment that makes sense and we cannot look the other way and let this opportunity go by", Republican Rep. Bob Kulp said.

The Legislature's budget committee could hold a hearing on the measure early next week, with a vote in the Republican-controlled Senate sometime shortly after that. "Rather than rushing through a $3 billion tax break for a foreign corporation, we need to make sure Wisconsin taxpayers aren't being taken for a ride", said Democratic Senate Minority Leader Jennifer Shilling in a statement.

The proposal must clear both the state Assembly and Senate in identical form and be signed by Gov. Scott Walker before taking effect. Walker negotiated the deal, which was announced by President Donald Trump with great fanfare about two weeks ago. The deal requires the Legislature to pass the tax break bill by Sept. 30.

Despite the Democratic opposition, Republican Assembly Speaker Robin Vos said last week he expected the bill to pass with bipartisan support. Foxconn is eyeing locations in Kenosha and Racine counties in southeast Wisconsin, areas of the state that include several Democratic lawmakers. It also is considering a secondary site in Dane County, a Democratic stronghold.

Foxconn has said it may invest $10 billion on the plant that would open in 2020 with 3,000 but could expand to 13,000 people within six years.

Concerns about what the state is offering Foxconn increased last week when the nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau said it will take at least 25 years for Wiscosin taxpayers to break even on the proposed incentives. It would take Wisconsin longer to break even depending on how many workers at the plant come from Illinois, the analysis said.

Under the bill, for every acre of wetland disturbed at the Foxconn site, two acres would have to be restored. The amendment approved Monday would say those should be in the same watershed, if possible. But other key environmental provisions, including exempting Foxconn from having to file an environmental impact statement, remained. The committee also voted to tie payroll tax credits to the number of jobs Foxconn creates that pay between $30,000 and $100,000. The bill was also changed to call for state officials to encourage in its contract with Foxconn that it hire Wisconsin residents, addressing concerns that many of the workers would come from neighboring Illinois.

The committee also approved spending $20 million on worker training to help create a pipeline for high-tech workers who would be needed at the plant.

If constructed as promised, the Foxconn facility would be the first liquid crystal display monitor manufacturing plant outside of Asia.

[page of other news, not related to Foxconn]

Wisconsin Legislature approves $3B incentive for Foxconn
MADISON, Wis. (AP) - The Wisconsin Assembly sent a $3 billion incentive package for Taiwan-based Foxconn to Gov. Scott Walker on Thursday, signing off a deal to lure the electronics giant to the state with the biggest subsidy to a foreign company in U.S. history.

The bill approved on a bipartisan 64-31 vote would make $2.85 billion available to Foxconn Technology Group if it invests $10 billion and hires 13,000 workers. The Senate approved the proposal Tuesday.

The Republican governor was in South Korea on a trade mission at the time of the vote but pledged to sign the incentives package into law soon.

Walker, who negotiated the deal and is its lead champion, joined President Donald Trump in announcing Foxconn's plans to build in Wisconsin at a White House event in July, heralding it as a game-changer for American manufacturing.

Assembly Democrats, who didn't have the votes to stop it, slammed the proposal Thursday as being unfairly rigged to benefit Foxconn at the expense of taxpayers. But Republican Assembly Speaker Robin Vos defended it as an unprecedented opportunity for the state and country.

"What's rigged is the deal for the taxpayer, the workers, the families and ultimately those of us who have the foresight to realize when a good deal is put in front of you", Vos said.

Foxconn is the largest contract manufacturer of electronics, best known for making iPhones, but with a long list of customers including Sony Corp., Dell Inc. and BlackBerry Ltd. The Wisconsin plant would construct liquid crystal display panels for televisions, computers and other uses. The total incentive package is 10 times larger than anything ever approved in Wisconsin and would be the biggest state subsidy to a foreign company in the United States. Foxconn issued an unsigned statement thanking Wisconsin, saying the incentives "will help us move forward with our plans to build the state-of-the-art advanced display manufacturing campus." It also pledged to make extensive use of the supply chain in the state to make Wisconsin "a center of worldwide high-tech manufacturing".

Critics have warned that there aren't enough protections for taxpayers to recover payments from Foxconn if it automates production and fires workers. They've also said more needs to be done to guarantee that Wisconsin workers and businesses get preference during the construction phase of the plant, and once it's up and running. Foxconn has said it hopes to open the plant in 2020 with 3,000 workers but that the workforce could grow to 13,000.

The Assembly passed the bill with all Republicans and four Democrats in support. Two Republicans joined all other Democrats against.

Opponents objected to a provision that would allow the Wisconsin Supreme Court to take appeals of certain lawsuits related to Foxconn, skipping the appeals court. No other business in the state is provided such an expedited route to the Supreme Court. Under the bill, the company would have 15 years to access the maximum $2.85 billion in cash payments tied to meeting the investment and hiring numbers. They can also receive $150 million in sales tax exemptions on construction equipment.

The Walker administration is charged with negotiating minimum hiring numbers to trigger the payments in the contract with Foxconn which has not been finalized. Foxconn has also not selected the exact location for the plant, but it has focused on property in Racine County in between Milwaukee and Chicago.

Democrats have also raised alarms about exemptions under the bill that waive requirements for Foxconn to first develop an environmental impact statement before constructing what could be a 20-million-square-foot (1.86-million-square-meter) campus. Foxconn would also be allowed to build in wetland and waterways.

[page of other news]


Foxconn selects company with close ties to Walker
MADISON, Wis. (AP) - Foxconn Technology Group on Monday selected a company led by a Republican megadonor with close ties to Gov. Scott Walker to develop the master plan for its massive campus in Wisconsin.

The Taiwan-based electronics giant said it chose Hammes Company to be the lead developer on the $10 billion project that will house a display-screen factory on a campus spread over 2,900 acres (1173.61 hectares) not far from the Illinois border. Foxconn could qualify for up to $4.5 billion in state and local taxpayer incentives if it employs 13,000 workers as envisioned.

Hammes is led by Jon Hammes, Walker's campaign finance chairman for his re-election bid this year. Hammes is part owner of the NBA's Milwaukee Bucks and has given hundreds of thousands of dollars to Republicans, including more than $15,000 to Walker, and GOP causes over the years. Hammes said in a statement that he was "delighted" to have his Milwaukee-based company selected and it will provide "planning, strategic advisory and development related services".

Alan Yeung, Foxconn's director of U.S. strategic initiatives, called the Hammes Company "one of the most trusted providers of real estate solutions in the United States." Yeung said the goal of the Foxconn project in Wisconsin is to become a "key base for scientific and technology cooperation between the U.S. and Asia, where technical talent and entrepreneurs in America can meet investors and leading technologists from Japan, China and elsewhere from Asia." Democrats who opposed the Foxconn project as a taxpayer boondoggle pointed to the selection of Hammes as another example of political cronyism.

"It didn't take long for millions of taxpayer dollars promised to Foxconn to end up in the hands of Scott Walker's re-election campaign people", said Wisconsin Democratic Party chairwoman Martha Laning. "Foxconn, like everything else, is all about helping Scott Walker save his own career and not about the people of Wisconsin."

More than a dozen Democrats are running for a chance to take on Walker in August. Several of them took to social media to decry the Hammes pick.

"Follow the money, it always leads to Walker", tweeted Democratic candidate Andy Gronik, a Milwaukee businessman. Kelda Roys, a former state lawmaker who is also running, tweeted that she wasn't surprised because "brazenly corrupt behavior is exactly what we've come to expect from Walker."

And Democratic state Rep. Dana Wachs, another candidate, tweeted "I'm running out of 'surprise and outrage', for all this back-door dealing Gov. Walker is doing. He's lining the pocket of his campaign donors with TAXPAYER MONEY. It's got to stop." Walker spokeswoman Amy Hasenberg said the state has no authority over such a decision, and said Democrats "are choosing to attack the creation of real family sustaining jobs in our state."

Hammes donated $150,000 in 2015 to a political action committee backing Walker's run for president. Campaign finance records show Hammes has given more than $15,000 to Walker since 2005.

FoxCon 05-31-2018

Wisconsin property owners appeal ruling in Foxconn lawsuit
MOUNT PLEASANT, Wis. (AP) - Property owners in southeastern Wisconsin who believe they won't be fully compensated for land Foxconn Technology Group needs to build a $10 billion plant are appealing a ruling dismissing their case.

A dozen property owners filed a federal lawsuit in January alleging the village of Mount Pleasant's use of eminent domain is unconstitutional because it is for private rather than public benefit. They say the offers for their properties are too low.

The village is acquiring 18 acres (7 hectares) from landowners for the Foxconn complex. The lawsuit alleged the village was planning on to label some properties as blighted, which the property owners said would violate their Fifth Amendment rights.

Judge Lynn Adelman of the U.S. Eastern District of Wisconsin dismissed the suit this month, calling it "not cognizable".

"That defendants offered to pay some property owners substantially more than others to acquire their properties is hardly 'oppressive' in any actionable sense", Adelman wrote. "The facts alleged in the operative complaint do not come close to allowing me to infer that defendants violated it."

The property owners' attorney, Erik Olsen, filed the appeal Tuesday. The Journal Times reported The legal appeal won't stop the project, said Alan Marcuvitz, an attorney for the village.

"We do not believe there is any merit to this lawsuit, which was confirmed in the decision by the U.S. District Court, granting the village's motion to dismiss the case", Marcuvitz said in a statement. "We are confident that the Appeals Court will reach the same conclusion."

The Taiwanese company's plant will manufacture advanced liquid crystal display panels.


Trump turns focus to Wisconsin's races for Senate, governor
MADISON, Wis. (AP) - President Donald Trump makes a campaign visit to Wisconsin with Republicans growing increasingly nervous about the prospects of holding onto the governor's office, let alone picking up a Senate seat held by a well-positioned Democratic incumbent.

Trump on Wednesday will return to a rural part of the state he easily won by double digits in 2016. It is far from the conservative Milwaukee suburbs where his support is weaker, but it's in an area where Gov. Scott Walker and GOP Senate candidate Leah Vukmir will need to do well.

The question is whether Trump's presence in the tiny central Wisconsin city of Mosinee (population 4,000) will provide enough of a boost to energize Republican voters to matter for Walker and Vukmir less than two weeks before the election.

Vukmir is counting on it as she challenges Sen. Tammy Baldwin.

"These are the people we want to be sure to come out to vote", Vukmir said in an interview Tuesday.

Vukmir, who is from a conservative Milwaukee suburb in Waukesha County, said it was "far better" for Trump to campaign in central Wisconsin than her part of the state. Vukmir didn't do well in northern Wisconsin in her primary win, which was fueled by strong support in southeast Wisconsin. "This is the heart of Trump country", said Vukmir, who was campaigning in the area on Tuesday with Rep. Sean Duffy. "This is the part of the state, central Wisconsin and northern, that came through for him and advocates for him."

Trump won Wisconsin by less than 1 percentage point, but he carried the county where he's appearing Wednesday 56 percent to 38 percent. He won the mostly rural congressional district by 21 points - the widest margin of any congressional district in the state.

Getting out the GOP base in areas that went big for Trump will be important for both Vukmir and Walker. Polls show the race between Walker and Democratic challenger Tony Evers, the state schools superintendent, is a tossup. Baldwin, who is running for a second term, has consistently led Vukmir, a state senator, in fundraising and in polls. Walker on Tuesday released a new television ad attacking Evers over his support for in-state tuition for children of people living in the U.S. illegally and of issuing driver's licenses to immigrants here illegally. The spot ends with the line: "Tony Evers: special treatment for illegals, higher taxes for you." Evers decried the ad as a desperate move to mimic Trump, who has been using campaign rallies to increase his anti-immigrant rhetoric. Trump has a complicated history with both Walker and Vukmir. Walker ran against Trump for president, winning support from Vukmir and most other Wisconsin Republicans. Walker has since become a consistent Trump supporter, although not as vocal as Vukmir.

