Friday, July 30, 2010

Rob Paul To Pay Paul

During Friday's show, Jeff Wagner was decrying the news that the reptiles that were seized in an investigation earlier this year has already cost a quarter million dollars to taxpayers just for housing them.

Wagner railed that it was an outrage, an outrage he told us, that the tax payers would have to foot this bill.

His solution: Put them in the zoo.

Would someone please tell Wagner that the zoo is also supported with tax dollars?

The Blood Center Needs Your Help

Summers are always rough on the Blood Center of Wisconsin. Regular donors are busy with vacations and other things, and lose track of when they can donate, so their supply levels drop.

To make things worse, because people are out doing things that are more physical, there is a higher percentage of injuries.

Higher demands and lower supplies puts them in a rough spot. Now, with last week’s flooding, things are even tighter for them.

They are asking for people to help by donating whole blood. They also especially need help with getting platelets, which help clot wounds. There need is so great that they have expanded their hours to Sundays for platelet donations. (My appointment to donate platelets is Saturday afternoon.)

So, if you can squeeze an hour or two from your busy schedules, please take the time to donate. You will be helping more people than you realize, you’ll feel good about yourself, and you get cookies and coffee afterwards. It’s a win-win-win for all involved.

You can schedule your appointment to donate by visiting their website or by calling 1-877-BE-A-HERO (1-877-232-4376).

(Cross-posted where I can.)

Friday, July 23, 2010

What Happens When People Take Squawk Radio Too Seriously

From Blogging Blue:

ANOTHER ROUND OF ANTI-GOVERNMENT VIOLENCE…. Over the weekend, a well-armed unemployed carpenter named Byron Williams allegedly initiated a shootout with police in Oakland. Williams’ mother told reporters her son, who survived the ordeal, was angry at “the way Congress was railroading through all these left-wing agenda items.” Another report indicated that Williams has a history of opposing “liberal causes.”

These examples of politically-motivated attacks seem to keep piling up. Just this year, John Patrick Bedell opened fire at the Pentagon; Joe Stack flew an airplane into a building; Jerry Kane Jr. and his son killed two police officers in Arkansas; and the Hutaree Militia terrorist plot was uncovered. Last year, James von Brunn opened fire at the Holocaust memorial museum; Richard Poplawski gunned down three police officers in Pittsburgh, in part because he feared the non-existent “Obama gun ban”; and Dr. George Tiller was assassinated. In 2008, Jim David Adkisson opened fire in a Unitarian church in Tennessee, in part because of his “hatred of the liberal movement.”

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

MSM, Reality Doesn't Follow Template

From the Wisconsin State Journal:

The average Wisconsin resident paid $40 less in state and local taxes and had an income almost 6 percent less than the average American in 2008, according to an analysis of U.S. Census Bureau data by the Wisconsin Budget Project.

Revenue collected in Wisconsin is further below the national average if all state and locally generated revenue is accounted for, including fees and taxes. The state and local government revenue in Wisconsin was $6,152 per person, $236 below the national average.

In per capita federal revenue, the state received $1,310 per person compared with a national average of $1,582. Wisconsin's ranking in per capita federal revenue dropped to 46th from 35th in 2000.

The analysis also found state and local government spending per capita was $7,541 in 2008 — 4.4 percent below the national average — which brings the state down to a ranking of 22nd. Wisconsin was ranked 12th in 2000.

In state and local taxes relative to income, Wisconsin went from 4th in 2000 to 13th in 2008.

Wait, taxes and spending are down?! Under a Democratic Governor?!

Now what the heck will Charlie Sykes, Mark Belling and Patrick McIlheran use to bash Tom Barrett?*

Oh, wait, I forgot who I was talking about for a minute. Sykes, Belling, et alia never worried about reality when coming up with their squawking points.

*They have to bash Barrett because they can't find anything positive about Scott Walker either.

Will Sykes Apologize To Shirley Sherrod?

From the Brawler:

This morning Charlie Sykes joined the rightwing smear effort against Shirley Sherrod. He did it relatively late in his show, at a point when there were questions about the veracity of the video in question. Didn't let that stop him. Now that the full video is out, and it's unequivocally clear that Sherrod was telling a story of overcoming racial prejudice.

