Boots & Sabers

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0645, 30 Oct 18

Keep Wisconsin moving forward

My column for the Washington County Daily News is online. Here’s the thrust:

Walker, Vukmir and Schimel have all helped make Wisconsin a great place to live and work. They deserve our votes. More importantly, we deserve to have them continue to work on our behalf.


0645, 30 October 2018


  1. Kevin Scheunemann

    We need to elect all 3.

    Getting rid of Baldwin would be outstanding!

  2. Le Roi du Nord

    If WI backsliding on environment, transportation and education is moving forward, we must have vastly different dictionaries…..

  3. Kevin Scheunemann


    Give me a break, all 3 are doing very well thanks to Walker.

  4. Le Roi du Nord

    If you consider ranking 49th nationally in environment, fish and wildlife (WAFWA, MAFWA, CSU, OSU); or 49th in transportation infrastructure (ASCE) as doing very well then I can’t argue with you.  But most folks would like to see better performance from state agencies.  I know I do.  But you have set the bar pretty low on lots of issues so I’m not surprised.

    As far as education goes I just used your constant criticism of WI education as my cue.  You must have changed your mind recently.  My bad for believing you.

  5. Kevin Scheunemann


    Education is thriving because of school choice and competition.

    Public schools seem to lag.

    I have been in municipal service long enough to never trust engineers on anything. They will stick it to taxpayer every chance they get. Hard for me to get worked up on their BS ranking.

    Same reaction to any ranking on environment by liberals, they have a twisted radical agenda most of time that destroys property rights and taxpayer.

    So I see nothing but positives for Walker.

  6. Le Roi du Nord

    Yup, no fooling a smart guy like you, is there?  But who designs your municipal projects, your cat?  Guess I’ll never drive on a bridge in your village.  Wouldn’t be prudent.

    Another quote that fits well:

    “There are none so blind as those who cannot see”.

  7. Kevin Scheunemann


    Yes, because I protect the taxpayers from engineers over-designing and raking the taxpayers automatically means I support unsafe bridges.

    It is that type of precise liberal nonsense is why Trump got elected.

  8. Le Roi du Nord

    So, who does design your projects?  If your cat does it your constituents should be concerned.

  9. Mark Hoefert

    Yeah, put your faith in the infallibility of civil engineers.

    The I-35 bridge collapse in Minnesota in 2007 – 13 people killed by bad civil engineers.


    Although the I-35W bridge had been inspected in accordance with the 18.
     National Bridge Inspection Standards and more frequently than required by the standards, these inspections would not have been expected to detect design errors.

    Although the I-35W bridge had been rated under the National Bridge Inspection Standards as Structurally Deficient for 16 years before the accident, the conditions responsible for that rating did not cause or contribute to the collapse of the bridge.

    Probable Cause

    The National Transportation Safety Board determines that the probable cause of the collapse of the I-35W bridge in Minneapolis, Minnesota, was the inadequate load capacity, due to a design error by Sverdrup & Parcel and Associates, Inc., of the gusset plates at the U10 nodes, which failed under a combination of
     (1) substantial increases in the weight of the bridge, which resulted from previous bridge modifications, and (2) the traffic and concentrated construction loads on the bridge on the day of the collapse. Contributing to the design error was the failure of Sverdrup & Parcel’s quality control procedures to ensure that the appropriate main truss gusset plate calculations were performed for the I-35W bridge and the inadequate design review by Federal and State transportation officials. Contributing to the accident was the generally accepted practice among Federal and State transportation officials of giving inadequate attention to gusset plates during inspections for conditions of distortion, such as bowing, and of excluding gusset plates in load rating analyses.

    Perhaps the ASCE is blowing their trumpets about “inadequate infrastructure” because they are trying to beat the clock before their failures manifest in more innocent people getting killed.

  10. Le Roi du Nord

    Yup, one bridge failure and civil engineers can’t be trusted.  Better not EVER drive over another engineer designed bridge again.  Nor fly in a plane, ride in a car or train, or use your computer.

    If one mistake sours you on any profession, you are probably more disgusted than most with the performance of our current leadership, both in Madison and DC.  Enjoy.

  11. Mark Hoefert

    I did not say that engineers can not be trusted – I don’t put faith in their infallibility.

    Here bad engineering killed 100 people:

    Responsible engineers and firms had their licenses revoked, some even went bankrupt. Compensation claims from the courts awarded victims around $140 Million dollars not to mention insurance payouts. This disaster remains a classic model for engineering models, ethics, and errors not to mention disaster management.


  12. Le Roi du Nord

    I never said they were infallible.  And I’m heartened to see you don’t agree with k in this regard, “to never trust engineers on anything”.   Regardless of his opinion, engineers design and build things we all used every single minute, him included.  If he places no trust in engineers he should be living in a cave.  Maybe he is.