"My relationship with the president is straightforward", Walker said this month. "When he does things that are good for the state of Wisconsin, I praise him for it. When he does things I disagree with, that I think are detrimental to the state of Wisconsin, I call him up or the vice president up or call someone else and do something about it." Trump has put Walker in difficult positions, including when he called for a boycott of Milwaukee-based motorcycle-maker Harley-Davidson amid a tariff dispute. But Walker has stood with Trump on some of his most divisive policies, including supporting building the Mexico-U.S. border wall. He ran ads on Facebook in support of sending National Guard troops to defend the southern border.

Vukmir's GOP primary opponent called her loyalty to Trump into question after footage of Vukmir from 2016 emerged in which she said Trump is "offensive to everyone". Vukmir, who later was in a radio ad for Trump in the 2016 campaign, said there are no lingering questions about her support of Trump.

"Oh goodness, no", she said. "There weren't even questions back then. It was kind of silly."

As Trump heads to central Wisconsin, Democrats are focusing their efforts this week on Milwaukee, the state's largest city. Independent Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders attracted about 1,000 people to a Monday rally at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, while former President Barack Obama is holding an event in the city Friday. While the Trump visit is designed to excite the Republican base, Democrats say it's also galvanizing their supporters.

Trump's visit "just reinforces Walker's racist, sexist, xenophobic record", said Analiese Eicher, program director for the liberal group One Wisconsin Now. "It's doubling down on the policies that divide us."

The Wisconsin governor's race today is neck and 47 to 47 in Marquette Law School last poll before Nov. 06, 2018 election.

Nov. 01, 2018. Wisc. Gov. (R. Wisc.) Scott Walker through lying negative scare T.V. ads was able to erase his challenger (D. Wis.) Tony Evers' 5 points 49 to 44 poll lead.

The ads accused candidate Evers, of as state school superintendent of not firing a teacher child molester and as governor he would release from prison violent and dangerous offenders.


Walker lies! Invent his own facts! See below p.p. 2-3 and brazenly play the card, etc.

AP FACT CHECK: Walker embellishes return on Milwaukee arena
When Milwaukee's newest sports arena opened last month, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker promised that state taxpayers would earn a rich return on their investment in the $524 million Fiserv Forum, where NBA games will be played.

Walker championed the deal to help the Milwaukee Bucks owners build a new arena in 2015, when some criticized him for committing $203 million for the arena while trimming other parts of the state budget. The rest of the sports complex was paid for with private funds.

In a statement issued the day of Fiserv Forum's grand opening, Walker said the state will earn a nearly 3-to-1 return on the money spent for the arena.

A look at his claim:

WALKER: "The state is estimated to receive $2.99 for each dollar invested into building the new arena."

THE FACTS: In making his estimate, Walker omits some of the state money spent on the 20-year arena deal and relies on income tax estimates that experts call unreliable. Over the life of the deal, when interest is included on the bonds used to finance the Milwaukee Bucks arena project, it could cost state and local taxpayers as much as $377 million, according to a state legislative analysis. The state's share for constructing the arena is estimated to add up to $160 million, when interest is included, according to the same study.

For Wisconsin taxpayers to get $2.99 for every dollar spent on the arena - nearly triple the state's investment - the Bucks arena would need to generate $460 million in state tax revenues over the next two decades. But the governor sets the bar lower in his calculation. He only counts half of the state's investment - $80 million of it - and predicts the state will get $299 million in income taxes thanks to the arena. His math predicts taxpayers would actually get as much as $3.70 for every dollar spent. But Walker's office says the governor is using a more conservative estimate of a 3-to-1 return. What Walker leaves out is a second $80 million state contribution. His office says he did that because that money comes from a fund that distributes cash annually to Wisconsin counties. The state will deduct $4 million every year from its regular payment to Milwaukee County and dedicate that money to the arena instead. That adds up to $80 million over 20 years.

That part should be considered in Walker's calculation, said Allen Sanderson, a sports economist at the University of Chicago. "The money is money; it doesn't matter how you carve it out", Sanderson said. Economists also took issue with the tax revenue estimates Walker says the state will earn from the arena.

Walker bases his claim on 2015 tax collection projections from the Wisconsin Department of Revenue Secretary Richard Chandler, his office said.

Chandler estimated the state would collect $299 million in income taxes over 20 years because of the arena.

Using estimates from previous years, Chandler predicted that if the Bucks stayed in Milwaukee for the next two decades, the state would collect at least $130 million in income taxes from the Bucks and other NBA teams. (Athletes must pay income tax in any state where they play that collects such taxes.) He also predicted that NBA salaries would grow significantly over the next 20 years and the state would get an additional $169 million in NBA income tax collections during that same time. That adds up to $299 million.

So far, Chandler's estimates are on track. But multiple economists and sports salary experts who reviewed those estimates for The Associated Press warned that it's risky to predict salaries 20 years into the future. The league's salary cap may stay stagnant or increase for a variety of reasons from year to year, said NBA salary cap expert Larry Coon. For example, an NBA lockout in 2011 shortened the season and kept the salary cap flat the following year. But in 2016, the cap increased significantly thanks to the league's new TV deal.

The NBA itself, Coon pointed out, provides salary cap projections only for a few years in advance.

"There's enough variance over time that you can't project what will happen from one year to the next - there are too many confounding factors", Coon wrote in an email.

Thus the Koch Brothers group selected Walker for the White House in 2016 but N.Y. Trumpedo went instead.

See below, p.p.

Still though five of Walker's former cabinet members support Evers, and reports are the White House count him a loss. Walker must be BEAT Nov. 6, before he is ever counted out!

I pray Evers win!

O'Keefe claimed publicly releasing documents in the Wisconsin investigation would show that prosecutors were conducting a political witch hunt without any basis in the law. It didn't exactly turn out that way for Walker, did it?

Walker saw his political destruction coming a mile away. That's why a few weeks ago reports circulated that Walker's attorney was trying to negotiate a plea bargain to minimize the damage to Walker before November's election.

Incensed, The Wall Street Journal issued a direct order to Walker from his billionaire masters: Don't you dare settle this case!

Its editorial described the Walker John Doe as a rare opportunity to completely demolish campaign finance laws and berated Walker for wanting to cut it short:

"Mr. Walker is a hero to many for his fight against public unions, but he will tarnish that image if he sells out the cause for some short-term re-election reassurance."

So Walker apparently obediently dropped any attempted settlement and was almost immediately engulfed by the tsunami of damaging national publicity placing him at the center of a "criminal scheme".

Walker's only remaining defense was to lie shamelessly on Fox News, the only news venue that wouldn't challenge him with facts.

Walker pretended all those damaging accusations had already been disproven by favorable Wisconsin court decisions, including one by a federal judge. The case had been "resolved", Walker claimed. "No charges, case over."

Only in Walker's dreams. Everyone who knew anything about the case, including the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's Walker-friendly PolitiFact Wisconsin column, declared Walker's public assertions to be false.

The key federal court decision was a totally bizarre one by U.S. Judge Rudolph Randa, a member of the ultraconservative Federalist Society who regularly attends judicial "retreats" sponsored by the right-wing billionaire Koch brothers and the Bradley Foundation.

Randa not only ordered the investigation shut down but, incredibly, ordered evidence already collected to be destroyed.

That evidence would include the "smoking gun" email in which Walker boasted to Rove that his team, led by R.J. Johnson, working for both the Walker campaign and Wisconsin Club for Growth, was "wildly successful" in coordinating spending in nine recall races.

The Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in Chicago immediately blocked the destruction of evidence and could overturn Randa entirely any day now.

Meanwhile, Walker continues to slide down the voracious maw of the right-wing tiger.

Shepherd Express
June 26, 2014

All Koched Up

It's naive to believe in a golden age when money didn't matter in politics, but in the last few years, the cost of democracy has skyrocketed, the restrictions on campaign spending have been annulled and the big corporations have removed their gloves. In the Citizens United decision (2010), a case of what the right wing otherwise denounces as "judicial activism", the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that unrestricted election spending by corporations is a constitutional right. Koch Industries is just like you and me, the court decided. But we know better: Koch is worth billions and controls a big piece of the American economy. Even before Citizens United, the Koch brothers spent a fortune on media and political campaigns, seeking to remodel the U.S. according to their own fantasies. The pace has only accelerated.

As the documentary Citizen Koch shows over and over, David and Charles Koch aren't the only billionaires bent on controlling the country, but they are the prime movers. Wisconsin, once a progressive state, became a battleground and test case when the Kochs' favorite son, Scott Walker, pulled a fast one on voters and turned "reform" into union busting. Walker thwarted a grassroots campaign to recall him, outspending his opponents eight to one on the largesse of out-of-state donors.

Directors Tia Lessin and Carl Deal caught Walker on camera blandly discussing his scheme: destroy the state's labor movement by "divide and conquer", starting with public service unions, since many people hold vague resentments over workers paid with taxpayers' dollars. The mania to dismantle unions has a financial motive, since unions are a major source of funding for Democratic Party candidates. But running at a deeper level is a dark current of ideology. The Kochs' father was the racist anti-Communist paranoiac who co-founded the John Birch Society. Although the Koch-funded elements of the Tea Party parade the occasional African American in a show of diversity, Citizen Koch visits a Tea Party gathering during the Walker recall whose John Birch speaker blamed America's decline on the malign influence of Jews who fled Nazi Germany for America. Little wonder, given the clarity of such thinking, that the Tea Baggers shown in Citizen Koch can't decide whether Obama is a Fascist, a Socialist or a Communist. Of one thing they are certain: he's not an American.

Citizen Koch may be preaching to the choir, but its directors hope to win a few converts. They interview several genuinely conservative Republicans dismayed by the radical shift in their party, and follow the 2012 Republican presidential campaign of Buddy Roemer, a banker and former Louisiana governor who couldn't raise enough money to buy a seat in the GOP primary debates. Disgusted by the overweening power of corporate contributors, he quit the party.

Shepherd Express June 26, 2014

Unsealed John Doe documents detail the governor's criminal scheme

Republican Gov. Scott Walker may be arguing that the John Doe investigation into alleged illegal campaign coordination in 2011 and 2012 is dead as a doornail, but the 266 pages of unsealed court documents released last week showed the public what the bipartisan team of prosecutors has been investigating. According to the prosecutors, here are the main players in what they allege is a nationwide "criminal scheme":

* Scott Walker: The governor was at the hub of what prosecutors say was a national "criminal scheme" meant to subvert the nation's campaign finance laws. Walker not only raised funds for his own campaign, but also for the Wisconsin Club for Growth for "coordinated activities" organized by his longtime political advisor, R.J. Johnson. Prosecutors say Walker participated in conference calls about the 2011 and 2012 recall election strategy and bragged in an email to Karl Rove about their coordinated efforts.

* R.J. Johnson: This close political advisor to Walker also did double-duty for the Wisconsin Club for Growth and prosecutors say he was the conduit for the outside money. The national arm of the Club for Growth was concerned about Johnson's activities as far back as 2009, when he was also working for Walker's gubernatorial campaign. Johnson and his business partner Deb Jordahl also set up the phony issue ad group Citizens for a Strong America (CSA), which operated out of a post office box in Columbus, Wis. The Wisconsin Club for Growth spent $9.1 million on the recalls and poured $4.6 million into the CSA.

* Deborah Jordahl: This frequent guest on Charlie Sykes' show is Johnson's long-time business partner and together they set up CSA. R.J. Johnson and Associates paid her at [illegible] time she issued checks for the Wisconsin Club for Growth, prosecutors say.

* Wisconsin Club for Growth: The group and its director, Eric O'Keefe, are suing in federal court to stop the John Doe investigation, claiming that prosecutors are violating their civil rights. Conservative U.S. Judge Rudolph Randa shut down the investigation, but his order is being reviewed by the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago. Wisconsin Club for Growth spent $9.1 million on the recalls and allegedly served as the hub of the coordinated activities. R.J. Johnson claimed to have been in control of the group at the same time he was a paid political advisor to Walker.

* Kate Doner and Doner Fundraising: This Texas-based fundraising outfit specializes in conservative candidates and causes. Prosecutors say they were raising funds for Walker and the Wisconsin Club for Growth.

