Thursday, April 28, 2011

Tea party now making things cushy for Wall Street.



Wall Street Tames Washington | Truthout

They came, they saw, they conquered. This line pretty well sums up a little-reported but important story about the new tea partiers in the U.S. House of Representatives.

No sooner had they arrived than the corporate lobbying corps came to visit, saw what these supposed rebels were made of and quickly conquered them without a fight. The forces of big business needed only to lay out some campaign cash -- and quicker than you can say, "Business as usual," the budding lawmakers snatched up the money and immediately began carrying the lobbyists' corporate agenda.

Check out the financial services subcommittee, which handles legislation affecting Wall Street bankers. Five tea partiers got coveted slots on this panel, and all five were suddenly showered with big donations from such financial lobbying interests as Goldman Sachs. Now, all five are sponsoring bills to undo parts of the recent reforms to reign in Wall Street excesses.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Of the 1%, by the 1%, for the 1%

Of the 1%, by the 1%, for the 1% | Society | Vanity Fair

While the top 1 percent have seen their incomes rise 18 percent over the past decade, those in the middle have actually seen their incomes fall. For men with only high-school degrees, the decline has been precipitous—12 percent in the last quarter-century alone. All the growth in recent decades—and more—has gone to those at the top. In terms of income equality, America lags behind any country in the old, ossified Europe that President George W. Bush used to deride. Among our closest counterparts are Russia with its oligarchs and Iran.

Teabilly racism is so old school, it’s hard not to laugh at it

A little something for a previous commenter who wasn't sure whether racism is still a problem endemic in American culture and embodied, apparently, in significant numbers, among the Tea Party.


Teabilly racism is so old school, it’s hard not to laugh at it | Angry Black Lady Chronicles



“Niggra race pimps”?


Yeah, have a look at the link.

Palin's Union History

Palin's Union History - The Dish | By Andrew Sullivan - The Daily Beast

She was able to see a union from her house, so....

Welcome to the Tea Party's America

Michigan Teachers Forced To Rely On Food Stamps


The Union of Teaching Faculty reports that Central Michigan University professors are now eligible for government assistance:

CMU has record assets and revenue, but is allocating money to top administrative salaries—some of those for a medical school that doesn’t even exist yet! –Instead of to the underpaid faculty and staff who make CMU work.

CMU’s nontenure-track faculty members are paid so poorly that some of them fall below the federal poverty line—even while working full-time. The University’s current pay proposal for full-time faculty would leave intact the possibility of their needing (and being eligible for) government assistance to get by. 





Gutting services that actually SERVE the interests of the middle class is not "good business".

Sunday, April 17, 2011

We were warned about the Tea Party in 1947

"Hey, that fella's talking about me!"
"It makes a difference doesn't it?"

The unions needed to be smashed, to begin with.

YouTube - Don't Be a Sucker - 1947


Ayn Rand, Hugely Popular Author and Inspiration to Right-Wing Leaders, Was a Big Admirer of Serial Killer


Heed this warning: "What you will read below ... is extremely gory and upsetting, even if you're well acquainted with true crime stories -- so prepare yourself."


A good look at the underlying enthusiasm for cutting off government aid for the poor and helpless.


Ayn Rand, Hugely Popular Author and Inspiration to Right-Wing Leaders, Was a Big Admirer of Serial Killer | Books | AlterNet

The fear that some felt at the time was that these philosophers' dangerous, yet nuanced ideas would fall into the hands of lesser minds, who would bastardize Nietzsche and Schopenhauer and poison the rest of us. This aptly describes Ayn Rand, whose philosophy developed out of her admiration for "Supermen" like Hickman. Rand's philosophy can be summed up by the title of one of her best-known books: The Virtue of Selfishness. She argues that all selfishness is a moral good, and all altruism is a moral evil, even "moral cannibalism," to use her words. To her, those who aren't like-minded sociopaths are "parasites," "lice" and "looters."

But with Rand, there's something more pathological at work. She's out to make the world more sociopath-friendly so that people her hero William Hickman can reach their full potential, not held back by the morality of the "weak," whom Rand despised.







How Many Lies Can Sarah Palin Tell In 15 Minutes? From Wisconsin, Lets Count How Many She Told.