  13. Kevin Scheunemann

    Engineers are worse than road builders at bidding up contracts.

    Engineers should all get utmost scrutiny on everything. They should not be running around unchecked with taxpayer checkbook.

  14. Le Roi du Nord

    Why would a conservative  like you be opposed to an engineer or road builder making a profit?  Seems pretty hypocritical in light of your long commenting history.

    Explain if you can how engineers are running around “unchecked with taxpayer checkbook”.  Please provide details.  Facts would be nice.

  15. Kevin Scheunemann

    When engineers make a profit on backs of taxpayers, public officials have a duty to negotiate best deal.

    If left unchecked, and failed to put out to bid, for each project they can charge outrageous sums of money.

    I guess financial raping of taxpayers on this issue is like DNR regulation, you should just let it happen.

  16. Le Roi du Nord

    So you can’t answer the question posed.  No surprise.  Or are you backing away from your original outlandish claim?

    Even the walker DOT has all sorts on controls on engineering fees.  As an elected official you are duty bound to be aware of that.  Too bad for your constituents that you are so unaware.

    And if you haven’t noticed, our incredibly political chamber of commerce DNR has drastically dropped both regulation, and enforcement of what few regulations are left.  You need to keep current.

  17. jjf

    Doesn’t everyone like a little manure runoff in their well water?

  18. Paul

    Because you offered rimjobs on Craigslist does not mean other approve of the activity.

  19. jjf

    I don’t understand your point, Paul.  Does this have something to do with deregulation or non-enforcement of farming operations at CAFOs in counties where the bedrock is largely karst?

  20. Kevin Scheunemann


    I did answer the question.

    Can’t help it that simple comprehension is a challenge for you.


  21. dad29

    Guess I’ll never drive on a bridge in your village.

    Best news Kevin has had all this year!!

  22. dad29

    I don’t put faith in their infallibility.

    Let’s not forget about the pedestrian bridge in Florida which was “an engineering marvel” until it collapsed across SIX lanes of traffic, killing a driver in her car.

    And that was using most-modern standards–it happened within the last 12 months or so.

    Some engineers can be defended.  The guys who designed the aqueducts, or the guys who designed the electricals within the Hoover Dam.  Or the designers of I-H farm equipment.

    All the rest should be questioned.

  23. Le Roi du Nord


    No you didn’t, not even a feeble attempt.

    d:  You would feel differently about IH if you had owned a 460 or 560.  They recalled every one.

  24. Kevin Scheunemann


    You are entitled to your opinion, not your own set of facts.

  25. Le Roi du Nord

    Since you memory is short I’ll pose the question again;

    “Explain if you can how engineers are running around “unchecked with taxpayer checkbook”?  Please provide details.  Facts would be nice.”


  26. jjf

    Nord, it’s simple, just Follow The Logic:

    A few engineers made mistakes, so all engineers are suspect.

    On the other hand, a few gun owners have “accidents” but all gun owners are responsible!

  27. Kevin Scheunemann


    It is very easy in any local municipal project for engineers run amock.   These big muniicpal engineering firms will over-design, let billable hours run and insert thenselves, at great expense into matters where no engineer is needed.

    I’ll give you an example.   In construction of our TIF, and engineer would bill 2 hours to come up to read a gauge, that our public works director could read and email the number in 2 seconds.    That kind of crap is standard procedure for many engineering firms.

    Most big municipal engineering firms are like entitled children, thinking they are master of the municiapl checkbook.

    So you will not get too far with me when you defend tantrum throwing children.

  28. Le Roi du Nord


    So one poor example in your municipality (where you should have been more vigilant) makes all engineers untrustworthy.  Sounds more like poor oversight by the political leaders. weren’t you in charge of negotiating the contract?    And what really surprises me is that you would be opposed to profiteering, being an avowed free market kinda guy.

    Using your rational, why haven’t you made the same claim about POTUS, as he has made all sorts of lies (6000 and counting), misstatements, false accusations, sexual assault, adultery…….   One should be enough, no?

  29. Kevin Scheunemann


    Not just that.

    Our DNR manadated 5 million lift station move….which I VOTED “NO”…was over-designed and over-built.

    It was over-designed and over-built because the engineers felt like they could.    The Board members that voted yes realized just how over-built na dover-designed it was after the fact.

    Same went for our DNR manadated sewer plant…which I also voted “No”.  Same BS, different firm.

    Municipal engineers can be some of the greatest scam artisits in the municipal sphere.    Stop treating them like they are some victim or oppressed class in your world.   They are not.

    They are wolves preying on the taxpayer that need to be put in check.   Liberals seem against that.