* Kelly Rindfleisch: Prosecutors say Rindfleisch was a fundraiser for both the Friends of Scott Walker and the Wisconsin Club for Growth. Rindfleisch was convicted of misconduct in public office in 2012 for raising funds for Republican lieutenant governor candidate Brett Davis in 2010 while working for Walker during his tenure as Milwaukee County Executive. She is appealing that conviction.

* Mary Stitt: Walker's longtime fundraiser who also worked as a fundraiser for Wisconsin Club for Growth, prosecutors say.

* Keith Gilkes: Walker's campaign manager served as his gubernatorial chief of staff through most of 2011, when prosecutors allege he was included in discussions involving coordination between several organizations. Gilkes was included in discussions about coordination in 2012, when he was managing Walker's campaign, prosecutors allege.

* Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce: The state's big-business lobby received $2.5 million from Wisconsin Club for Growth, which it deposited into the bank account of its political arm and used to pay for ads supporting Walker. Prosecutors say Walker participated in conference calls with WMC Senior Vice President James Buchen and others regarding the recall elections strategy.

* United Sportsmen of Wisconsin, Wisconsin Family Action and Wisconsin Right to Life: These groups received money from Johnson and Jordahl's Citizens for a Strong America, which prosecutors say was used for a deceptive absentee ballot scheme during the recalls.

* Republican State Leadership Committee: This national political group aims to elect Republicans in statehouses across the country and allegedly was part of the right-wing recall network. It launched REDMAP to elect Republicans in the 2010 elections and draw GOP-friendly legislative maps as part of the once-a-decade redistricting process.

* Allied Groups: Prosecutors argue that Walker's "criminal scheme" included "open and express discussions of the need to coordinate the activities" of likeminded groups, which began in March 2011. Among the prosecutors' targeted groups are the Koch brothers' Americans for Prosperity, Club for Growth, Republican Party of Wisconsin, Republican State Leadership Committee and the Republican Governors Association.

Right-Wing Tiger Eats Scott Walker

President John F. Kennedy warned emerging leaders about turning to political tyranny, saying: "Those who foolishly sought power by riding the back of the tiger ended up inside."

Washington Post columnist E. J. Dionne recently applied it to cast away House Majority leader Eric Cantor who aided and abetted the extremist tea party takeover of the Republican Party until it devoured him.

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker could be the next to disappear down the gullet of the vicious beast.

It seems like a Wisconsin Democrat's fondest dream: Headlines all across the country reporting accusations by prosecutors that Walker directed a vast "criminal scheme" illegally coordinating millions of dollars from outside groups benefiting himself and his political allies.

The juiciest tidbit: Evidence supporting the accusations includes a personal email from Walker to right-wing political operative Karl Rove bragging about the success of the alleged conspiracy.

But here's the amazing part you need to know. It wasn't Democrats who were behind the public release of those damaging documents Time magazine says have now put Walker's political career "in the political equivalent of critical condition."

It was right-wing Republicans.

The John Doe investigation into the coordination between the Walker campaign and 12 supposedly independent right-wing groups is usually secret since it uncovers evidence before any charges are filed.

But it was Eric O'Keefe, director of Wisconsin Club for Growth, the right-wing organization prosecutors say was the "hub" for distribution of millions of dollars, ho first brought the secret John Doe into the public eye.

O'Keefe publicly identified himself as a target of the secret investigation in The Wall Street Journal and filed a lawsuit to try to shut down the investigation as a violation of his organization's free speech rights.

To understand why, you have to understand the role of The Wall Street Journal in right-wing politics today.



The Wall Street Journal, the daily bible of American business, has long been recognized for the quality of its journalism. It still is.

But since The Wall Street Journal was acquired in 2007 by right-wing billionaire Rupert Murdoch, the ethically challenged owner of Fox News and other sleazy tabloid operations worldwide, its editorial pages have become the personal lobby of the right-wing billionaires financing today's ever-more-extreme Republican Party.

The Wall Street Journal and organizations like Club for Growth want to use the Walker John Doe as a vehicle for the Supreme Court to extend its horrendous Citizens United decision to eliminate all regulations against candidates controlling millions of dollars from outside political groups who don't have to disclose their donors.

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
March 5, 2014

In-custody death bill has Barrett's support
City Hall clarifies that after Tobin's remarks to panel


Milwaukee City Hall is distancing itself from comments made by the executive director of the city's Fire and Police Commission regarding a bill that would end the long-standing practice of allowing police departments to investigate themselves when people die in custody.

The bill is scheduled for a vote Thursday by the Senate Committee on Transportation, Public Safety, and Veterans and Military Affairs.

It was prompted by the deaths of Paul Heenan, fatally shot by a Madison police officer outside his home last year; Derek Williams, who died after begging for help and gasping for breath in the back of a Milwaukee police squad car in 2011; and Michael Bell, shot in the head at close range by Kenosha police in his family's driveway in 2004.

All three men were unarmed.

During a public hearing last week, Michael Tobin, the commission's executive director, criticized the bill, saying that outside agencies investigating the deaths would be less accountable and noting that the bill exempted deaths in county jails and state prisons from outside scrutiny.

Under existing law, deaths in county jails already are investigated by the state Department of Corrections.

The new law would apply to other deaths in the custody of sheriff's departments, such as shootings or traffic accidents.

The bill's author, Rep. Garey Bies (R-Sister Bay), said Tobin sounded "strongly against the bill."

The day after Tobin's testimony, Milwaukee's director of intergovernmental relations, Jennifer Gonda Birnbaum, sent an email to committee members about "some confusion" related to Tobin's testimony.

"I would like to clarify that the City of Milwaukee and Mayor Barrett do not oppose this bill", she wrote. "Any statements to the contrary made by Mr. Tobin at committee yesterday were of his own opinion."

The mayor supports transparency and accountability, and would support the bill's expansion to cover all deaths in custody of all law enforcement, not just police officers, she wrote.

The mayor's "only concern is that these types of policies get applied consistently in all types of law enforcement", Birnbaum said in an interview Tuesday.

Asked about the controversy Tuesday, Tobin emailed this statement:

"Increasing community trust in the police department is a primary goal of everyone involved in this legislation. We have taken important steps forward in Milwaukee over the past few years to improve the process and ensure that a fair, objective, and thorough investigation is conducted. In Milwaukee we have taken significant steps in our city to improve the investigation and review process when a critical incident occurs. We will continue to improve our process, because better accountability of the police department leads to improved community trust and that is a goal that I think everyone can agree with."

The custody death bill would require a team of at least two investigators from an outside agency to lead investigations into such deaths.

The bill also would require reports of custody death investigations throughout the state to be released to the public if criminal charges are not filed against the officers involved.

A Milwaukee Journal Sentinel investigation of in-custody deaths in Milwaukee County over a five-year period found that while those reviews are labeled as "independent", pathologists, prosecutors and law enforcement rely on one another's conclusions - even when those conclusions are flawed - ensuring no one is held accountable when prisoners die.

The good Walker vs. the evil Walker
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
Christian Schneider
The upcoming November election appears almost exclusively to be a race between those two governors.

March 30, 2014

In 19th-century literature, one of the most common plot devices utilized was that of the "fetch" - the idea that a man can really be two men at once, with one often tormenting the other. In Fyodor Dostoyevsky's "The Double", a mild-mannered government clerk descends into madness when confronted by his vain, confident doppelganger.

Robert Louis Stevenson, who often used his literature to explore facets of split personality disorder, wrote one of the genre's most famous works with his novella, "Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde". More recently, the "double" device has been utilized in the films of Alfred Hitchcock and modern thrillers such as "Fight Club".

In a nod to Victorian-era literature, the results of the Marquette University Law School poll released last week suggest that Wisconsin is being led by two completely different governors. The two Scott Walkers aren't his own internal construct; instead, they are found in the views of the people who have elected him twice.

According to the poll, 49% of Wisconsin's citizens view Walker favorably, while 47% view him unfavorably. Of those polled, 47% think he's doing a good job, while 47% disapprove of his performance.

A split like that in politics is fairly unique. For one thing, hardly anyone in the state doesn't have an opinion about how Walker has steered the state over the past three years. Just about everyone knows him and is willing to tell you what they think about how he's doing.

Further, Walker's numbers have been virtually set in stone since just before the June 2012 recall election that saw him win for the second time in two years. Nobody's moving; the pro- and anti-Walker sides have dug their trenches and appear to be locked in a standoff. Despite his seven percentage point lead over Democratic challenger Mary Burke, Walker splits the state right down the middle when citizens judge him personally.

For half the state, Wisconsin is being run by a man of conviction who has pulled the state from the brink of bankruptcy. Three years ago, this governor stared down the powerful public-sector unions, enduring endless abuse from spoiled teachers who have lived the good life on the taxpayer dime for too long.

This governor has used the budget surpluses he created to cut taxes by billions of dollars, allowing citizens to keep their own hard-earned money. He has brought integrity to elections by signing a bill requiring voters to present photo identification to cast a ballot. Under his watch, the state has record levels of individuals with health insurance, and he achieved this feat without accepting federal Medicaid expansion money.

Yet that governor is competing with the other governor. The one who is a tool of the billionaire Koch brothers, who runs around the country attending fundraisers to further his national political profile. This governor used his "divide and conquer" strategy to rip apart the state, pitting relatives against one another and destroying the unions' God-given right to organize. This governor's shady dealings involve having staffers commit crimes under his watch, which has led to multiple secret criminal investigations. He has fallen well short of his promise to create jobs and has signed laws that disenfranchise minority voters, allow dangerous people to carry guns and ensure women can never make as much money as men.

The upcoming November election seems almost exclusively to be a race between the two governors. Burke seems superfluous at this point; she is merely the avatar for the "anybody but Walker" crowd. The real challenge to good Walker is being waged by evil Walker; his opponents need to convince voters that the latter is running the state, as opposed to the former. The 2014 election is a referendum exclusively on the two incumbents.

There exists a superstition among many cultures that if someone meets his or her fetch, it is a sign that death is approaching. But Walker's duality actually seems to be feeding his rise to national prominence. Republican presidential voters see the extent to which good Walker's opponents vilify him, and it makes him appear like the kind of strong stock that makes for a good chief executive.

Rather than damaging his image, Democrats have turned Walker into a national star. And if good Walker wins in 2014, voters around the country may be seeing a lot more of both of him.

What Ryan could learn about race
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
Eugene Kane
Ryan's 'inarticulate' comments will follow him.
March 30, 2014

Rep. Paul Ryan's "inarticulate" comments on inner city poverty likely will follow him no matter what political path he chooses in the coming years.

That's what happens when a potential presidential candidate puts his foot in his mouth talking about a subject many believe he doesn't understand.

After making some extreme remarks about the kind of people who live in inner city America on a conservative radio talk show, Ryan's status as the leading intellectual in the GOP took a beating from those who accused him of making overly broad assumptions about a community with which he has little experience.

His actual words to host Bill Bennett:

"We have got this tailspin of culture, in our inner cities in particular, of men not working and just generations of men not even thinking about working or learning to value the culture of work."

Doubling down on his insights into the lives of the poor, Ryan even referenced conservative author Charles Murray, author of "The Bell Curve", a book that has been denounced for its offensive views on race and class in America.

Ryan was rightly criticized for his statements on Bennett's show, and the Wisconsin congressman later apologized to anyone offended by claiming his words weren't meant to be racist but were "inarticulate".

To be fair, the essence of what Ryan said wasn't really that different from what others - black and white - have said in the past to describe the dysfunction in some parts of black America. What was striking was the sense Ryan was using the interview to buttress his qualifications to run for national office in a few years.

When a presidential candidate starts addressing inner city poverty and points the finger of blame squarely at the people living in the inner cities, that begins to sound like an ominous campaign slogan for some folks.

When he does it in a way that leaves no doubt he's talking about African-Americans in major cities such as Detroit, Chicago, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Los Angeles and, yes, Milwaukee, that's an even bigger problem.

Some call it "dog whistle" politics, i.e. talking about race without really mentioning it. If you believe Ryan knew exactly what he was doing - and I do - it's a troubling view of the baby-faced conservative star who has been accused in the past of letting his political ambitions override his sense of fairness.