About 14 if you cluster the related groups.

How Many Lies Can Sarah Palin Tell In 15 Minutes? From Wisconsin, Lets Count How Many She Told.

Colbert vs. Kyl and spread of 'misinformation'

Too good not to share.

Colbert vs. Kyl and spread of 'misinformation' - CNN.com

You get the idea. But the problem is much bigger than Jon Kyl. Colbert is going to have to get a bigger hashtag. Because we're heading to a strange place where Daniel Patrick Moynihan's truism "everyone is entitled to their own opinion but not their own facts" no longer applies.

Exhibit B this week: Donald Trump's re-enflaming of the thoroughly discredited birther conspiracy theory. When he repeats this falsehood in interviews, he is too often treated as a man with an unorthodox opinion, not someone repeating a lie on national television.

As a result, more people are duped and the country more divided, not on the many rational reasons to oppose President Obama's policy agenda but on paranoid fantasies cut out of whole cloth.



That last line contains the entire issue. There are plenty of good reasons for people to disagree about--but they being shoved out of the way by ideological goo.

In Uke News: Eddie Vedder, Amanda Palmer and Magnetic Fields Join Ukulele Craze

Eddie Vedder, Amanda Palmer and Magnetic Fields Join Ukulele Craze - NYTimes.com


LIKE everybody else, Eddie Vedder was shocked by what the ukulele could do.

It was the late 1990s and Mr. Vedder was in Hawaii, decompressing after a tour with his band, Pearl Jam, when one of those modest, four-stringed instruments caught his eye in an out-of-the-way drugstore. He bought it, sat down on a nearby case of beer, and picked out a few melodies. It felt good.

“And then a couple of tourists came by and threw 50 cents in the ukulele case,” he said. “And I thought, ‘Wow, there’s something going on here.’ ”

Senator Chris Larson at Grothman Recall Rally 4/16/11 Saukville WI

Senator Chris Larson at Grothman Recall Rally 4/16/11 Saukville WI




Glenn has managed to alienate a lot of his former supporters with the kind of arrogance we saw on CNN and MSNBC.

You're not imagining it: Republican Tea Partiers really are racists.

Proof?

They keep providing it.

Republican Tea Partiers just can't seem to get enough of those Obama/black people/chimpanzee jokes | Crooks and Liars

This is the image e-mailed to her friends by Orange County Republican committeewoman and Tea Party activist Marilyn Davenport.

Gov. Scott Walker Reportedly Planning Financial Martial Law In Wisconsin

Hey! Whatever happened to small government conservatives? We're they all purged as RINOs??


Gov. Scott Walker Reportedly Planning Financial Martial Law In Wisconsin - Rick Ungar - The Policy Page - Forbes
Reports are surfacing that Scott Walker is now preparing his next assault on the democratic political process in the State of Wisconsin.

Following the lead of Michigan GOP Governor Rick Snyder, Walker is said to be preparing a plan that would allow him to force local governments to submit to a financial stress test with an eye towards permitting the governor to take over municipalities that fail to meet with Walker’s approval.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Ryan's hissy fit over Obama's budget. Who’s Serious Now? - NYTimes.co

Krugman, as usual, gets it right.

Who’s Serious Now? - NYTimes.com

Then people who actually understand budget numbers went to work, and it became clear that the [Ryan's] proposal wasn’t serious at all. In fact, it was a sick joke. The only real things in it were savage cuts in aid to the needy and the uninsured, huge tax cuts for corporations and the rich, and Medicare privatization. All the alleged cost savings were pure fantasy.

University Salaries Explorer from The Chronicle of Higher Education

Worth a look.

To see just what kind of parasite I really am, do check out the UW Colleges in the lists.  Look for us toward the bottom.

2011 Salary Explorer - Faculty - The Chronicle of Higher Education

Why have Republicans stopped acting like Wisconsinites? Of course -- They're ZOMBIES!

I had suspected it.


YouTube - WI Rep.Terese Berceau-ZOMBIES!



Walker and Republicans Go Over the Heads of the People and the Courts to Squash Paid Sick Leave

How the New Plutocracy gets around legal inconveniences.