  30. jjf

    See, it’s obvious, Nord…  even a fellow who runs an ice cream shop knows more about engineering than anyone who has a degree and experience and required continuing education in the engineering field.

  31. Kevin Scheunemann


    I knew enough to correctly vote “no” on both projects.

    Even some of the “yes” votes” look back with regret because they were sold down the river by municipal engineeers.

    But you liberals want to hold municiapl engineers up as some sort of victim class…typical.

    All that says to me is that you want rich elitists to stick it to the taxpayer.


  32. Le Roi du Nord


    Well it must be tough to always be the victim.  Victimhood follows you around like a dark cloud.

    I do know that in the pre-walker days ALL DNR approved municipal sewer projects needed to pass an extensive  multi-tier review process both for engineering AND need.  Engineering fees and profit also had to  meet criteria if there was state or federal money involved.  The feds (EPA and CoE) were also involved depending on location and funding source.  The local planning commission also weighed in on need.

    I can see several scenarios that would result in your complaint:

    1)  It never happened

    2) You really didn’t understand the level and scope of work done

    3) It happened during the walker administration

    You have made a similar complaint in the past, but refused to provide proof of any of your allegations, which seems to add credence to the “it never happened” scenario, primarily because you would have access to all the relevant contracts, approvals, etc. that would prove your contention.  Your poor file retention doesn’t make your point.

  33. jjf

    Nord, what more proof or detail should you need than Kevin’s word that some other people told him he was right all along?

    I can see why he likes Trump.

  34. Le Roi du Nord

    Exactly !

  35. Kevin Scheunemann

    This all happened during Doyle administration.

    My conscience is clear, I voted against the engineer schemes.

    Seems you embrace them, to taxpayer detriment.

  36. jjf

    Yes, Kevin… if we don’t swallow your anecdote whole, it means we embrace whatever view you think we do!

  37. Le Roi du Nord

    Well, I can’t help you there.  I know how the process worked back then, and it sure doesn’t match  with your single example.  So that leads me to think you situation fits with scenario 1.

    If you wish to prove your point, supply the file proof.  It’s all in your hands.

  38. Kevin Scheunemann


    It’s hilarious, you guys veered off to this subject.

    I give 3 solid examples showing engineers are not as pure and holy you make them out to be, and you guys get worked up because I effectively destroyed your holy grail.

    We do not need more money for infrastructure, we need less scamming of taxpayer on this kind of thing. It has gotten much better under Walker.

    You both sound like you want to return to absurd Doyle days.

    Awful. Just awful.

  39. Le Roi du Nord


    And you gave not one iota of proof of your claim.  But painting an entire profession, religion, ethnicity, etc. with a broad brush without any proof is your MO.  No surprise there.

  40. Kevin Scheunemann


    Take what you want from my warning.

    You sound like a very reckless politician willing to sacrifice the taxpayer at the alter of your leftist elitism.

  41. Le Roi du Nord

    What I take from your nonsense is that you have a pathological need to always be viewed as the smartest person in the room.   And you will stoop as low as needed to bolster your delusion.  When you resort to name-calling and utter falsehoods you leave no room for rational folks to take you seriously.  So carry on without me on this one.

    “alter” ?

  42. jjf

    What’ve you got, Kevin?  All I have so far is your anecdote.  I have no flipping idea if this lift station was over-designed and over-priced.  I, like everyone else in the world who is to the left of you (including Hitler) might be able to agree with you on this point if there was a shred of substance.

    Lord knows there is important non-partisan work to be done on every board and committee from the Drainage Committee of the Town of Bumblefritz, all the way up to Walker’s office.

    Throw me a bone, here.  Point to a PDF, a news article, anything, an email from an expert on lift stations who says this one is too much for what someone says you need because the 45-year-old lift station is falling apart.

    Infrastructure, my word.  When Walker widens another Fox Valley highway, who’s going to pay for its revamp in twenty years?

  43. Kevin Scheunemann


    I only have a need to beat back liberal ignorance.

    Since you provide that in abundance, it makes for a lot of conversation.

  44. Le Roi du Nord

    Yup, your name calling sure makes a compelling case.  And you of all folks shouldn’t play the ignorance card.

  45. Kevin Scheunemann


    I do love a comment that criticizes others for thinking they are the smartest one in the room, WHILE AT SAME TIME INDICATING YOU ARE THE SMARTEST ONE IN THE ROOM!

    Your comment oozes and drips irony.

  46. Le Roi du Nord


    There is a time when some things are correct, regardless of who is in the room.  You have had ample and numerous opportunities to prove your point, and you have access to all the material needed to do so, yet continue to obfuscate.  What are you scared of?  The truth?

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