The infuriating part for black Milwaukeeans who have followed Ryan's career is the knowledge that this is a guy who doesn't have deep connections with enough African-Americans in the inner city to be able to presume what generations of their families have been doing for decades.

Apparently, Ryan did visit some poor communities in Milwaukee and elsewhere last year as part of his "research" for his policy paper on poverty. From his remarks, he clearly didn't stay long enough to see beyond the stereotypes.

Some readers insist Ryan is being attacked by blacks and liberals for simply telling the truth. Well, if you go solely by his words, it's easy to prove his remarks were not based on any empirical facts or research. To say there's a "tailspin of culture in our inner cities in particular" (wink, wink) suggests that rural and suburban communities suffering from the same levels of poverty, joblessness and homelessness are immune from the same symptoms.

When he talks about "generations of men who don't even think about working to make a living", that's a sign he has no clue about the "hustling" mentality in many inner cities where unemployed young black males are constantly working to make money, many times working in the black market or selling drugs.

Granted, some of that is criminal behavior, but that's partly due to a lack of jobs in the inner city that pay a fair wage.

If Ryan really wanted to do some real research on poverty, he should stop reading Murray and read respected social scientist William Julius Wilson ("When Work Disappears: The World of the New Urban Poor") or Elijah Anderson ("Against the Wall: Poor Young Black and Male"), two acclaimed African-American authors who have written books on inner city poverty from various perspectives.

After a meeting with a black congresswoman who criticized his remarks on poverty last week, Ryan declared, "I don't have a racist bone in my body."

But he misses the point. Racism doesn't exist in your bones. It's in your mind.

6 inmates hospitalized; jimson weed suspected

Six inmates at the Rock County Jail were taken to a hospital after jail officials suspected they had ingested jimson weed, the sheriff's office said Tuesday.

Staff at the jail became aware of the situation about 11 a.m. Monday when one of the inmates began acting strangely, according to a sheriff's office news release.

Jimson weed is a poisonous wildflower that can cause hallucinations.

Fort Hood gunman kills 3, injures 16

Soldier kills self after opening fire at same base where 13 were killed in 2009

Legislators urge Kramer to quit
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
Vos says Assembly may consider expelling lawmaker over sex case

Madison - Disgraced state Rep. Bill Kramer should resign or his fellow lawmakers will have to consider making him the first Wisconsin lawmaker to be expelled from office in nearly 100 years, two of the Legislature's top leaders said Saturday.

Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R-Rochester) said that he found the criminal sexual assault charges filed against the Waukesha Republican on Friday to be credible, and that he was disturbed by the former Assembly majority leader's seemingly flippant reaction to them.

[Bill Kramer Photo from Muskego police]

"Bill Kramer should do the honorable thing and resign", Vos said. "When I read the report filed by the (police and prosecutors), it didn't seem to me like [...]

Posted by Brendan Fischer on June 17, 2014/The ALEC Angle in Scott Walker's "Toxic Strain of Racial Politics"
World Cup * Politics * Culture * Magazine

The Unelectable Whiteness of Scott Walker -
A journey through the poisonous, racially divided world that produced a Republican star

Scott Walker's political success in Wisconsin is attributable to "a toxic strain of racial politics", the New Republic argues this month in a front-page article. But Walker has long backed policies that have a disproportionate impact on people of color, particularly the harsh sentencing laws he pushed as a member of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) that have contributed to Wisconsin's worst-in-the-country record of racial disparities in incarceration.

The thesis of the New Republic piece -- which most right-wing bloggers seem to have missed -- is not that Walker necessarily has personal animus towards people of color, but that his political success is largely attributable to deep support in the overwhelmingly white suburbs surrounding Milwaukee and from the polarizing talk radio hosts that hold sway in those enclaves. This might win elections in the Dairy State, but may not be a recipe for success on a national stage, the New Republic argues.

The piece doesn't focus on Walker's record of pushing policies that have disproportionately impacted people of color. But that record exists.

Most notably, as a state legislator and ALEC member in the 1990s, Walker pushed ALEC-inspired tough-on-crime measures that experts say contributed to Wisconsin having the country's highest rate of African-American men behind bars. As governor, he has eliminated programs designed to track and remedy these disparities, and rolled-back efforts to soften harsh sentencing laws, even as sentencing reform gains bipartisan support across the country.

Nationally, the incarceration rate for African-American men is 6.7 percent, but it is nearly double in Wisconsin, at 13 percent. This rate is three percentage points higher than in Oklahoma, the state in second place. According to recent data, African-American men are only 6% of Wisconsin's overall population but 48% of the state's prison population.

These complex disparities don't have a single cause, but criminal justice experts say that tough sentencing laws passed in the late 1990s -- with Walker's backing -- have been a significant contributing factor.

"The explosion really took place in the year 2000 to 2008 where mandatory sentencing, three strikes was put in place and it more than tripled the population in just a few years, which meant about half the black men in their 30s or early 40s in Milwaukee County would have spent time in the state's correctional facilities. And two-thirds of the men come from the six poorest zip codes in Milwaukee", University of Wisconsin Professor John Pawasarat told National Public Radio.

Walker: "Clearly ALEC had proposed model legislation" on Truth-in-Sentencing

In 1997, then-Representative Walker introduced (and the legislature passed) the ALEC "Truth-in-Sentencing Act" which limits opportunities for parole or supervised release.

"Clearly ALEC had proposed [Truth-in-Sentencing] model legislation", Walker told American Radio Works in 2002, even though there was no mention of ALEC when the legislature was considering the bill. ALEC also promoted three strikes laws throughout the 1990s.

Members of the ALEC Criminal Justice Task Force at the time included for-profit prison providers like Corrections Corporation of America (CCA), which stood to profit from ALEC bills that lengthen sentences and privatize prisons. (See this graphic from American Radio Works explaining the CCA-ALEC-Wisconsin sentencing law connection).

Walker said he took into account the fact that CCA and other ALEC members could make money from the truth-in-sentencing bill.

"Oftentimes that's your greatest challenge, as a legislator, is trying to weed through what everybody's hidden agenda is, and figure out who's giving you credible information and in many cases playing one interest off of another to try and figure out what the truth is. More information to me is better", Walker said.

"Probably more important than just the model legislation, [ALEC] had actually put together reports and such that showed the benefits of Truth-in-Sentencing and showed the successes in other states. And those sorts of statistics were very helpful to us when we pushed it through, when we passed the final legislation", he said in the 2001 interview.

The ALEC statistics Walker relied on, though -- and that he repeated in op-eds -- were critiqued by criminologists as unreliable, and intended to persuade rather than educate. The ALEC report credited Virginia's Truth-in-Sentencing law with a five-year drop in crime, but crime dropped in all states in the 1990s, regardless of whether a state passed a tough-on-crime law like Truth-in-Sentencing.

The actual statistics following the implementation of truth-in-sentencing and other tough sentencing laws in Wisconsin have not been good.

Neighboring Minnesota has a similar crime rate to Wisconsin and similar demographics, but thanks in part to Walker's harsh sentencing law, Wisconsin has two-and-a-half times as many people in prison. Minnesota has more people on parole or in community-based corrections, and because those alternative approaches cost twenty times less than incarceration, Minnesota spends significantly less than Wisconsin on corrections. And, Minnesota locks up far fewer African-American men than Wisconsin: 5.8 percent in Minnesota versus 13 percent in Wisconsin.

"It Only Makes Sense" That Wisconsin Privatize Prisons

Wisconsin's prison population increased 14 percent in the seven years after the Walker-ALEC truth-in-sentencing law was implemented, with no correlative public safety benefit and no additional decline in crime rates.

But Rep. Walker, the head of the Assembly's committee on prisons, had a plan for the exploding prison population. As Steven Elbow of the Capital Times wrote in 1999:

Rep. Scott Walker sees the future for Wisconsin's overburdened prison system, and it doesn't involve a massive building campaign by the state.

Instead, Walker, R-Wauwatosa, the chairman of the Assembly Committee on Corrections and the Courts, envisions a landscape dotted with shiny new corrections facilities, built and operated by private companies.

And he's introduced a pair of bills that would pave the way.

One of Walker's bills would have handed over control of state prison operations to for-profit prison companies. See the ALEC bill that would do just that, here.

The other would have allowed for-profit operators to open prisons in Wisconsin to house inmates from other states. See the ALEC bill here.

"It only makes sense that we allow a private firm to build and operate an accredited facility in our state", he said, noting that both CCA and Wackenhut Corrections (now GEO Group) wanted to expand into Wisconsin.

Although Walker's bills did not pass, some inmates were contracted-out to private prisons in other states, and CCA has registered lobbyists in the state ever since.

(Meanwhile, in 2010, after reports about CCA benefitting from Arizona's controversial anti-immigrant SB1070 law -- which was voted on by ALEC corporations and politicians before it was introduced in Arizona -- the private prison industry sought to distance itself from ALEC.)

After Becoming Governor, Walker Reversed Progress, Restored Tough-On-Crime Agenda

In recent years sentencing reform has become a bipartisan issue (just as tough sentencing laws were pushed by both Republicans and Democrats in the 1990s). Likely Republican presidential candidate Rand Paul, for example, has called for changes to federal mandatory sentencing laws, pointing out that the laws disproportionately impact people of color and comparing tough sentencing requirements to Jim Crow.

(ALEC also has a rebranded "Justice Performance Project" task force focused on criminal justice reform, but has done nothing to acknowledge its role in spreading harsh sentencing laws and prison privatization or to promote the repeal of its old bills. Plus, some of its efforts to replace incarceration with supervised release are likely to benefit ALEC members like the for-profit bail bond industry and other corporate funders.) After Walker left the Assembly in 2002 to become Milwaukee County Executive, the state legislature began rolling-back his truth-in-sentencing law.

But when Walker entered the governor's office in 2011, he reversed this progress and pushed for legislation fully restoring the ALEC truth-in-sentencing requirements, despite the costs to taxpayers associated with incarcerating more prisoners for more time (approximately $32,000 each year) and despite claiming Wisconsin was "broke".

During Walker's tenure as governor the percentage of inmates granted parole has plummeted. Walker has also not granted a single pardon.

As governor, Walker also eliminated funding for the state's first program to track and remedy Wisconsin's worst-in-the-country rate of racial disparities in the criminal justice system. That program was aimed at tracking possible racial profiling during traffic stops, and had only taken effect in January 2011, when Walker took office. It was part of the implementation of recommendations first made in 1999 by a task force on racial profiling appointed by Republican Governor Tommy Thompson, and reiterated in 2008 by a Democrat-appointed commission.

State Bar President James C. Boll, Jr., said at the time "[t]he data collection just began this year. At best, to repeal this requirement now would signal that the Legislature has concluded, without any empirical basis, that racial profiling does not exist in Wisconsin or is not a significant problem." Walker has also pushed other policies as governor that disproportionately impact people of color.

Soon after taking office he eliminated in-state tuition for undocumented Wisconsin students attending state universities, a policy that even Republican governors like Rick Perry in Texas and Rick Scott in Florida have championed. Walker eliminated eligibility for medical assistance and foodshare for legal immigrants in the state. He rejected Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act, which would have largely benefitted people of color in Wisconsin. He pushed strict voter ID restrictions, even vowing to call a special session to restore the law after courts struck it down as discriminatory.

None of this is to say Walker himself is a bigot. But what the New Republic describes "the insularity of his worldview" -- and the "toxic strain of politics" that gave rise to his political career -- has certainly had an impact outside of the white suburban and rural enclaves that elected him to office.

Trump stokes pre-election fear of immigrants to drive votes

WASHINGTON (AP) - Thousands of U.S. troops to stop an "invasion" of migrants. Tent cities for asylum seekers. An end to the Constitution's guarantee of birthright citizenship.