Charlie feels that the mainstream media owes Sarah Palin an apology for reporting on remarks made by her once and current future son in law, remarks he has recanted. So clearly Sykes should feel the need to apologize for reporting on a video fragment pushed by an outfit with a record of misleading the public.

Or is he going to double down?

Hypocrisy? From Sykes? Well, color me surprised.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Does Charlie Agree With Ron?

Illy-T pointing out the hypocritical tweet of the geographically-challenged Ron Johnson reminded me of something.

Charlie Sykes felt that a press release of RoJo's, in which he questioned if Senator Russ Feingold agreed with Peggy West, was worthy of posting on his TMJ-sponsored blogsite.

So, the question now is: Does Charlie Sykes agree with Ron Johnson that we should outsource our wolf control program to Monatana or that New York State is not a Great Lake State?

Maybe Sykes and RoJo think that Lake Erie and Lake Ontartio aren't great lakes. They'll probably be referring to them as the "So-So Lakes" from now on.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Will They Give RoJo The "Fair and Balanced" Routine?

When Milwaukee County Supervisor Peggy West made her verbal gaffe about the Arizona racial profiling law, the right wing hate squad was relentless in their attacks on her.

Of course, this was just them being fair and balanced.

But I wonder if and when they'll get around to giving senator-wannabe Ron Johnson the same courtesy.

After all, it was RoJo that couldn't figure out that the State of New York was actually on the Great Lakes, just like Wisconsin. I'm sure that will be up on Drudge soon.

If that wasn't enough for them for some reason, they could also call RoJo out for not even knowing what state he is in. Talk about being a lost soul!

And if that wasn't enough, there is the fact that RoJo has been a staunch defender of BP despite the fact that they have done more damage to the ecological and financial systems of the Gulf Coast states than anyone else in history. On top of that is the news that BP was involved with lobbying the British government to do a prison exchange with Libya, which included the Lockerbie bomber.

If the right wing squawkers and their echo chamber doesn't start calling out RoJo on this stuff, well, people just might think that they are hypocrites.

And we just know that isn't true. Or is it?

Don't Let McIlheran Read This

If Patrick McIlheran reads this article showing the affects of global climate change in the Himilayas, he'll be forced to embarrass himself with a stretch trying to show that it's all gobbledygook.

But the way you can compare the pictures is pretty cool.

H/T James Rowen

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Belling: A Liar or an Idiot?

The question is being asked by The Motley Cow.

Personally, I'd say just a poor judge of judicial qualifications.

All the news talk radio says is fit to print?

I'm so old I remember the days when what was in the morning newspaper used to drive news coverage on radio and television. The paper set the agenda, and the other media played catchup.

For some time now, at least in Milwaukee, the shoe has been on the other foot, with talk radio campaigning, often successfully, to get the Journal Sentinel to cover stories they ordinarily wouldn't because they are marginal or, in some cases, not news at all.

Charlie Sykes on WTMJ-AM, owned by the same company as the newspaper, has had more success than Mark Belling on WISN-AM at pressuring the paper to cover things. A few days of Sykes ranting about something he thinks is important, with claims the paper is covering it up because of some liberal bias (right!) is often enough.

The whole scenario took a definite turn for the worse this week, however, when Belling aired what was a non-story in anyone's book: Tom Barrett's campaign manager is driving a car with expired license plates. Oh, the horror!!! And that's not all. He might even have an unpaid parking ticket or two. Can you imagine???

Clearly, with that kind of scandal rocking his campaign, Barrett should quit the race right now. It's only a matter of time before he does. How could the voters possibly trust him after that expose?

The Journal Sentinel got a tip about this non-story and correctly ignored it. So far, so good.

But Belling yelled about it, and the posse of right-wing trolls who now comment on every JS story began commenting on other stories, asking about the "coverup" of this blockbuster.

So what did we get? A long blog item by Dan Bice on the newspaper's website, explaining and defending the paper's decision not to write about the non-story.