Walker and Republicans Go Over the Heads of the People and the Courts to Squash Paid Sick Leave | The Progressive

More embarrassment for Wisconsin: Someone Has Got To Be Making All This Up.

A list of the craziness.


Wineke: Someone Has Got To Be Making All This Up - Madison News Story - WISC Madison

9 Things The Rich Don't Want You To Know About Taxes

Here's the nicest compendium I've seen.  They cover most of the current conservative fabrications.

9 Things The Rich Don't Want You To Know About Taxes

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Conservative Economists Criticize 'Off The Deep End' Republican Budget

Could it be that real Republicans want control of their party back?

Let us pray.

Conservative Economists Criticize 'Off The Deep End' Republican Budget | TPMDC


The biggest shock came from high-profile economists with GOP leanings, who also criticized it on the merits.

"It doesn't address in any serious or courageous way the issue of the near and medium-term deficit," David Stockman told me in a Thursday phone interview. "I think the biggest problem is revenues. It is simply unrealistic to say that raising revenue isn't part of the solution. It's a measure of how far off the deep end Republicans have gone with this religious catechism about taxes."

Why the United States Is Destroying Its Education System

-- because educated voters are always a threat to plutocracy.


Why the United States Is Destroying Its Education System | Truthout

A nation that destroys its systems of education, degrades its public information, guts its public libraries and turns its airwaves into vehicles for cheap, mindless amusement becomes deaf, dumb and blind. It prizes test scores above critical thinking and literacy. It celebrates rote vocational training and the singular, amoral skill of making money. It churns out stunted human products, lacking the capacity and vocabulary to challenge the assumptions and structures of the corporate state. It funnels them into a caste system of drones and systems managers. It transforms a democratic state into a feudal system of corporate masters and serfs

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Remember when...

Just for nostalgia's sake: Remember when teachers, public employees, Planned Parenthood, and PBS crashed the stock market, wiped out half of our 401Ks, took trillions in TARP money, spilled oil in the Gulf of Mexico, gave themselves billions in bonuses, and paid no taxes?

Yeah, me neither.

Alberta Darling: I Don’t Listen to People at Hearings on Walker Budget

Alberta Darling: I Don’t Listen to People at Hearings on Walker Budget

Of course not. Why would she want to represent their interests?

[snippet]
Darling Also Says She Knowingly Scheduled Meetings When Working Families Couldn’t Attend

MADISON – It’s shocking in its candor, but Joint Finance Committee Chairwoman Alberta Darling, whose committee is now holding a series of hearings and public meetings around the state of Wisconsin, is now acknowledging she has no interest in the voices of those who show up to testify at her public hearings. Just last night, hundreds were turned away in West Allis, as Darling and other legislators scurried away from the crowd still waiting to testify on Walker’s budget.

Shamefully, Darling admits she believes the voices at her hearings have no meaning because the verdict on Scott Walker’s budget was pre-judged last November by a “silent majority”:

[Sen. Alberta Darling] “a committee co-chairwoman, said most people express their budget preferences at the ballot box, rather than by coming to committee hearings. ‘There is a silent majority,’ Darling said.”

Except that Scott Walker’s extreme and dangerous agenda for Wisconsin – reflected both in his budget repair bill and his draconian cuts to critical state services – was explicitly not discussed during the last election. Nevertheless, Darling has said she’d “absolutely” vote for Scott Walker’s budget repair bill again, despite hundreds of thousands who have voiced opposition and are now pushing to recall her over that very vote to assault workers’ rights.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Eric Cantor to Poor and Middle Class: Die. | Crooks and Liars

Not all Americans, only most Americans.

Eric Cantor to Poor and Middle Class: Die. | Crooks and Liars

CANTOR: In terms of the baseline, that is correct…What we’re saying is there is so much imposition of a mandate that doesn’t relate to the actual quality of care. We believe if you put in place the mechanism that allow for personal choice as far as Medicare is concerned, as well as the programs in Medicaid, that we can actually get to a better resolve and do what most Americans are learning how to do, which is to do more with less.

What’s Really Driving America’s Budget Deficit In One Chart

It's the Plutocracy, dummy. That's what.