With his eyes squarely on next Tuesday's elections, President Donald Trump is rushing out hardline immigration declarations, promises and actions as he tries to mobilize supporters to retain Republican control of Congress. His own campaign in 2016 concentrated on border fears, and that's his final-week focus in the midterm fight. "This has nothing to do with elections", the president insists. But his timing is striking. Trump says he will send more than 5,000 military troops to the Mexican border to help defend against caravans of Central American migrants who are on foot and still hundreds of miles away. Tent cities would not resolve the massive backlog of asylum seekers. And most legal scholars say it would take a new constitutional amendment to alter the current one granting citizenship to anyone born in America. Still, Trump plunges ahead with daily alarms and proclamations about immigration in tweets, interviews and policy announcements in the days leading up to elections that Democrats hope will give them at least partial control of Congress.

Trump and many top aides have long seen the immigration issue as the most effective rallying cry for his base of supporters. The president had been expected to make an announcement about new actions at the border on Tuesday, but that was scrapped so he could travel instead to Pittsburgh, where 11 people were massacred in a synagogue during Sabbath services.

Between the shootings, the deadliest attack on Jews in U.S. history, and the mail bomb scare targeting Democrats and a media organization, the caravan of migrants slowly trudging north had faded from front pages and cable TV.

But with well-timed interviews on Fox and "Axios on HBO", Trump revived some of his hardest-line immigration ideas:

- An executive order to revoke the right to citizenship for babies born to non-U.S. citizens on American soil.

- And the prolonged detention of anyone coming across the U.S.-Mexico border, including those seeking asylum, in "tent cities" erected "all over the place". The administration on Monday also announced plans to deploy 5,200 active duty troops - more than double the 2,000 who are in Syria fighting the Islamic State group - to the border to help stave off the caravans.

The main caravan, still in southern Mexico, was continuing to melt away - from the original 7,000 to about 4,000 - as a smaller group apparently hoped to join it.

Trump insists his immigration moves have nothing to do with politics, even as he rails against the caravans at campaign rallies. "I've been saying this long before the election. I've been saying this before I ever thought of running for office. We have to have strong borders", Trump told Fox News host Laura Ingraham in an interview Monday.

Critics weren't buying it.

"They're playing all of us", said David W. Leopold, an immigration attorney and counsel to the immigration advocacy group America's Voice. "This is not about locking people up. This is not about birthright citizenship. This is about winning an election next week."

Trump's citizenship proposal would inevitably spark a long-shot legal battle over whether the president can alter the long-accepted understanding that the 14th Amendment grants citizenship to any child born on U.S. soil, regardless of his parents' immigration status.

Omar Jadwat, director of the Immigrants' Rights Project at the American Civil Liberties Union in New York, said the Constitution is very clear.

"If you are born in the United States, you're a citizen", he said. He called it "outrageous" that the president can think he can override constitutional guarantees by issuing an executive order.

James Ho, a conservative Trump-appointed federal appeals court judge, wrote in 2006, before his appointment, that birthright citizenship "is protected no less for children of undocumented persons than for descendants of Mayflower passengers". Even House Speaker Paul Ryan, typically a supporter of Trump proposals, said on WVLK radio in Kentucky: "Well you obviously cannot do that. You cannot end birthright citizenship with an executive order."

But Trump says his lawyers have assured him that the change could be made with "just with an executive order" - an argument he has been making since his early days as candidate, when he dubbed birthright citizenship a "magnet for illegal immigration" and pledged to end it. "We're the only country in the world where a person comes in and has a baby, and the baby is essentially a citizen of the United States", he said in an Axios interview excerpt released Tuesday.

Not so, according to a 2010 study from the Center for Immigration Studies, a group that supports immigration restrictions, which said at least 30 countries offer birthright citizenship.

Vice President Mike Pence said the administration was "looking at action that would reconsider birthright citizenship."

"We all know what the 14th Amendment says. We all cherish the language of the 14th Amendment. But the Supreme Court of the United States has never ruled on whether or not - whether the language of the 14th Amendment, 'subject to the jurisdiction thereof', applies specifically to the people who are in the country illegally", he said at a Politico event.

The nonpartisan Migration Policy Institute estimates that more than 4 million U.S.-born children under the age of 18 have an unauthorized immigrant parent.

A person familiar with the internal White House debate said the topic of birthright citizenship has come up inside the West Wing at various times - and not without some detractors. However, White House lawyers expect to work with the Justice Department to develop a legal justification for the action. The person was not authorized to discuss the policy debate so spoke on condition of anonymity.

In Trump's Monday interview with Fox, he said the U.S. also plans to build tent cities to house migrants seeking asylum, who would be detained until their cases were completed. Right now, some asylum seekers, particularly families, are being released as their cases progress because there isn't enough detention space to house them.

"We're going to put tents up all over the place", Trump said. "They're going to be very nice, and they're going to wait, and if they don't get asylum they get out."

The country is facing a massive backlog of immigration cases - some 700,000 - and there are more and more families coming across the border from Central America - groups who cannot be simply returned over the border. But experts question the legality and practicality of what would amount to indefinite detention.

The options are just two of many possibilities currently under discussion, including asylum law changes and simply barring members of the migrant caravan from entering the country using the same mechanism as the president's much-publicized travel ban for people from certain Muslim countries. Administration officials say decisions are unlikely until after the midterm elections, in part because of the synagogue shooting and pipe-bomb scare.

But some supporters in Congress are rushing to cheer Trump on.

GOP Rep. Steve King of Iowa, who has introduced legislation to end birthright citizenship, said Trump was deftly seizing on an issue that was sure to help in the midterms.

"That ability to move on instinct without hesitation, that's why he's president", King said.

Okinawa leader wants Americans to stop U.S. base

TOKYO (AP) - The bicultural, newly elected governor of the southern Japanese island of Okinawa plans to visit the United States with a message to the American people: Stop building a disputed military base and build peace instead.

Tamaki took office Oct. 4 after campaigning for a disputed U.S. Marine air base to be moved off the island and for the American military presence on Okinawa to be reduced. The small island hosts about half of the 54,000 American troops stationed in Japan and accounts for 64 percent of the land used for U.S. military bases.

Tamaki plans to visit New York and other U.S. cities in November, although dates and other details are not yet decided, according to the governor's office.

"I want the American people to understand what has been, what is and what will be, to solve this problem", Denny Tamaki told The Associated Press in an interview Wednesday at the Tokyo office for Okinawa prefecture. Tamaki, 59, is the first person with an American parent to lead Okinawa, and he stressed that his bicultural roots make him perfect to relay a message to the U.S. public. His father is a U.S. Marine he has never met. His mother, who raised him on Okinawa, burned all his father's letters and photos, Tamaki recalled.

But he would like to meet his father in the U.S. and hug him, he added.

"I'd like to say, 'Hi, dad. How've you been?'" he said in English and Japanese, adding jokingly perhaps 100 people might come forward.

He acknowledged he was not sure what he thought of the overall policy stances of President Donald Trump. A meeting with Trump is not on the trip agenda.

Tamaki said although Trump appeared to take a negative view toward Asia on trade, his gestures of reconciliation with North Korea, including a summit earlier this year with leader Kim Jong Un, showed Trump was committed to pursuing regional peace. "I would like to make it a win-win situation", for Trump and Okinawa, said Tamaki, friendly and relaxed in the office filled with lion statues and woven tropical fabric. Tamaki, who had a radio show before becoming a parliamentary lawmaker in 2009, said he was all for the U.S.-Japan bilateral security treaty, signed after Japan's defeat in World War II. He is also not opposed to Japan's having troops for self-defense, he said.

But Japanese people need to understand and talk more about security issues, defense spending and the unfair burden on Okinawa of hosting U.S. troops, he added. Okinawa's demands must be coordinated with the overall American plan to relocate U.S. Marines in the Pacific, Tamaki said. At the center of contention is relocating a U.S. air base from densely populated Futenma in Okinawa to less-crowded Henoko on its east cost. Early construction has begun at Henoko, but it's far from finished. The U.S. and Japan's central government support the relocation, and government ministries have rejected Okinawa's legal maneuvers to block the construction.

"The people of Okinawa have opposed this new base for more than two decades and so there is a basic mistake in Henoko" because the democratic process is being ignored, Tamaki said.

"We believe the Japanese government should assert that view to the American government, not keep insisting that Henoko is the only solution."

Although much of world, including mainstream Japanese media and the public, have tended to overlook the complaints from Okinawa, Tamaki's rise has brought attention to the historical dilemma with an undeniable clarity.

Okinawa continued to be occupied by the U.S. after the rest of Japan regained sovereignty in 1952, and was officially returned to Japan only in 1972. Okinawa was also where one of the bloodiest land battles of World War II was fought.

After the war, crimes by members of the U.S. military, including vehicle hit-and-runs and rapes, have outraged the people of Okinawa. The planning for Henoko dates to a 1995 rape of a schoolgirl in which three American servicemen were convicted. Citizens are also angry about noise pollution and the dangers of accidents involving military aircraft. Tamaki said he stood for Okinawa's culture,history and voice, noting his biracial makeup was common in Okinawa, where diversity was an asset as well as a vision for the future. "There are many people like me", he said, adding that he wanted to build a peaceful, prosperous and gentle society. "Okinawa is a place where people have a spirit of sharing, and that is an important part of my identity."

He repeatedly stressed that Okinawa, as a part of Japan, can't set national policy on its own, only prod the central government and the U.S. to listen. But when asked if he was interested in becoming Japan's prime minister, he agreed without hesitation. "If people want it", he said.

He said he hadn't even initially imagined he would become a politician at all.

When asked how he had changed since he became governor, he searched for an answer. He still plays in a band, singing mostly rock and playing guitar, and his love for Eric Clapton hadn't changed, he said, and so maybe he hadn't changed that much. But perhaps his new role was building more patience into his character.

"Maybe I grew up a little bit", he said with a smile.

Pittsburgh funerals continue after Trump visit and protests


PITTSBURGH (AP) - Members of Pittsburgh's grief-stricken Jewish community braced for another round of funerals Wednesday for victims of the synagogue massacre, a day after President Donald Trump encountered hundreds of protesters when he came to town to pay his respects. Melvin Wax, 87, Irving Younger, 69, and Joyce Fienberg, 75, were to be laid to rest as part of a weeklong series of services for the 11 people killed in a shooting rampage at the Tree of Life synagogue Saturday. It was the deadliest attack on Jews in U.S. history.

Pittsburgh began burying its dead on Tuesday, with thousands of mourners jamming a synagogue, a Jewish community center and a third, undisclosed site for the funerals of a beloved family doctor, a pillar of the congregation, and two intellectually disabled brothers in their 50s who were known as "the boys".

Cecil and David Rosenthal were "beautiful souls" who had "not an ounce of hate in them - something we're terribly missing today", Rabbi Jeffrey Myers, a survivor of the massacre, said at their funeral at Rodef Shalom, one of the city's oldest and largest synagogues.

The brothers were both active at Tree of Life, with Cecil the more gregarious of the two, a man with a booming voice who was known as the "mayor" of the city's Squirrel Hill neighborhood and the "town crier" for the gossip he managed to gather.

"They were innocent little boys, not hardened like men", the Rosenthals' sister, Diane Hirt, told mourners.

With Tree of Life still cordoned off as a crime scene, the man arrested in the attack, 46-year-old truck driver Robert Gregory Bowers, was behind bars, awaiting a hearing Thursday on federal hate-crime charges that could bring the death penalty. Authorities said he raged against Jews during the rampage.

On Tuesday afternoon, after the day's funerals were over, Trump and first lady Melania Trump arrived in Pittsburgh to shouting, chanting protesters with signs such as "It's your fault" and "Words matter", a reference to allegations that Trump's combative language has emboldened bigots. Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf and Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto, both Democrats, declined to join him during the visit.

"He didn't pull the trigger, but his verbiage and actions don't help", said Squirrel Hill resident Paul Carberry, 55, wearing anti-Trump patches on his hat and jacket. But another Squirrel Hill resident, Shayna Marcus, a Jewish 34-year-old nurse and Trump supporter who hoped to catch sight of the presidential motorcade, said: "I don't think focusing on Trump is the answer, or on politics."

One person was arrested during the protests. During their visit, Trump and the first lady lit candles at Tree of Life for the victims and [...]

At Gov. Scott Walker's official public re-election announcement 11-6-2017, Mon. 4:30 p.m. CT

"Biggest applauds"!!!