As it if needed an explanation. And now they have written about it, even though it is not (yet) in the print edition. Bice says he wrote the blog item because his editors asked him to.

When Mark Belling and anonymous commenters on the JS website decide what's news and what isn't, we are in serious trouble. That's even worse that Managing Editor George Stanley deciding.

By the way, we're still waiting for the explanation of why the major gaffe in Ron Johnson's TV commercial has not gotten one word in the newspaper, while other news outlets have found it newsworthy.

And has anybody checked lately to see how long the grass is in Keith Gilkes's front yard? Just asking.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Drama Queen Harris Living Up To His Reputation

We pointed out last night that The Hip Muser, James T. (T is for tantrum) Harris, had a hissy fit and walked out on Earl Ingram just before he was supposed to go on the air for an interview.

Tim Cuprisin
, at, picked up on the story. Cuprisin points out that Harris had put up a version of his story on his site:
"Earl lost his mind and BASHED the Beautiful Man on his show this afternoon. It was wild. I felt so sad for him. It was a pure emotional anger-filled rant worthy of a liberal. Of course, there is the back story ... But you will have to wait for that. It'll be worth it."
Beautiful Man?! A rather effeminate way to refer to oneself, but it does fit in with the Drama Queen title.

Anywho, Cuprisin expands on the story on how WMCS was not about to allow Harris to use his appearance to promote his own career. Cuprisin also included a sample video of the sort that Harris likes to post of some idiot literally screaming about NAACP, but not making much sense otherwise. (BTW, Mr. Yelling Idiot, the TEA Party does not represent all Americans. Many of us are trying to get our country out of the whole you dug us into, not drive it deeper down.)

To add to the fun, DQ then has another tantrum about Cuprisin reporting that he couldn't get a hold of Harris. How can that be? After all, Harris has an iPhone4. You know, the kind that Consumer Reports wouldn't recommend.

Harris claims that he finally spoke to Cuprisin, and that that article will be up on Monday. I can't wait.

James T. Harris: Drama Queen

On Thursday, James T. Harris was supposed to appear on Earl Ingram's talk radio show "Rush Hour," on WMCS 1290 AM.

Apparently the Hip Muser got a little too used to being pampered by the folks at Faux News, and had a hissy fit just before the show.

From Mr. Ingram's tweet regarding the matter:

Of course, that isn't something we didn't already know.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

PaddyMac's Theorem on Taxes

PaddyMac thinks it's just fine that wealthy developers put up a couple of corn plants on land they own, in order to get a tax break.

But when he tries to rationalize his position, he starts to contradict himself. Repeatedly.

The miffed lawmakers’ error would lie in thinking the tax break can go to a specific kind of person: family farmers. Sorry, that’s not how it works, especially since Wisconsin’s constitution tries stopping such games with its rule that all property of a certain kind must be taxed uniformly. Tax breaks are based on how the land is used, not who’s using it.

Rightly so: Otherwise, it all devolves into a matter of being popular (or, rather, not being reviled, as property developers are in some circles). Take that to its logical extension and you end up with tax breaks not going to family farms as a whole but, when some future legislators take it into their heads, to only some kinds of family farmers. Ones who don’t raise meat, say. Or who aren’t grumpy. Or whatever.

Taxes shouldn’t be about who you are. They should be about what you do.

I always thought that farming was a profession. So wouldn't farmers be qualified since what they do is farming. Likewise, land developers squatting on land until the prices go up, or land developers. That is what they do.

Methinks that Paddy was simply trying to echo the usual right wing meme, but in a more creative fashion. Unfortunately for him, he got lost somewhere along the way.

What Paddy probably meant was:
Taxes shouldn't be about who you are. They should be about how much money you make. And the more you make, the less you should be taxed.

Loser Picks Loser As Winner

This morning's rendition of Incite with Charlie Sykes had PaddyMac picking Michael "Ethics-free" Gableman as his winner of the week.

It speaks volumes about both of these men.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Zinging Paddy Mac

I won't spoil it. Just go to Paddy's latest on climate change and read the first comment.