What’s Really Driving America’s Budget Deficit In One Chart

Executive Pay Soars in 2010

Pulling their fair share means lower taxes plus big pay bonuses.

Executive Pay Soars in 2010 - NYTimes.com


So far, this recovery has not trickled down. After two relatively lean years, C.E.O.’s in finance, technology, energy and beyond are pulling down multimillion-dollar paychecks. What many of these executives aren’t doing, however, is hiring. Unemployment, although down from its peak, stood at 8.8 percent in March. And few economists predict the jobless rate will drop substantially anytime soon.
For the average C.E.O., however, the good times have returned. The median pay for top executives at 200 major companies was $9.6 million last year. That was a 12 percent increase over 2009, according to a study conducted for The New York Times by Equilar, a compensation consulting firm based in Redwood City, Calif.

FreakOutNation » Sweden With Entitlements & Health Care Surpasses America Economically

When corporations work for people good things happen.

Sweden With Entitlements & Health Care Surpasses America Economically

The World Economic Forum (WEF), which two years ago, gave America the top spot on the scale, last year awarded that spot to Switzerland, now both Singapore and Sweden have forged ahead leaving the States eating their dust.

13,500 people were surveyed in 139 countries. Due to a “weakening of public and private institutions” the U.S. lost its lead. Data crunchers state, “Lingering concerns about the state of its financial markets” to also be worrisome.

Sweden, by comparison, has “the world’s most transparent and efficient public institutions, with very low levels of corruption and undue influence.” Loosely translated this means, “Some aspects of Socialism rock, whereas a Capitalistic society full of political, partisan cronyism, ain’t working.”

Saturday, April 09, 2011

Glenn Grothman: now desperate and lying to save his skin?

Glenn's been sending out pleas for help that include increasingly hilarious, and vicious, lies.

I guess it's not surprising and I feel weirdly honored to be lied about like this.

It could be, of course, that he simply wants the money.... hard to say.

Here's the latest.

From Apr 9, 2011 Grothman Letter

Thursday, April 07, 2011

Grothman urges DNR to hire older workers - JSOnline

To a Glenn with a hammer, everything looks like a nail.

Grothman urges DNR to hire older workers - JSOnline

Madison -- Sen. Glenn Grothman advised the Department of Natural Resources on Monday to consider hiring people in their 40s and 50s because he believes younger workers don't have an understanding of the costs of regulation on the private sector.

Brain structure differs in liberals, conservatives: study | The Raw Story

I think we all knew this. ;^)


Brain structure differs in liberals, conservatives
"Liberals have more gray matter in a part of the brain associated with understanding complexity, while the conservative brain is bigger in the section related to processing fear, said the study on Thursday in Current Biology."

Wednesday, April 06, 2011

Views on Evolution, Intelligent Design Hinge on Death Anxiety | Smart Journalism. Real Solutions. Miller-McCune.

So, our Creationist school board members are anxious?

And 40% of Americans are experiencing enough cognitive dissonance to cause migraines?

It all makes sense.

Views on Evolution, Intelligent Design Hinge on Death Anxiety | Smart Journalism. Real Solutions. Miller-McCune.

It may be the foundation of modern biology, but fewer than 40 percentof Americans say they believe in thetheory of evolution. While frustrated scientists sometimes blame religion for this knowledge gap, newly published research suggests the key factor isn’t faith per se but rather a benefit it provides that Darwin does not: A sense that our all-too-short lives have meaning.

A Canadian study just published in the journal PLoS ONE finds a strong link between existential angst and reluctance to embrace the theory of evolution. A team of researchers led by University of British Columbia psychologist Jessica Tracy report reminders of our mortality apparently inspire antagonism toward this basic scientific precept.

Monday, April 04, 2011

How Ayn Rand ruined my childhood - Real Families

Finally, the victims start to speak out.

How Ayn Rand ruined my childhood - Real Families - Salon.com

Leader Of Koch Front Group Is Behind Ads Supporting Wisconsin Justice David Prosser

More shocks. Koch money hiding behind local blind.