"ISO supporters" given "biggest applauds" when governor talked about "welfare drug testing"...

Nov. 01, 2018

Today following last Wed. political trip to Wisc. to campaign Walker etc. President Trumpedo gave Walker a waiver to mandate state Medicaid requirement of 80 hours a month of work c for a single parent. 10-31-2018

Republicans win through exploiting the poor! Dividing the races and stealing the votes. 11-01-2018

Public assistance program Food Share

Handicap persons must work for food...

Source: NPR This Morning 10-11-2017 Wed. 6 a.m. CT.

Drug testing medicine recipient

Gov. (R. Wis) Walker petitioned the federal government for waiver so to allow the state to drug test Medicaid recipients?

Source: Time 4-18-2017, Tues. 3 p.m. CT.

Public housing residents to be drug tested...

See Capital City Sunday 02-25-2018

Gov. (R. WI) Scott Walker meanie bag of "dirty tricks!!! To stay in power!!!

To enact: "restrictive welfare reform" (TV 27 Madison)
2-20-2018 Tues. 6 p.m.

Food stamps: Recipients must work 30 hours...

Limit on value: on personal property, i.e. home; car; etc.

Senate called-up: not for a vote

To show ID to obtain "food stamps"

Passed 2-20-2018

Welfare reform proposal
Thurs. 01-18-2018 10 p.m. CDT

(R. WI) Gov. Scott Walker called a special session legislature to pass laws to remove people from welfare.

Welfare Reform Bill
10 bills passed...
See: Capital City Sunday
02-18-2017 9 a.m. CDT

Food Share Program

Recipients must work to eat.
"All Things Considered" 4:50 p.m. CDT segment (4:00 p.m.) Tues. 10-10-2017

Former U.S. Atty. Gen Eric Holder group sue Walker and won over failure to call two special elections to fill vacancies...
See: Times Tues. 02-27-2017 4 p.m. (5:15 p.m. segment)

Elections held: In 4th Assembly District and 1st Senate District per Dane County Circuit Court order... split election result.

Before the first Tues, in April, 2018

Election Case Decision

Judge Joanne Reylends, Dane County Circuit Court ordered Walker to hold two special elections to fill vacant seats by two resigning legislators. Time 03-22-2018 4 p.m. (4:35 p.m. segment)

Before the first Tues. in April, 2018.

We are at risk of a blue wave in Wisconsin. Tweet Gov. Walker (04-03-2018) 7 a.m. CDT

Big government big interest flooded our state distorted our record. Next they'll target me.

Republican lost in district, i.e. 10th District by 10 percent to a Democrat.

Republicans had held that seat for 17 years...

Wake-up call!!! By Gov. Walker.

Source: Shawn Johnson, Capitol Bureau Chief. Time

Guest: Jerry Badger

"Here and Now" WPT Fri. 01-18-2018 7:30 p.m. CDT

Senator (D. Wis.) Patty Schachtner won by 10 points in the 10th District. Republicans had held this thought safe district for 17 years prior to Sen. Schachtner unexpected landslide victory.

Students vs. the NRA

The Florida uprising taking on the gun lobby
Issue 1309/1310 March 22 - April 15, 2018, cover story

Trumpedo, NRA and gang advocates more guns: Arm the schools, places of worship, etc.

A lover's question?!!

Cops, soldiers, and such are armed and trained. Nonetheless many of them are killed by people with guns?!

Where are the Dems candidates 2018 on this "firing line" life and death issue?


"Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity"

- MLK, Jr book: Strength to Love, pg. 4 ch. 3 (1963)

[rock and roll themed wordsearch]

[classical music themed wordsearch]

"Rock -n- roll will never die!!!"

"Demi's Rock"
October 16, 2018 p. 46

Demi Lovato

Our prayers are being heard as update reports are sister Demi Lovato's prognosis continues to improve.

"Alone again, naturally!!!"

If our beloved sister Demi had been alone with stricken with "July drug overdose", we may have lost this great soul!!!

Whitney Houston
Ad nauseam...


Celebrities need a trusted (non-disclosure) !!! 24/7/365 [+1] personal [medically trained] "lifeguard"!!!

Rock on!


[Affirm Goodness wordsearch]

Evangelical Lutheran Worship (ELW) #655 [pictures of a bird and a butterfly]


Son of God, Eternal Savior

Son of God, eternal Savior, source of life and truth and grace,
Word made flesh, whose birth among us hallows all our human race,
You our head, who, throned in glory, for your own will ever plead;
Fill us with your love and pity, heal our wrong, and help our need.

Son of God, eternal Savior, source of life and truth and grace,
Word made flesh, whose birth among us hallows all our human race,
By your praying, by your willing that your people should be one,
Grant, oh, grant our hope's fruition; here on earth your will be done.


C Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name, thy kingdom come, they will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

For thine is the kingdom, and the power and the glory, forever and ever. [DO NOT USE]



C I believe in God, the Father almighty, creator of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, God's only Son, our Lord.

Who was conceived by the Holy Spirit
born of the Virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried;
He descended to the dead.
On the third day he rose again;
He ascended into heaven.
He is seated at the right hand of the Father.
And He will come to judge
the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit.

The holy catholic Church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting. Amen


P Almighty God, Father, + Son, and Holy Spirit, bless you now and forever.
C Amen

Mercy!!! Forgiveness!!

- Katy Lee
11-29-2017, Wed. 10 a.m. CDT

Still praying! Praying for:

Dr. Bill Cosby, PhD

From his prison cage:
No bad news is good news to hear! So blissed he is taking "that hell" so well!

#metoomovement seem silent since the "high tech" lynching of Dr. Cosby (aka Emmet Till (1955)

Keep on pushing!!!

On Tues. 10-23-2018, Dr. Cosby's new attorney filed his case appeal to State Superior Court... PA.

Keeping the faith!!!



[Imperfections wordsearch]

[Number Puzzle search]

A petition to God!!!
Ecc. 12:14

"A lover's questions??"

What manner of man?
Dr. William "Bill" Cosby

a) Will his humongous "good deeds" ransom his mercy?!!

1) Robin Givens
African queen!
Former Ms. Mike Tyson
Ultra-black-beauty, wrote: Dr. Cosby had treated her like a regal queen when connected to his NBC show, and paid for her education...

Why no sexual?

Is she too ugly?

2) Why two faithful wives...?

Why does both of his wives, i.e. IRI wonderful Camille, and TV wife Clair Huxtable aka Phyica Rashid stand by THIS MAN?

Between these two whomever else can know Bill Cosby's "face"! "edges"! and "soul" any better?!!

What of:

3) Humongous donations of money to many black colleges?

4) Supported up and coming black talent, e.g., Robert Townsend, actor, director and producer?

5) Tinsel: "sex and drugs" town!!!
Tinseltown new superstar "Hannibal" Brutus

Why this white negro so-called "Hannibal" Brutus only accuse Dr. Cosby of "rape" after he commenced to speak out like Marcus Garvey and Malcolm X to black folks, and thereby silence him?

Proverbs 29:2



The View Viewpoint

How to raise a sweet son in an era of angry men
By Faith Salie

Hours after I gave birth to my first child, my husband cradled all five pounds of our boy and said gently, "Hi, sweet pea." Not "buddy" or "little man". Sweet pea. The words filled me with unanticipated comfort. Like most parents, we knew what we'd name our son but never discussed how we'd speak to him. I was witnessing my husband's commitment to raising a sweet boy.

Because this is what the world needs now, urgently: sweet boys and people who grow them.

There are so many angry men among us. There are angry women too, but they're only beginning to claim this emotion that has long been denied them. Women's public anger delivers deliberate messages - it's pussy hats, reclaiming our time and #MeToo. It's the kind of anger that gives girls voices. Men's anger tries to shut down the voices of others. Today's angriest women galvanize; today's angriest men murder.

My son is now 5, and I'm also the mother of a 3-year-old daughter. I'm thrilled that she is growing up in a time when American girls are encouraged to be both fierce and kind, strong and compassionate. The T-shirts that declare GIRLS RULE THE WORLD offer an empirical falsehood, but at least the aspiration is there. My daughter recently delighted me when she deemed her makeshift kite - a rainbow scarf tied to a stick - a fencing foil and ran about the woods parrying and proclaiming, "En garde!" But I delighted even more in my son when, at a birthday party where the balloon artist presumptuously twisted pneumatic swords for all the boys, he asked for a balloon heart.

Boys have always known they could do anything; all they had to do was look around at their Presidents, religious leaders, professional athletes, at the statues that stand erect in cities big and small. Girls have always known they were allowed to feel anything - except anger. Now girls, led by women, are being told they can own righteous anger. Now they can feel what they want and be what they want.

There's no commensurate lesson for boys in our culture. While girls are encouraged to be not just ballerinas but astronauts and coders, boys - who already know they can walk on the moon and dominate Silicon Valley - don't receive explicit encouragement to fully access their emotions. Boys are still snips and snails and puppy-dog tails. We leave them behind from birth. Walk into any baby store and you're greeted in the boys' department by brown and neon green layettes festooned with sharks, trucks and footballs. Onesies for baby boys declare, TOUGH LIKE DADDY. The boy taught from infancy to be tough is emotionally doomed. (Mind you, I'm all for a onesie for any gender that announces, RESILIENT LIKE MOMMY.)

We don't need to raise kids with gender neutrality or deny intrinsic differences between boys and girls. We do need to recognize that children, regardless of gender, harbor innate sweetness that we,as a society, would do well to foster and preserve.

Sweet boys grow up to be men who recognize the strength in being vulnerable and empathetic. Men who aren't threatened by criticism or perceived competition from people whom they deem "other" - be it skin color, sexual orientation, religion, education or whatever. Sweet boys are children who've been given, by their parents and wider society, the permission to feel everything and to express those emotions without shame.

At a young age, this should be done explicitly, in organized forums for discussions at school. It must be done relentlessly and organically, in our family homes. Parents must invite their sons to be sad, afraid, hurt, silly and affectionate, and embrace them as often as they snuggle their daughters. Sweet boys learn early on that they can defend themselves against loneliness by reaching out and asking for support rather than turning into people who, literally, grab for power. Sweet boys evolve into openhearted men who aren't confused about consent and sexual boundaries, because they experience women as equals.

A man raised with access to the same gamut of emotions and choices as women does not say, "Women are special", as Donald Trump recently averred after disbelieving Roy Moore's accusers; he does not delegate sugar and spice and humility and gentleness to the ladies, while defining himself through anger, lust and pride. Boys will not be merely boys. If we let them, boys will be human.

Salie is the author of Approval Junkie

Decoding Rush Limbaugh
The biggest mouth in the universe!!!

Mr. Rush Limbaugh is too well known, as a controversial "big mouthpiece" for the powerful elite to warrant introduction here.

What makes his long run!!!

I write only to dissect his power and longevity!

Yes, of course - I am a listener, but NOT his "ditto head"!!!!!

Mr Limbaugh success recipe is short and s____o sweet!!!

He listen to ostensible liberals, e.g. View, and play their comments and then states his assessments on them on his show.


Therefore, the listeners believe he listens to "both sides" of the "hot topic"!!!

But what block liberal radio access to power?

However his best of his magical tricks is to hotly criticize "both sides", i.e. Republicans and Democrats, which makes it appear he's on his "listeners' side"!!!

Fake Chatterbox

In his foxy way: Mr Limbaugh appears objective and truthful! Moreover his listeners - callers constantly repetitiously remind Mr. Limbaugh to tell them what "think"!!! Ditto!!! He tells them what to "think"? TELL MORE!!

A salient illustration is about three months ago a male caller said: My heart belongs to my wife! My soul to God! And my mind to you, Rush!!!


"Home School Community"
Rush Limbaugh provides for young children (minds) education!

"Rush Books"!

Wed. 01-11-2017

On the opposite dial!!!

Thom! Bill! Stephanie Miller! etc, whom I love... by the way, WILL NOT criticize "them Dems"!! and block their listen-callers' criticism of them, e.g. esp. Hillary (1996)!