A Sign of Desperation?

It must not be going well for Team Walker, when their unofficial official spokesman, Charlie Sykes, has to play the racist card.

Sykes: A Liar? Gasp!

From The Brawler:

Amusing. Sykes is ranting and raving about Feingold's "penny pincher" ad. The ad kicks off with Feingold saying he voted against the bank bailout. Sykes says "I'm glad he voted against the bank bailout."

That of course is a big fat lie as Sykes stumped for the passage of TARP and hailed Paul Ryan for voting for it after a protracted Hamlet act.

From Illy-T:
Given the Pythagorean axiom, "minus one times minus one equals one," maybe if Journal Communications, Inc. had both Sykes* and McIlheran talking at the same time, truth might conceivably result.

* "Charlie Sykes" is actually a stand-alone, all-purpose punchline** in certain quarters, which fact is tremendously comical all of itself.

** And is it any wonder
And back to the Brawler:

This seems fairly obvious to anyone who's ever listened to Charlie Sykes. Yet Charlie, who clearly dearly wishes he was a principled and independent thinker like his old man, as opposed to a thrice married guy who preens as a moralist, would have nothing to do with it. The Brawler recalls, quite clearly, Charlie saying on the radio that yes he receives talking point emails. But you know what he does with them? He puts them in the trash!

Humorously, he read an RPW release , virtually in its entirety, today just after 10:25.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

And They Say There Is No God

Proof that He exists:
Belling worked himself into High Dudgeon when he connected the dots between a Pewaukee sewage-dumping and the subsequent E-Coli-caused beach closing on Pewaukee Lake.

Just as he got around to decrying the lack of media coverage of the dumping.....

his station went off the air.
Unfortunately, Satan let them back on the air.

Something tells me that this is one of Daddio's post that PaddyMac won't be showing the linky love for.

Sykes Should Look After His Own County

Eight years ago, riding on the wave of anger generated by the Ament pension scandal in Milwaukee County, Charlie Sykes and company made a great push to oust Ament and as many of the County Board Supervisors that they could. Unsatisfied with this blood lust, they also pushed to downsize the Milwaukee County Board, saying that 25 supervisors were too many for a county the size of Milwaukee.

The Board members acted proactively and downsized themselves to the current number of 19 seats, before the angry mob could make it lower.

Now we see that the Ozaukee County Board voted to approve a resolution to apologize to the State of Arizona because MATC protested their bigoted immigration policy. Their ignorant vote is bad enough, but the story goes on to mention something really surprising (emphasis mine):
On a 16-5 vote, the board approved a resolution describing the MATC action as "intolerant and divisive" and asking the college's board to reconsider its decision. There are 31 supervisors on the county board. In addition to the five no voters, seven supervisors walked out of the meeting before the vote and three others were absent.
Ozaukee County has a population in the range of 85,000 people or one eleventh of Milwaukee County's 950,000+ people. Despite the drastic difference in populations, the Land of Oz has 12 more supervisors than Milwaukee County.

What should be even more alarming is that a full third of the supervisors in Oz didn't have the fortitude to make a stand one way or the other.

The question is: Why is Sykes, who lives in Ozaukee County, OK with having an excessive number of wimpy supervisors, but hates Milwaukee County's supervisors so much that he would like to see them all gone? Is it because he is bitter from not making it as a county employee? Or is it because his Republican masters are worried that they might defy Walker and make him look even more foolish than he already does?

His Fourth Marriage Didn't Mellow Him At All

Rush Limbaugh, now married for the fourth time, hasn't mellowed, or apparently slowed down his drug consumption, one bit.

He is now blaming President Obama for going back into time to create the recession because of racism:

Rush Limbaugh said on his July 2 radio show that he believes Obama tanked the economy on purpose, both as "payback" for 230 years of racial oppression and because Obama simply doesn't like America.

He railed: "Who is Obama? Why is he doing this? Why? Why is he doing it? Is he stupid? Is it an accident? Is he doing it on purpose or what have you? ... I think we face something we've never faced before in the country -- and that is, we're now governed by people who do not like the country, who do not have the same reverence for it that we do. Our greatest threat (and this is saying something) is internal."