Leader Of Koch Front Group Is Behind Ads Supporting Wisconsin Justice David Prosser

For starters:

As of last Friday, just three groups have spent nearly $1.4 million to keep Gov. Scott Walker’s (R) ally David Prosser on the Wisconsin Supreme Court — 40 percent more than Prosser’s opponents have spent to defeat him. Moreover, new evidence unearthed by the Center for Media and Democracy suggests that Prosser’s advantage comes from a familiar source. Nearly $400,000 of Justice Prosser’s support comes from Citizens for a Strong America (CSA), a group with close ties to the billionaire Koch brothers:

[E]ven though Citizens for a Strong America lists no staff on its website,its website name was purchased by John W. Connors of Milwaukee, who has been a leader of “Americans for Prosperity,” a right-wing group chaired by oil billionaire David Koch. On the domain registration through “Go Daddy!,” the holder of the web address listed is for Connors and the business address is listed as 1126 S 70th Street, Suite S420, in Milwaukee, along with a gmail address. … This address is the same street address as Americans for Prosperity (AFP) in Wisconsin. AFP is listed as holding offices on the second floor of that building. It is not clear how many suites in the building are leased by AFP. [...]

In other documents on the web about him, Connors’ work email address is listed as at afphq.org and he is described as involved in grassroots campaigns and marketing for AFP. He has been with AFP for a couple of years. During college, Connors interned for Walker and worked on his campaign.

CSA also shows the same kind of disregard for the truth that is typical of Koch-funded operations. Their flagship ad accused Prosser’s opponent, prosecutor JoAnne Kloppenburg, of jailing an 80 year-old farmer, and was labeled “ridiculously false” by a leading non-partisan fact-checking site.

Running From the Law: Trouble in Wisconsin for Republicans

You can always spot the authoritarians by one symptom: disregard for the rule of law.

So, like us.

Running From the Law: Trouble in Wisconsin for Republicans


The Republicans in Wisconsin, led by the hubris of Gov. Walker, have made a real mess of things for the state, the people, but also for themselves. With Governor Walker’s entire career hanging in the balance, he and the Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald attempted to push through the anti-union bill late on a Friday night, without notice to the public. Now the Republicans are on the run from the law.
When a judge ruled that it appeared the plaintiff in a case against their passage of the bill would prevail, and so ordered the bill not to be published into law, the Republicans violated the court order by having it published by another entity. The judge came back with a second court order. The cowboys said they were going to do as they pleased in spite of the court order, but then the judge clarified her position and suddenly the boys got into line. Third time is a charm, apparently.
And so the bill is not law yet. The judge is now hearing testimony about how the Republicans originally passed the law and it’s clear they have violated the open meeting law, as alleged. They are now claiming legislative immunity in order to avoid the lawsuit.

The Truth About Climate Change, Still Inconvenient \

‎"It's difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends on his not understanding it."

The Truth About Climate Change, Still Inconvenient - NYTimes.com

Sunday, April 03, 2011

Koch Brothers' Heavy Hand Behind Anti-Kloppenburg Ad

A nice bit of digging into CSA...

Is that a West Bend connection? Owen, is that you?


Cognitive Dissidence: Koch Brothers' Heavy Hand Behind Anti-Kloppenburg Ad, Everything Else In Wisconsin


A shadowy group called Citizens for a Strong America (CSA) has run an TV ad against JoAnne Kloppenburg, a candidate for the Wisconsin Supreme Court. Said ad was recently evaluated by PolitiFact Wisconsin and was found to be "ridiculously false" and was thus given the dubious "Pants on Fire" rating.

The article, besides evaluating the ads factual correctness, also pointed out an issue of question regarding CSA:



Oh, and from there it gets even more interesting. Tip of the hat to CD!

Mp

Speaking of the original Tea Party: Beware the East India Company! [and corporate tax breaks!]

Hey, why isn't the current Tea Party opposed to massive corporate tax breaks too?



Even the WSJ sees it: New Civil War erupts, led by super rich, GOP

Except, of course, it's really about 30 years old now...

New Civil War erupts, led by super rich, GOP Paul B. Farrell - MarketWatch

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. (MarketWatch) — Yes, “there’s class warfare, all right,” warns Warren Buffett. “But it’s my class, the rich class, that’s making war, and we’re winning.” Yes, the rich are making war against us. And yes, they are winning. Why? Because so many are fighting this new American Civil War between the rich and the rest.