Bad Static!!

Thus, in turn, it's too short and bitter!!!

They lock-out their own intended listeners - audience!


They too, like Rush does - would abundantly benefit from a billionaire "sugar daddy" e.g. Koch Brothers!


Supreme Model Kendall Jenner

Fake controversy - deja vu all over again!!!

Coke! Anybody!

This time it's: appropriation of black culture!!!

In Afro hair!

I say: BS!!!

How many black women wear blond hair dos!!!

See: Page Sixty


PC Prison Dress Code

Kendall Jenner
In fake faux Afro beauty shop garbage
I love seeing a beautiful Afro on a gorgeous!!! lady!
cf. Whoopi Goldberg
Thank you, mam!!!!


See page sixty. 10-23-18

Today is Yesterday - Again!!!


Brooklyn Corner Store (10-16-2018)

Jeremiah, a nine years-old black-baby-boy
"They were never really gone!!!"
(aka Emmet Till 1955
was outrageously falsely accused by a white woman of sexual assault!!!
Innocent child!!!

However, store video showed his backpack accidentally brushed her back!!! (Without his knowledge!)

Since the birth of the nation the white woman "woman" accuser was "always believe her!!!

Inside Montgomery's powerful memorial honoring 4,400 lives News Tues. 10-09-2018 5:30 p.m. CDT

Opened April 02, 2018
Anchor Lester Holt and co-founder, lawyer, author Bryan Stevens took the viewers on a tour down Lynch Bloody Lane!

Mr Stevens' book "Just Mercy" to become a new movie...

Lester Holt wept at family member name... Huston!!!

See also: Tues. 10-16-2018

We Will Remember

On April 26, 2017, in Montgomery, Alabama, Pauline and Charlie Sullivan, founders of CURE, attended the opening of the National Memorial for Peace and Justice and the Legacy Museum: From Enslavement to Mass Incarceration.

The Equal Justice Initiative (EJI) is the sponsor of these new institutions and is led by EJI founder, Bryan Stevenson. Bryan has been a strong supporter of International CURE and was the main speaker at our 5th global conference in 2009 in Abuja, Nigeria. Recently, he asked staff attorney, Charlotte Morrison, to represent EJI in Rwanda.

Over the past six years, EJI staff has spent thousands of hours researching and documenting over 4000 racial terror lynchings in the U.S. between the Civil War and World War II. The twelve most active states are the following: AL, AR, FL, GA, KY, LA, MS, NC, SC, TN, TX, and VA. They have recently supplemented their research by documenting lynchings in eight other states: IL, IN, KS, MD, MO, OH, OK and WV.

The Sullivans noted that northern states like MN, CA and NY also had lynchings. Overall, there are 801 counties where a lynching took place and each has a 6 foot coffin like monument which is etched with the name of the person lynched as shown on the left.

Duplicates of these large, four-sided columns are in an adjacent field and people from one of these lynching counties are encouraged to transport the very county column in the field to the county and place it as a marker in a prominent place. See the interactive map and complete the Memorial Monument Interest form on the EJI website if it shows that at least one lynching was in your county and you would like to be involved in placing the monument in a prominent place in your county.

Remembering Rudy

As Deb Bozydaj, President of CURE-NY, wrote, "Rudolph "Rudy" Cypser passed peacefully at his home on February 16, 2018 at the age of 94. Rudy, along with his wife, Betty, spent well over 40 years, essentially a lifetime, as social and criminal justice reformers. We cannot remember Rudy without speaking of Betty, his loving wife of 70 years."

They were the founders and co-presidents of the NY state chapter. They also represented International CURE at the United Nations and authored global and regional documents calling for prison reform.

One of the most important was the 2008 report called Dignity of the Individual which gave a summary of the status of prisons in the 35 countries of the Organization of American States (OAS). Selected passages from the Report were read to the OAS's Inter-American Commission on Human Rights and later the entire report was officially submitted to the Commission.

Our presentation and Rudy's report played a major role in the unanimous vote by the Commission to publish Principles and Best Practices on the Protection of Persons Deprived of Liberty in the Americas", which can be found on the Commission's website.


Shown after our presentation in the front row are left to right Charlie Sullivan, Jose Filho and Tony Payan. On the back row are Betty Cypser, Alan Pogue and Rudy Cypser.

In our next newsletter, we will remember other CURE prison reformers who have died in the last year. Their leadership and financial support have been crucial to the development of our organization locally, nationally and now internationally.

Where will the 9th International CURE Conference be held?

As you see, our 8th Conference on Human Rights & Prison Reform was very successful. There were three reasons for this:
(1) the team of Pius, Heidi and Joshua worked very hard to put it together
(2) Purchasing a visa for $35 at the airport in Rwanda reduced the fear of being rejected. This happened in Costa Rica when one of our conference participants was sent back to the U.S. because he was on the sex offender public registry. No one was rejected in Rwanda even though there were some in attendance with criminal records.
(3) the site of the conference was in a nice hotel with reasonable costs. For example, for two people in a room with single beds, the charge was $140 a night and this included a full breakfast the next morning.

Of course, for most participants, the cost of travel was their largest expense which was over a thousand dollars for the round-trip. We also had to charge a pre-registration fee and a much larger conference registration fee because we were not able to raise the funds to take care of the entire cost of accommodations.

In 2020, we plan to have the 9th Conference and welcome your suggestions. So far, countries in Asia that have been suggested are Japan, and Hong Kong in China. Even Beijing, but getting a visa and other problems may be insurmountable. In regard to Europe, Swedish restorative justice experts at the conference thought Europe has a human rights emphasis but needed restorative justice.

In conclusion, I have been baffled by the lack of an intergovernmental organization (IGO) in Asia. South and North America has the Organization of American States (OAS) while Europe and Africa also has an IGO. Thus, why not use the 9th Conference if it is in Asia to organize a campaign to have at least one intergovernmental organization with a human rights commission in Asia.

Just some thoughts, Charlie Sullivan



Washington State Governor Jay Inslee has signed into law "ban the box" legislation for the state's public and private employers. Washington becomes the 11th state to require both public and private-sector employers to delay background checks and inquiries about job applicants' conviction records until the individual has had an opportunity to first present his or her qualifications for the job.

The other states that "ban the box" are AZ, CA, GA, IN, KY, NV, NY, PA, SC and UT.

The NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund (LDF) has reached a settlement with the Target Corporation to compensate tens of thousands who were subjected to discrimination because they have criminal records. The settlement builds from guidelines published by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).

CURE believes Amazon is also guilty of discrimination because it only hires people with criminal records who are "off paper" for seven years i.e. finished probation or parole and wait for seven years. Do the math. People could be in their sixties before eligible.

Also, if you feel you have been discriminated against, because of your record, google EEOC or contact the main office of the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 131 M St. NE, Washington, DC 20507 or call 202-663-4900 to find a U.S. EEOC office near you. Also, google the EEOC for the guidance passed April 25, 2012, Number 915-002 for hiring people with criminal records.

There is a White-Collar Online Support Group that is open to all individuals throughout the U.S. who have white collar or nonviolent criminal incarceration issues. See for more details; contact Progressive Prison Ministries, P.O. Box 1232, Weston, Connecticut 06883

Google Addiction Resource Hub for a very comprehensive list of help for those suffering due to the drug crisis throughout the country. Also, help for the Right Substance Abuse Program (Drug and Alcoholic) call 24 Hour Toll Free Line: 888-961-4558 or 866-243-4401 or 4407. Another 24/7 hotline is 1-800-662-4357.

The Tar Heel CURE Chapter is seeking "free world" volunteers in North Carolina to start the official chapter of National CURE. If interested call Priscilla Carlisle at (336) 241-2704 or email her at

In Rwanda, Charles Thornton shared that people who have been in prison in the United States, will be having their annual conference Sept. 13-15 in Orlando, Florida. For more info, please call 916-501-9988.


Professor James Kilgore was on an electronic monitor (EM) as part of his parole. He now leads a coalition which aims to challenge monitoring and other forms of punitive technology. The coalition rejects the use of EM as an "alternative to incarceration" calling it instead an alternative form of incarceration. Since EM is in use, the coalition has developed guidelines to reduce the harm done by monitoring. These recommend that EM must:

(1) facilitate freedom of movement to enable people to meet basic daily needs e.g. parenting, employment, medical treatment, etc;
(2) not be added to less restrictive forms of supervision;
(3) not disproportionately applied to people of color or poor people;
(4) be governed by transparent, individualized rules; not a generic "one size fits all" set of conditions and restrictions.

The guidelines also reject any form of fee for EM, insist that people must be given credit for time served for time spent on a monitor, and that EM should never be applied for life.

CURE welcomes your input on these guidelines and/or whether we work to abolish this technology since the abuses are so severe.


Volunteer NOW to facilitate voting in the Fall by eligible people who are in your jail! There are 3,300 jails in the United States and every detainee pre-trial detainee or person serving a misdemeanor in jail may be eligible to vote. For information about jail voting initiatives google Voting While Incarcerated (2005) and Locked Up and Locked out of Voting by Rebecca McCray. Finally, email Nicole Porter if you have questions concerning the voting in jail campaign.

Insightful Articles (google them)

Why aren't we spending more on prison education? By Stephen Steurer

Loved ones are the "silver bullet" to prisoners' success during and after incarceration by Jean Thrash

Yep, slavery is still legal: The 13th Amendment ban allows one exception, and we see it in our justice system by Jim Liske

Detroit Pistons owner risks tarnishing rep to profit off prison phone call industry Posted By Violet Ikonomova

At the federal supermax, when does isolation become torture? By Alan Prendergast

Gov. Northam signs bill requiring prisons and jails to supply feminine products edited by Jennifer Walker

A veteran services officer in Soledad Prison: Why not throughout the system? By Shad Meshad

Let's put an end to prosecutorial immunity by Frederic Bloc

NC prison has special unit for veterans by Shad Meshad

Inmates wounded in deadly SC prison riot file suits against state by John Monk

Where the right went wrong on criminal justice by Arthur Rizer and Lars Trautman

Shown are Massachusetts-CURE's leaders Louise Carcione and Franklin Hobbs who have radio shows heard globally. For example, Louise hosts Health In Your Neighborhood that can be seen by going to You-Tube on the web, type in Boston Praise Radio & TV, and her name.

READ THEM! Left to Tell: Discovering God Amidst the Rwandan Holocaust by Immaculee Ilibagiza; Separate and Unequal: The Kerner Commission and the Unraveling of American Liberalism by Steven M. Gillon; Decarcerating America: From Mass Punishment to Public Health Edited by Ernest Drucker; Juvenile Justice Now: Reinvention and Promise by H. Ted Rubin; The Sun Does Rise: How I Found Life and Freedom on Death Row by Anthony Ray Hinton and Ministry to the Incarcerated by Dr. Henry G. Covert.

Joan's Newsletter

Soul Food
Dec 2005

(Devotional on Stewardship)

Children rarely have any responsibilities, but as they begin to grow up they usually learn how to manage their own lives. When they enter the corporate world they can apply these skills to their job positions and help to manage the life and property of others. However, some of us fail to learn or accept responsibility for ourselves and have little or no respect for the livelihood of others. Therefore, we rely on others to take care of us or resort to dishonesty and crime. Today, as we take a closer look at the subject of stewardship let's consider how it may apply to our personal lives.

The Bible says: "Who then is that wise and faithful steward, whom his master will make him ruler over his household..." (Luke 12:42 NKJV) The Vines dictionary defines the word steward here in part as: 'The manager of a household or estate. Believers generally.' In other words, as servants of God we're held accountable for everything that has been entrusted to us. Our time, possessions and all other resources including our bodies and the earth we live on. Remember, God is the owner and we are the overseers. "Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father..." (James 1:17)

Stewardship starts in the home by learning how to provide and make sacrifices for ourselves and family. (See: Pr. 13:22; 20:7) Listen to the words of Timothy: "But if anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he is denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever." (1 Tim 5:8) The fact of the matter is, God expects us to learn these skills so we're a greater asset to His work... especially to those who are less fortunate. (See: James 1:27; 2:8-9) The simple truth is, God expects each one of us to do our part! "Let him who stole steal no longer, but rather let him labor, working with his hands what is good, that he may have something to give to him who has need." (Eph. 4:28)

The key to being a good steward is living a God-centered life. This is where we find our true desires, wisdom and guidance to carry out the Lord's will. The Psalmist wrote: "Delight yourself also in the LORD, and he shall give you the desires of your heart. The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD... Teach me to do Your will, for You are my God." (Ps. 37:4, 23; 143:10) As we take daily inventory, the Lord will help us to check our motives and to prioritize our responsibilities. (See: Col. 1:9-10; 3:23) It's important to know, that apart from God we can do nothing!

