For the Chairperson of the State Ethics Commission, Lautenschlager sure does turn a blind eye to unethical people who are fellow travelers – not to mention her own ethical issues.
Lautenschlager has worked closely with Foval, and the Wisconsin chapter of the People for the American Way he once led, on election initiatives.
They are among several members of Our Democracy 2020, a coalition of left-wing groups that insists on working together on election reforms. Lautenschlager fought side by side with Foval and others to help defeat a ballot issue that effectively removed liberal state Supreme Court Justice Shirley Abrahamson from the chief justice position she long held, and they have worked on killing Wisconsin’s voter ID law.
Foval included a link to a video of the liberal pep rally launch of Our Democracy 2020 on his Vimeo page.
In a March 2015 story in the liberal Capital Times, days before voters approved the ballot giving the court the power to decide its own chief justice, Lautenschlager and Foval were quoted as saying the referendum was just one big power grab by Republicans.
On Thursday, however, Lautenschlager didn’t want to answer questions about her old friend Foval.
Now THAT’S racist.
NBC affiliate KFOR reported on the controversy last week after receiving a recording from an offended student at Norman North High School.
In the recording, the teacher shows a YouTube clip about imperialism. A man in the video uses white-out on a globe to illustrate how European influence spread across the world.
The discussion follows.
In the recording, the teacher asks: “Am I racist? And I say yeah. I don’t want to be. It’s not like I choose to be racist, but do I do things because of the way I was raised.”
“To be white is to be racist, period,” the teacher says.
Something strange is going on in Washington County government. The accidental loss of money, the odd development of a homeless shelter, and now this from the Washington County Insider. Is there something in the water?
Oct. 20, 2016 – West Bend, WI – Washington County attorney Kimberly A. Nass is not in the office. When questioned about her current status County Board Chairman Rick Gundrum refused comment as did County administrator Joshua Schoemann.Washington County Sheriff Dale Schmidt confirmed he was not conducting any criminal investigation on Nass.Nass, 49, started with the county in the early 1990s as an assistant to Washington County Judge Patrick Faragher.The job of the county attorney according to the county website is “provides legal advice to county board, it’s committees and county departments; drafts and reviews ordinances and resolutions for county board action; advises the county board with respect to parliamentary procedures; prosecutes mental commitment cases, guardianship, protective placement/services cases, termination of parental rights cases and shoreland, wetland, floodplain and sanitary code violations; attends county committee meetings and other county-related meetings; reviews contracts in which the county is a party and commences legal proceedings to collect on outstanding accounts due the county.”There was no comment on when Nass would return.Attempts have been made to contact Nass. This is the response received to the email.I am out of the office. Please contact the County Attorney’s Office at 262-335-4374.
Results from Wisconsin’s newest standardized math and English tests released Tuesday show just over 42 percent of the state’s public school third- through eighth-graders scored proficient or above on each exam. Proficiency rates for students enrolled in three state-run private school choice programs were 19.1 percent for English and 14 percent for math.
The Wisconsin Forward Exam was the second new set of standardized tests students took in the last two years. Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction officials said a team of 100 Wisconsin educators raised cutoff scores for proficiency this year to better align with more rigorous national expectations, leading to a decline in the portion of students scoring at proficient or higher compared to last year.
Viji Somasundaram, director of DPI’s Office of Student Assessment, said the decline is a reflection of the more rigorous standards, not an indication of a drop in student performance.
Meeting a proficient or advanced benchmark means the student is at or above where the state expects the student to be at a given grade, according to the DPI.
I’ll be over on Twitter having a little fun. @bootsandsabers
UPDATE: Well, that escalated quickly! My overall conclusion is that America is screwed. So, so, screwed.
I was unable to watch the debate last night between Senator Ron Johnson and challenger Russ Feingold. In reading the coverage of it this morning, one thing continues to stick out to me that I mentioned in my column a few weeks ago. Feingold is running a campaign from 1992. His rhetoric is to old. So tired. So worn. He is utterly vapid with seemingly nothing new to offer other than to warm Wisconsin’s senate seat with musty farts and occasionally belch out Che quotes. For example, take this:
Dem Russ Feingold on Tuesday knocked U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson for taking a $700,000 salary from his former plastics company, but voting against efforts to raise the minimum wage.