Maybe he is simply trying to out-Beck Beck...

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Rush, A Racist? Who'd A Thunk It?

From Politicususa:
On his radio show today, Rush Limbaugh was speculating as to why First Lady Michelle Obama did not attend Sen. Robert Byrd’s funeral, and his speculation focused on Michelle Obama’s “pure slave blood,” and President Obama’s “lack of pure slave blood.” Limbaugh managed to not only take a shot at the deceased Byrd, but he also leveled a racial slur at the Obamas.


Limbaugh said, “I don’t know why Michele my belle is not there, but as has been said by several black civil rights leaders, Obama does not have authentic slave blood, but Michele does. We can only speculate. Maybe she is at a skybox at a baseball or football game, who knows?”
That's the leader of the GOP, folks. And they think that this stuff will really sell with the majority of Americans?

H/T James Rowen

They Must Not Get MJS In Wausau

From the Wausau Daily Herald:
If central central Wisconsin is going to get young professionals to move here and stay here, it needs to improve its image online, open up communication between hubs Wausau, Stevens Point and Wisconsin Rapids, and it needs more bike lanes.

Those were some of the ideas raised by a group of young leaders assembled Wednesday by the regional economic development organization Centergy, which covers Marathon, Portage and Wood counties. The Centergy Creative Council is a group of about 20 people, mostly in their 20s and 30s, who are tasked with finding ways to make the region more attractive to young professionals. Fifteen people attended the group's "inaugural summit" at the chalet at Granite Peak Ski Area to discuss the specific initiatives they hope to pursue.
The article goes on to point out that one of the biggest obstacles facing this group is that the area is not regionalized.

Bike paths? Lifestyle opportunities? Regionalization?

Obviously, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel doesn't get delivered up there nor do they have access to JSOnline for some reason. If they had access to these, they would have been able to learn from Patrick McIlheran that the only way for a community or region to survive is if there is sufficient sprawl to pave everything over.

Fighting To Maintain Their Title

As we approach the day that the statewide smoking ban is implemented, State Senator Mary Lazich, or more likely, her overpaid glorified secretary, Kevin Fischer, put up a blog post pushing for the use of e-cigarettes.

That would be the same e-cigarettes that consists of a scary chemical cocktail in itself, as the impeccable and multi-talented Emily Mills points out:

What are e-cigarettes? Well, their manufacturers would like you to know them simply as the "tar-free and safe alternative to smoking" and not ask any further questions. They are tar and tobacco-free, yes, but what they do contain doesn't exactly make them all fuzzy bunnies and lollipops. There's artificial flavoring, vaporized nicotine and, as it turns out, a few other chemicals like diethylene glycol, an ingredient used in antifreeze.

That's why the FDA is (rightly) trying to impose tougher regulations on the product, though they're being met with considerable resistance. Some folks want to see e-cigs regulated as tobacco products, others as a drug or device, and the manufacturers seem intent on keeping their cylindrical cash cows free of any pesky oversight or regulation at all.

Ironically, the Lazich/Fischer post comes out just before the release of a study stating that smoking causes 8,000 deaths statewide each year. Apparently the Lazich/Fischer team wants to maintain or even improve those numbers. For the common good, no doubt.

Either that, or they are just trying to stay on top of their game and maintain their title of Worst Legislator and Worst Legislative Aide.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

That's Not An Easy Feat

Cindy Kilkenny is finding amusement at how Scott Walker's free advertisement crew, aka talk radio, is preparing to jump the shark in their flailing defense of Walker's ineptitude and complete lack of leadership.

However, she cites an accomplishment by Mark Neumann which is not often done:
I’ll be very honest and say that I also hope another mistake like that press release from Neumann never happens again. I’ll also say I’m very impressed Neumann called into the show this afternoon. He made Belling look like an idiot. Oh. Or maybe I should say even more of an idiot. ;)
When you're dealing with someone like Belling, or even Sykes, it's difficult to make them look even more idiotic or foolish than they already do. After all, they are masters at that task.