Not just the 16 new GOP governors in Wisconsin, Michigan, Ohio, Florida, and across America fighting for new powers. Others include: Chamber of Commerce billionaires, Koch brothers, Forbes 400, Karl Rove’s American Crossroads, Grover Norquist’s Americans for Tax Reform — which now has 97% of House Republicans and 85% of the GOP Senators signed on his “no new taxes” pledge — the Tea Party and Reaganomics ideologues.

Story - About the Budget Repair Bill, as told by a Republican police officer

Speaks for itself.

Story - About the Budget Repair Bill, as told by a Republican police officer
I still voted nearly always republican. I supported capitalism and although slightly envious of Kevin and his success, I never once thought that he should not have more than me. I was never one to take the hard left socialist view of taking from the rich, and “redistributing” to the poor. I got to see the welfare leaches at work all the time. Got that public assistance card and section 8 housing, but still could seem to have enough money for the 55” flat panel TV, cable internet, and plenty of beer and cigarettes. Under the democrats, it seemed like Wisconsin was “open for business”, but the business was crime and welfare seekers from Illinois. Time to close the border and make Wisconsin a lot less appealing to the free loaders, I thought.

Vote for Walker to straighten up this mess!! Yes! Yes, I did. I voted for Walker to be tough on crime as republicans historically are. End this Doyle / Raemish early release crap! End traffic stop collection data. End crazy spending and balance the budget.

Then February 11th came. Governor Walker, the man I voted for. The man who was going to put Doyle to bed and turn the ship around, spoke. His budget repair bill was announced and it was the shot heard around the country. He was now calling ME the haves, for being a public employee! I was the problem that the state is broke from my huge amounts of income and my retirement account. ME?? I thought. All of a sudden, I am the bad guy because I work for “the big bad government”. For 25 years, I was the “have not” while Kevin was the “have”. In a matter of days, I was now the reason that Kevin lost his house. We talked about the situation and he became upset that I still had my little house while he did not! He cried “foul” that “his tax dollars” padded my pockets while he had to work for all his money. “I didn’t work for my money?”, I thought.

Saturday, April 02, 2011

The Real History of the Tea Party... why knowing history matters.

It's worth the 15 minutes.

Thom Hartmann Tells the Real History of the Tea Party | Crooks and Liars

This Thom Hartmann segment about the history of the Boston Tea Party and the spark that lit the movement is extraordinarily enlightening. Multinational corporations were controlling the people, and the government was supporting the corporations. In particular, the East India Company sparked rebellion, since they were given so many exemptions, tax preferences and other breaks by the British government.

With plenty of interesting differences between him and Kloppenburg, Prosser's people decide to lie?

This seems to be a pattern on Team WMC these days... resorting to complete nonsense when they could win on the merits of a case.

Maybe this is why Prosser's honorary campaign chair walked away from the campaign. Character is, after all, an issue.

Not the sort of thing we expect to see in politics these days.

Anyway, here's the lie ^H^H^H misstatement.

PolitiFact Wisconsin | Ad says JoAnne Kloppenburg jailed an 80-year-old farmer for refusing to plant native vegetation on his farm


Citizens for a Strong America claimed in a TV ad that Kloppenburg "put an 80-year-old farmer in jail for refusing to plant native vegetation on his farm." Wayne Hensler did refuse to plant native vegetation and he was 80 when he went to jail. But it is impossible for Kloppenburg -- or any attorney -- to put someone in jail.

What’s more, the ad leaves out 11 years’ worth of context. Hensler repeatedly ignored orders from county and state officials -- and then from a court -- to remedy an erosion problem. He was found in contempt of court three times by two different judges. And when Hensler was finally put behind bars, it was on the order of a judge for contempt of court, not merely refusing to plant native vegetation. Kloppenburg didn’t even request the jail time.

The claim against Kloppenburg is ridiculously false.

We rate it Pants on Fire.

CEO pay soars while workers' pay stalls - USATODAY.com

Nice to know that CEO's are looking after their workers! I guess charity begins at home.

CEO pay soars while workers' pay stalls - USATODAY.com

The heads of the nation’s top companies got the biggest raises in recent memory last year after taking a hiatus during the recession.