Really? I saw his TV commercial about this too, but really? This is just rank class warfare. It’s not even pretending to be nuanced. If you planning to vote for Feingold because you are jealous of Johnson’s salary – which he earned in the private sector – then you are too stupid to vote. But I guess that’s the electorate to which Feingold is appealing.
From the email… this should be interesting!
Are you tired of hearing Trump VS Clinton? Do you wish there were other options?
Well, next Wednesday (Oct 26th) at 7PM at the West Bend Moose Lodge we will be having our “Presidential Forum”, where representatives from the Libertarian Gary Johnson and Independent Evan McMullin campaigns will be stopping by to tell you their candidates positions on the issues and how they plan to win in this tumultuous election.
It would be true to form.
The ex-agent told the FBI that they were aware of Clinton or her aides ‘removing lamps and furniture from the State Department which were transported to her residence in Washington, D.C.’
The female agent did not know whether the items were returned, the FBI noted.
The claim is particularly resonant for the Clintons, who left the White House with massive amounts of furniture and other items which they then either returned – including sofas, a chair, and an ottoman – or paid for.
In total they declared $190,000 in gifts as they left the White House, but ended up paying $86,000 in cash and handing back $48,000 worth of items – after public outrage at what they had done.
The State Department denied the ex-agent’s allegation, saying it was ‘not true’ and that the items removed from the building had been paid for by the then Secretary of State.
It’s good to see some accountability. It doesn’t appear that there was any malice involved, but poor management of the people’s money requires sanction of some sort. Given that she is an elected official, there’s not much that the board can do to her.
Oct. 18, 2016 – West Bend, WI – During the next Washington County Board meeting, Tuesday, Oct. 25, a resolution vote of ‘No Confidence’ in County Treasurer Jane Merten will be brought before Supervisors.
The resolution stems from a pair of wire transfers that occurred June 1, 2016 when Merten sent two separate wire transfers to fraudulent accounts. The total was $87,760, although the Washington County Sheriff said half of that never went through.
As a result $32,163.76 was returned to Washington County on Sept. 15, 2016.
Merten is up for reelection and her name is on the Nov. 8 ballot. She is running uncontested.
District 21 Supervisor Donald Kriefall initiated the resolution for a ‘no confidence’ vote. His comments are below.
“As an elected official we’re limited in what we can do in our scope of authority over another elected official. If it would have been an administrator or county employee there would have been disciplinary action taken, up and including termination.”
Wow. Just. Wow. This is a well financed, highly organized, deliberate effort to undermine our elections being orchestrated by the very highest operatives within the Democratic Party and the Liberal Establishment.
MADISON, Wis. (AP) – A new report shows the state finished the last fiscal year in the black.
Gov. Scott Walker’s Department of Administration released a report Monday showing the state finished the year that ended June 30 with $313.8 million left over.
The report says the state collected $15.1 billion in general-purpose revenue taxes, which include individual and corporate income taxes, sales tax and excise taxes. That’s up 3.8 percent from the previous year.
Expenditures total $15.3 billion, $103 million less than the $15.4 billion allocated for spending in the state budget.
State aid to municipalities and school districts accounted for 51 percent of spending. Aid to individuals and organizations represented 25.8 percent.
My column for the West Bend Daily News is online. Here it is:
For the first time in my life, I am sitting here in the middle of October of a presidential election year and I do not know for whom I will vote for President of the United States. Yet, choices must be made and the consequences will be felt.
I am a firm believer that one of the responsibilities of citizenship is to inform oneself and vote even when the choices on the ballot are poor. Our electoral system does not allow for do-overs or “none of the above.” Someone will actually win the election and assume power. The voters will decide who that will be and it is my responsibility to express my choice through the ballot box.
Often, perhaps far too often, this choice comes down to choosing the better of two evils. That is the determination many are trying to make this year between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. But as I consider these two choices, I cannot discern a lesser of the two. They are just two evils.
Clinton is one of the most corrupt people in American politics. Her decades in public life have shown her to be a liar whose overriding motivations are rooted in her own advancement. Repeated disclosures have catalogued how she has violated federal law, used the Clinton Foundation as a vehicle to trade money for favors when she was secretary of state, exposed our national secrets to hostile foreign governments, and attacked the women whom her husband allegedly sexually assaulted. She is a vile person who will abuse the office of president for her personal gain and to advance policies detrimental to the United States.