Personally, God has used my prison experience to teach me a lot about responsibility. However, I had to surrender my life to Him. For it is written: "No man can serve two masters..." (Matt. 6:24) It was either maintain a prison job that paid pennies a day, and learn how to manage what little I had... or go without! Furthermore, I started to use my resources and talents or gifts for God's purpose. (See: Rom. 12:4-8) Yes, it has taken commitment and sacrifice! Nonetheless, it has increased my resources and abilities beyond what I could have imagined. (See: 1 Pet. 4:10)

Let me ask you, are you ready to take a leap of faith and trust God to show you how to be more responsible with your life? Or maybe you're already a committed servant of God, but unsure of how to become a good steward to your community and country. Take it from me, make yourself available and God will give you the ability! Jesus says: "Freely you have received, freely give." (Matt. 10:8) Only then will we hear the words that we all long for: "Well done, good and faithful servant; you have been faithful over a little, I will make you ruler over many..." (Matt. 25:21)

Tyrone Emig #204824

Peace starts with a smile. :)

God Himself doesn't propose to judge a man until he is dead. So why should you?

When you get to your wit's end, you'll find God lives there.

From Darkness to Light -

The saying goes that when we travel through life in an unspiritual and criminal sinful way, we are traveling in the Darkness because we know not God, and are therefore doomed. I traveled in Darkness for many years of my life, and this Darkness led me to Death Row where I sat for many years awaiting execution during my stay on Death Row, a place I know to be very Dark. I came to a decision that changed my life. I no longer wanted to be in the Darkness. I wanted to be in the light. So I changed my unspiritual and criminal ways and got closer to God, and in doing so I also got closer to the light. So close that I'm proud to say as I sit here in the light writing this message to all, I am no longer on Death Row, because the decision and changes I made in my life brought about God's blessing to free me from the Darkness to the light, and though I am still imprisoned my future is bright.

"So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal."

- II Corinthians 4:18

Black political power and Democrats lock on it!!!

The fake attacks on Mr. Kanye West's character

The actual intense conflict at play here is the black elites, e.g. Al Sharpton, Barack Obama, Donna Brazile etc, ownership and "sell-out" of the priceless black vote. See cf. "The Art of the Matter" by Michael Eric Dyson. July-August 2018, p.p. 24-25.

Just the facts, folks!!!

Their actual fear is that Mr. West shall persuade "free minded" blacks and others, "like minded" to abandon the nefarious "Clinton Machine". See below: "The era of (Bill) Clinton liberalism is over: what does that mean for Hillary and the Dems?" By Joan Walsh; p. 3 of 3

See also: SNL 10-06-2018 fake political hit!!

This is one black man praying Mr. West succeed!!!

Real politik!!!

Afterthought: (Remember!! political takedown of Sarah Palin 2008)...

#getreal!!! thefullpicture!!!

The Era of (Bill) Clinton Liberalism is Over:
What Does That Mean for Hillary and the Dems?

Clinton revived the Democrats partly by incorporating GOP critiques on crime, welfare and race. What comes next?


[article is small text, hard to make out]

Real Politik!!!

"Loves Kim"!!!
(NK leader) Minutes

"Loves Trump"!!!

Quid Pro Quo

Everybody knows of "father figure's" ego "craves" and "loves" "flattery" (to Trumpedo)!!!

Come on people!!! Let's get real!



Real Politik!

Thank God!!!

Newt Gingrich
on View
Tues. 8-28-2018 10 a.m. CST

Mr. Gingrich, guest... told:

Ms. Whoopi, co-host...

Echoing Newt's proclamation thus:

"Our government is corrupt": Whoopi

Newt: Yes!

And cited specific illustrations that knocked Whoopi speechless.


#Proverbs 29:1




October 2018

Dear Friend,

Thank you so much for the support you have given me over the years. Together, we have come a very long way. Yet, in this pivotal and unprecedented moment in American history much, much more needs to be done.

As you undoubtedly know, the election on November 6 will determine, to a very significant degree, the future direction of our country.

Do we continue with a one-party right-wing government in Washington, led by a pathological liar with strong authoritarian tendencies? Or, do we stand up to Trump and fight for an agenda that represents all Americans, and not just the 1%.

That's what this election is all about.

As you know, I have been fighting hard not only for my own reelection in Vermont but to support progressive candidates across the country. I am doing everything I humanly can to end Republican one-party rule in Washington and to help elect progressive senators, members of Congress, governors and state legislators.

As part of that effort, over the last three weeks of the campaign I will be traveling to, among other states, Indiana, Michigan, South Carolina, Iowa, Wisconsin, Arizona, Colorado, Nevada, California, Maryland, and Florida.

I want to thank you for being a critical part of growing our movement. Today, we need you now more than ever before. Would you make a generous contribution to my reelection campaign and to support my efforts to elect progressive candidates all across the country? I would not ask if this were not important. I cannot do it without your help.

In the midterm election of 2014 the United States had the lowest voter turnout since World War II. The result: Republicans won landslide victories all across the country. That has got to change, and that is what I'm trying hard to do.

Along with the candidates I am campaigning with, I'm going to do everything I can to get working people and young people involved in the political process and to the polls.

At a time when Republicans want to suppress the vote, we have to increase voter turnout. At a time when Republicans continue their war against women, we have to elect more women to local, state and federal offices.

And at a time when Trump wants to throw 32 million people off the health care they have, and do away with the protections for preexisting conditions, we have to guarantee health care for all as a right, not a privilege, through a Medicare for all single payer program.

Now is the time for us to revitalize American democracy, end the collapse of the middle class, and create a nation of economic, social, racial, and environmental justice.

Now is the time for all of us - black, white, Latino, Native American, Asian American - to come together and take a stand against authoritarianism, oligarchy, and bigotry.

If Democrats take back either the House or the Senate we can stop Trump's agenda cold. No more tax breaks for billionaires, no more throwing people off the healthcare they have, no more talk about building walls, no more xenophobic immigration policy.

If Democrats gain control over both the House and the Senate, we can begin a full-scale effort to finally pass legislation which protects the interests of working families and not just the 1%. Among other issues, I will help lead the effort to expand Social Security, and stop all Republican efforts to cut that vitally important program.

I should also mention that if Democrats control the Senate I will likely become chair of the important Senate Budget Committee. In that capacity, I can play a strong role in creating budgetary priorities for this country which reflect the interests of all Americans and not just wealthy campaign donors.

This means demanding that the billionaire class and large profitable corporations start paying their fair share of taxes so that we can provide adequate funding for healthcare, education, environmental protection, infrastructure, affordable housing, and other important needs.

This election is not only about what happens to our lives. It is about our children, grandchildren and future generations. It is about whether we effectively combat climate change, and transform our energy systems away from fossil fuels and into sustainable energies such as wind and solar.

As we go forward together on this important work, I would like to once again ask for your support in these closing weeks. Your contribution to my campaign will make it possible for us to create the kind of progressive government we desperately need.

Thank you,

Senator Bernie Sanders

11-01-2018 2:36 A.M. CDT


Yes, Bernie, and team I donated, again!!!!

But, we have no alternative. You let us down in 2016!!!! Bernie, you did not run to win, nor fight for the nomination against DNC stealing "our revolution" 2016!!!!!!

Bernie, you knew, as did we all - that Hillary could not win or steal the 2016 general election!!!

Bernie, you let us down, you also let our global world down!!!

See: Actor Morgan Freeman's Oct. 2018 tweets!

#"I hope we don't fooled again"/The Who

Open Letter

Companions Journeying Together


A Reflection by Jenny

About 6 or 7 years ago, my mom told me that Companions was starting a fundraising committee and asked if I would be interested in attending a couple of meetings. In the past, I had only ever been a person that donated to charities. I had never gotten actively involved. As the meetings were really just going to be brainstorming for new ways in which to raise funds, I decided to give it a try.

I arrived at that first meeting with a couple of ideas, one of which has taken off like none of the others: gift wrapping. Borders's website advertised that if you were a charity that promoted literacy, you could sign up to come into any Borders store to wrap people's purchases for donation. That first year we signed up for a couple of days and raised a couple hundred dollars. The next year we signed up for more days at various Borders locations to raise even more.

Then, sadly, Borders filed for bankruptcy and closed all of their store locations. Would this be the end of gift wrapping? Are there other stores that would allow us to continue this fundraiser?

I have no idea what made me write to different malls to see if they would be interested in having us provide a gift wrapping service to their patrons while asking for donations in return. The response was overwhelming, "Yes, we allow charities to do this, but we are all booked this year." Fox Valley, however, wrote back that they still had an opening for Christmas Eve if we were interested in signing up. They would provide tables and gift boxes. We would have to supply everything else.

Not knowing exactly what to expect, we showed up with 30 rolls of wrapping paper, 2 pairs of scissors, and 2 tape dispensers. At around noon, we got slammed and stayed that way for 11 hours. We went to stores near us to borrow scissors. I called my husband to bring us more paper. We even enlisted the help of some of the people having their presents wrapped to fold the gift boxes that the mall provided. We were tired, hungry, and our feet hurt. But we raised almost $1000 that day and knew that a mall is where we had to be.

The next year, we contacted Fox Valley early enough to do multiple days. The next year we expanded to multiple days at two different malls. We kept expanding until gift wrapping had evolved into what it is today - a monster fundraiser that utilizes over 50,000 square feet of paper and 50+ volunteers over 10 different days to cover the entire holiday season.

I am still surprised that my little idea of wrapping books for a couple of hours at Borders has morphed into this amazing fundraiser. Never in my wildest imagination did I think that I could have such an impact on the lives of others. - Jenny

Maybe someone is reading this right now who has his/her own little fundraising idea, but doesn't know where to begin or have the people to help run it. Please contact us. We are always looking for new ways to get people involved, expand volunteer opportunities, and create a sense of committee within our organization. If you come up with the idea, we will help carry that idea to fruition.

Thanks so much to Jenny for her very hard work on our Christmas gift wrapping fund raisers. She with the help of all of your volunteers have made this fundraiser a great success for us. Thank you also to all of our volunteers including those from Kohl's Associates Care and the Chicago Ridge Mall for providing us space and all who donated paper, bows and other supplies. We are very grateful. - Jana

Three Birthday Cards a Day

Our volunteer, Deborah, prepares that many birthday cards to send to people who often receive no other Birthday cards. In fact, one man wrote us recently that it was the first birthday card he had ever received. Deborah also adds a beautiful message about the wonder of us each having our own special day. Another man wrote recently of his gratitude to Deborah who had sent him cards for several years. He was especially touched that she had always found him at as he was transferred from prison to prison. Never forget that every act of kindness you offer to another makes a difference.

Facebook Friends

Please become our Facebook friend so you can stay current with all of our activities and needs. Go to and click the "like" button!

The Pennsylvania Prison Society
Since 1787

September 19, 2018

Leon Irby/33802
Columbia Correctional Institution
PO Box 900
Portage, Wisconsin 53901-0900

Dear Mr. Irby,

Thank you for your interest in the Pennsylvania Prison Society! Enclosed is the last issue of Graterfriends. Unfortunately, I can only send one. There is an order form on the back page if you would like to subscribe.

Graterfriends subscriptions are $3.00 per year. We accept payment via check, money order, or UNUSED postage stamps.

Please feel free to contact us if you have any further questions.


Corina Scott
PA Prison Society Intern

Women Who Make a Difference

Mother Wright Feeds the Homeless

[article about Mary Ann Wright]


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