At a time most employees can barely remember their last substantial raise, median CEO pay jumped 27% in 2010 as the executives’ compensation started working its way back to prerecession levels, a USA TODAY analysis of data from GovernanceMetrics International found. Workers in private industry, meanwhile, saw their compensation grow just 2.1% in the 12 months ended December 2010, says the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Two years of scaling back amid tough economic times proved temporary as three-quarters of CEOs got raises in 2010 — and, in many cases, the increases were substantial.


Friday, April 01, 2011

Huckabee Says He Wants Americans To Be Indoctrinated At Gunpoint

Seriously.


Huckabee Says He Wants Americans To Be Indoctrinated At Gunpoint by David Barton | Video Cafe


Mike Huckabee Says He Wants Americans To Be Indoctrinated At Gunpoint:
Did Mike Huckabee just flush his presidential aspirations down the proverbial toilet? Well, if American mainstream media has an ounce of journalistic gumption remaining the answer most certainly would be “yes”. Huckabee has just been caught on video, at a Christian supremacist conference, stating that Americans should be forcibly indoctrinated at gunpoint. The organization which hosted the “Rediscover God In America” conference, United in Purpose, has edited Huckabee’s comment from footage of his speech, but not before People For The American Way’s Kyle Mantyla captured the unedited footage, in which Mike Huckabee states, “I almost wish that there would be, like, a simultaneous telecast, and all Americans would be forced–forced at gunpoint no less–to listen to every David Barton message, and I think our country would be better for it. I wish it’d happen.”

The Koch Brothers Are Getting Nervous - Technorati Politics

A lot of the Big Government Social conservative push back is starting to look fear driven....

The bugs don't like it when the lights are finally turned on.

The Koch Brothers Are Getting Nervous - Technorati Politics

Charles and David Koch seem less confident these days. The brothers – who inherited money from their dad and grew it into America’s largest collection of dirty industries – have decided they need to fight back. That’s not surprising. Since Koch-sponsored secret meetings were revealed, secret planning with Supreme Court Justices was exposed, and secret funding of right wing groups became apparent, Americans have begun to wonder just how much influence these guys have purchased.

America has now heard of the Koch Brothers.

But that’s not all. A Google search of “Boycott Koch” reveals “about 907,000” pages. Many of these sites include a list of brands owned by the Kochs. Just type the word “boycott” into a Facebook search and Koch Industries pops up first. There appears to be a growing interest shunning Koch brands.

This week, Koch Industries opened a counteroffensive. But you may not have noticed. In a style harking back to the early 1900s, these puppet masters of public opinion began their counter-offensive indirectly.

Read more: http://technorati.com/politics/article/the-koch-brothers-are-getting-nervous/#ixzz1IKiZOblA

Fitzgeralds can only blame selves

With about a gazillion clever -- and LEGAL -- tricks available to the majority party, including simply using their majority to pass a bill, for which they had a majority of the required votes, the Republican leadership... for reasons of what -- hubris? ... had to go around the law.

... did I say that already? They didn't have to act illegally but did anyway?

And here we are.

Fitzgeralds can only blame selves

The Fitzgerald brothers are complaining loudly about a Dane County judge holding up their collective bargaining bill.

But it's their own fault for winding up in court to begin with.

Had Assembly Speaker Jeff Fitzgerald and Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald simply given 24 hours of public notice before a key committee meeting and vote last month, their bill would now be in effect.

Instead, because the Fitzgeralds got cute with Wisconsin's open meetings law, the bill is stuck in an exhausting and complex legal battle that could drag on for weeks if not months.

Wisconsin budget would balance without union law

Report: Wisconsin budget would balance without union law | The Oshkosh Northwestern | thenorthwestern.com

MADISON, Wis. (AP) - A new analysis shows that as long as lawmakers approve a budget fix bill proposed by Gov. Scott Walker the state’s budget would be balanced even if the collective bargaining law currently on hold doesn’t take effect.

The nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau analysis released Friday shows that the bill expected to be passed Tuesday would balance the budget currently projected to be $137 million short by July 1.

The collective bargaining law currently in limbo would save the state about $30 million through higher state worker benefit contributions.