Donald Trump, who was a liberal New York Democrat until he decided he wanted to run for president, has also spent decades in public life swaddling himself with dishonor. He is also a proven liar who has no scruples about trampling the people and institutions around him for his personal advancement. His willful and unapologetic ignorance of the basic tenets of the Constitution, the separation of powers, international affairs, and the basic duties and limits of the executive leave little doubt that President Trump would cast off any remaining moorings of the American presidency.
Many of my fellow conservatives have weighed and measured the two candidates differently and concluded that Trump is a tolerable choice. Some of them argue that the eventual appointments to the Supreme Court and Trump’s mouthing of support for some conservative principles tip the scale. While I understand and respect those arguments and the people making them, it is not a path I can walk with them this time. In Wisconsin, at least, it is a discussion that is more philosophical than tangible. Wisconsin will vote for Clinton irrespective of how the conservative minority splits their votes.
The history of governments amongst people is replete with examples of bad, corrupt, evil leaders in both representative and other forms of government. We will survive and build for ourselves a better future after this setback. It is critical that we build a bulwark against the excesses of a tyrannical presidency by electing strong Conservatives to the House and Senate like Sen. Ron Johnson, Speaker Paul Ryan and representatives Glenn Grothman, Sean Duffy, Mike Gallagher and Jim Sensenbrenner. While that is true in any election, it is paramount in this one.
By the time Election Day is upon us, I will exercise my franchise for the least offensive choice for president and it will likely be for one of the third party candidates. Then I will pray for our nation to fight off the worst excesses of our next president as we look to build a brighter future.
Victor Davis Hanson, a man whom I respect and whose histories outshine even his political writings, makes the conservative argument for Trump. Read the whole thing.
Nor is the election a choice even between four more years of liberalism and a return of conservatism; it’s an effort to halt the fundamental transformation of the country. A likely two-term Clinton presidency would complete a 16-year institutionalization of serial progressive abuse of the Constitution, outdoing even the twelve years of the imperial Roosevelt administration. The WikiLeaks revelations suggest an emboldened Hillary Clinton, who feels that a 2016 victory will reify her utopian dreams of a new intercontinental America of open borders and open markets, from Chile to Alaska, in the manner of the European Union expanse from the Aegean to the Baltic.
The ancient idea of tragic irony can sometimes be described as an outcome unfortunately contrary to what should have been expected. Many of us did not vote in the primaries for Trump, because we did not believe that he was sufficiently conservative or, given his polarizing demeanor, that he could win the presidency even if he were. The irony is now upon us that Trump may have been the most conservative Republican candidate who still could beat Hillary Clinton — and that if he were to win, he might usher in the most conservative Congress, presidency, and Supreme Court in nearly a century.
I’m just going to leave this here.
In Argentina, home to over 50 million cows, researchers from the Argentina National Institute of Agricultural Technology (INTA) are attempting to use “methane backpacks,” plastic contraptions attached to cows, to capture methane from a cow’s digestive tract. The technology is in its early stages, but so far the backpacks have been able to extract 300 liters of methane a day, enough to power a car or refrigerator, according to INTA.
Despite the humor in the whole image, it is actually a pretty neat idea to try to find a way to capture methane from livestock to use as energy. It is certainly a renewable source and a good use of a natural byproduct of a growing industry.
It’s happening a bit faster than expected, but it was expected nonetheless.
A growing number of people in Obamacare are finding out their health insurance plans will disappear from the program next year, forcing them to find new coverage even as options shrink and prices rise.
At least 1.4 million people in 32 states will lose the Obamacare plan they have now, according to state officials contacted by Bloomberg. That’s largely caused by Aetna Inc., UnitedHealth Group Inc. and some state or regional insurers quitting the law’s marketsfor individual coverage.
t may also mean that instead of growing in 2017, Obamacare could shrink. As of March 31, the law covered 11.1 million people; an Oct. 13 S&P Global Ratings report predicted that enrollment next year will range from an 8 percent decline to a 4 percent gain.