I suppose the Republicans in Madison, like their counterparts in Washington, will now have to claim that their own official state budget office is untrustworthy and that only a bunch of surly partisan Koch-addicts can reasonably be expected to perform accurate budget analysis.

I'm guessin'. Let's see if it takes them as long as it took Van Hollen to flipflop on the Open Meeting law.

Darling-Hammond: U.S. vs highest-achieving nations in education


Darling-Hammond: U.S. vs highest-achieving nations in education


The contrasts to the American attitude toward teachers and teaching could not have been more stark. Officials from countries like Finland and Singapore described how they have built a high-performing teaching profession by enabling all of their teachers to enter high-quality preparation programs, generally at the masters’ degree level, where they receive a salary while they prepare. There they learn research-based teaching strategies and train with experts in model schools attached to their universities. They enter a well-paid profession – in Singapore earning as much as beginning doctors -- where they are supported by mentor teachers and have 15 or more hours a week to work and learn together – engaging in shared planning, action research, lesson study, and observations in each other’s classrooms. And they work in schools that are equitably funded and well-resourced with the latest technology and materials.

Rep. Robin Vos pushes UW to discipline faculty over email

Suppose faculty in the public health department wrote emails about an epidemic that was caused by one political party dragging its feet for ideological or religious reasons. Would email in that department on this political topic, surely likely to cause a change in how people might vote, be a violation of the proper use policies? Or wouldn't they, in fact, have a civic obligation as the state's leading experts on epidemics, to say something using state resources?

It seems more likely that Rep. Vos doesn't really understand the relevance ... and utility to the taxpayer... of academic freedom.

Capitolisms » Rep. Robin Vos pushes UW to discipline faculty over email

Vos told Reilly it’s the university system’s responsibility to “ensure that taxpayers are not subsidizing political activism in the name of academic freedom.

“I am a big believer in academic freedom, but organizing for and against collective bargaining seems to me to not be a wise use of taxpayer dollars,” Vos said. “And many of the emails I have gotten have the last part (.edu), where I know where they came from, and I look at the time and I kind of scratch my head and think, maybe they’re walking over the line.”

Death anxiety linked to acceptance of intelligent design

Interesting. Fear is usually a good explanation for irrational views..


Death anxiety linked to acceptance of intelligent design: study | The Raw Story

Research conducted at the University of British Columbia and Union College found that people's death anxiety was associated with support of intelligent design and rejection of evolutionary theory.

Death anxiety also influenced those in the study to report an increased liking for Michael Behe, a prominent proponent of intelligent design, and an increased disliking for Richard Dawkins, a well-known evolutionary biologist.

The findings suggest that people are motivated to believe in intelligent design and doubt evolutionary theory because of unconscious psychological motives.

The study was lead by UBC Psychology Assistant Professor Jessica Tracy and and UBC psychology PhD student Jason Martens. It was published in the March 30 issue of the open access journal PLoS ONE.

"Our results suggest that when confronted with existential concerns, people respond by searching for a sense of meaning and purpose in life," Tracy said. "For many, it appears that evolutionary theory doesn't offer enough of a compelling answer to deal with these big questions."

Something to consider:


Big Government Social Conservatives have ideas about how the world is supposed to work, and they are about their Master's business.



Republicans reignite the reason for unions. The War On Child Labor Laws: Maine Republicans Want Longer Hours, Lower Pay For Kids

Of course they do. You know, children have nimbler fingers than adults and can more easy operate small and delicate machinery -- plus, you don't have to pay them as much.

Oh, and really, what do they need school for when they could be working...

ThinkProgress » The War On Child Labor Laws: Maine Republicans Want Longer Hours, Lower Pay For Kids


Maine State Rep. David Burns is the latest of many Republican lawmakersconcerned that employers aren’t allowed to do enough to exploit child workers:

LD 1346 suggests several significant changes to Maine’s child labor law, most notably a180-day period during which workers under age 20 would earn $5.25 an hour.

The state’s current minimum wage is $7.50 an hour.

Rep. David Burns, R-Whiting, is sponsoring the bill, which also wouldeliminate the maximum number of hours a minor over 16 can work during school days.