Remember how Obamacare was created, disrupting millions of people and their healthcare, in order to make sure that some 46 million uninsured people got insurance? It didn’t even come close to meeting its goal, but the damage more than exceeded expectations.
A military operation to recapture the Iraqi city of Mosul from so-called Islamic State (IS) has begun, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi says.
An offensive to retake the city, Iraq’s second largest, has been planned for months.
Mosul has been under IS control since June 2014.
Wow. Via the Washington County Insider.
On Sunday, October 16, 2016 at 3:23 A.M. a citizen called West Bend Police Department to report the sound of at least six gun shots in the 200 block of Edgewood Lane.
Officers responded to the area and searched for evidence of shots fired and for possible suspect(s). At approximately 4:20 a.m. two officers observed a man standing in the yard at 228 Edgewood Lane. The man pointed a handgun in the direction of the officers and pulled the trigger.
The gun apparently misfired and the officers were able to retreat to a position of cover. The officers were able to identify the 24 year old male subject from previous encounters with the officers. At 4:22 A.M. and 4:29 A.M. officers heard shots fired from the area of 228 Edgewood Lane. At 4:47 A.M. officers heard two additional shots fired from the yard or house at 228 Edgewood Lane.
West Bend Police Officers and Washington County Sheriff Deputies secured the area and attempted to make contact with the residents at 228 Edgewood Lane. Officers were able to make contact with one subject.
At 8:05 A.M. the 24 year old suspect exited the home. West Bend Police Officers and Washington County Sheriff Deputies took the suspect into custody. He is being held at the Washington County Jail on two counts of Attempt Homicide, and Intoxicated Use of Firearms.
Like I said earlier, there are some real issues out there that are being intentionally ignored during this election. Remember that it was Clinton who was Obama’s Secretary of State during the “reset” with Russia. Well, it worked. We’ve reset it to about 1961.
The next U.S. president will inherit an increasingly fraught relationship with Russia in which Washington’s attempts to deter Putin have mostly failed. Moscow’s decision this month to pull out of a landmark agreement on disposing tons of weapons-grade plutonium, coupled with reports last week that Russia deployed new nuclear-capable missiles to Kaliningrad on the Baltic Sea, underscore how Putin is flexing Russia’s power in new and often unpredictable ways.
U.S. and European officials are increasingly alarmed over Putin’s willingness to risk military confrontation and threaten to use his country’s nuclear arsenal over issues the West sees as unrelated and separate. That makes it devilishly difficult for the United States and its European allies to find an effective response to Putin’s audacious tactics that in recent years range from Russia’s annexation of Crimea, to its air war in support of the Syrian regime, to Moscow’s suspected hacking of America’s presidential election.
“It very much feels like we are entering a very troubled and dangerous phase in this bilateral relationship,“ said Julianne Smith, a former senior Pentagon official who oversaw NATO policy and a former senior advisor to Vice President Joe Biden. “The next president will face some big strategic choices,” said Smith, who now advises Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton on Europe and Russia.
President Barack Obama’s successor will have to choose from a range of unpleasant and risky options when it comes to handling a resurgent Russia, current and former officials said. A more conciliatory stance, aimed at cutting a grand bargain with Russia focused on Ukraine, would defuse tensions in the short term but at the cost of ultimately emboldening Putin. A more hawkish line — like the one championed by Clinton, who is leading nationwide polls — would risk escalation, with the chance of a military showdown in Syria or the Baltics.
Frankly, given that Wisconsin isn’t in play, it is political malpractice for him to come to Wisconsin, but, then again, his campaign has been rife with senseless acts.
MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Donald Trump has canceled one of his two planned Wisconsin campaign stops Monday.
Trump’s Wisconsin spokesman Matt Schuck says a scheduling conflict led to Trump canceling his event in West Allis outside of Milwaukee. Another event in Green Bay on Monday is still on.
It’s the second time a Trump event in Wisconsin has been canceled in recent days. Trump was originally scheduled to attend a rally last weekend in southeast Wisconsin, but House Speaker Paul Ryan disinvited him.
Ryan, Gov. Scott Walker and Sen. Ron Johnson are all skipping Trump’s campaign visit on Monday. Ryan and Walker are both going to be out of state and Johnson’s spokesman said he had prior engagements.