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Category Archives: Wisconsin

What’s In a Name?

What’s In a Name?

“Who gave you that numb?”
James Joyce, Finnegans Wake

 

 When you think about it, most sports mascots are intrinsically silly.  Cardinals and Orioles are songbirds, not even raptors.  I don’t even know what on earth a seahawk is, but perhaps the “Seattle Ospreys” doesn’t quite convey the punch.  Penguins playing hockey – is that supposed to distract your opponent by giving them the giggles?  Would anybody know that a Bruin is a bear?  Is there any coincidence that the most tragic team in baseball is named after a baby animal – the Cubs?  Why not the Kansas City Kittens or Poughkeepsie Puppies?  And while Miami might have the most perfect season in the history of the NFL, its mascot is the indisputably gay dolphin, with cute turquoise, aqua, and corral colors. Read the rest of this entry »

 

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The Gynecologically Obsessed Party

The Gynecologically Obsessed Party

Where to begin?  Locally or nationally, the batshit has hit the fanfare.  Pregnancies from rape are an anomaly.  Fetuses now masturbate.  And abortions used to be “the thing to do” back in the swinging ’70s.  It goes on —  these were all in just the last week alone.  From Arizona to Texas to Wisconsin, the party that has made a sacrament of individual liberty and freedom from big government continues to quite spectacularly demonstrate strident gibberish in the name of contradicting ideology.  Read the rest of this entry »

 

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Blowing a Bottom Line of Koch

Blowing a Bottom Line of Koch

How’s this for an irony: an independent documentary about the pernicious influence of high-dollar donors gets canceled by PBS due to the influence that a high-dollar donor has on PBS?  The rich white man in this case is none other than David Koch, the multigajillionaire who along with his tycoon-harpooning brother, Charles, and their sprawling empire Koch Industries have brought you such popular hits as: cancer, climate denial, media conglomeration, fat cat plutocrats, conservative politics and tea party histrionics — not to mention mosquitoes, ticks, pestilence, boils, botulism, plagues, famine, flat tires, traffic jams, canker sores, migraines, Svengali-like manipulation, basic obfuscation, and general evil — all in the name of a shameless poweropoly the likes of which would make even Mr Burns envious.  The documentary in question is Citizen Koch, which showcases the effects of the Citizens United Supreme Court decision on the recall election of Scott Walker as well as the admirably quixotic presidential campaign of former Louisiana governor and congressman Buddy Roemer (whose central platform is campaign finance reform), all while following the lives of three Wisconsin state employees whose lifelong ties to the Republican Party are reconsidered in the aftermath of Act 10.  The film was to air on PBS sometime this year on behalf of Independent Television Service (ITVS), the funding and distributing tributary of public television for independent films.  But worried that there would be too much fallout — and lack of funding — ITVS backed out of its deal with the filmmakers, which unwittingly proves the whole point of what the film was about in the first place: the influence of money on public resources.
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Operation Red Scare Map

Operation Red Scare Map

Here’s a scene: a solemn Tuesday evening in the chamber of the House of Representatives, a cold and bitter February in the capital city, and everyone who is anyone in Washington politics is there: the Chief Justice next to the Joint Chiefs, freshman congresswoman from Mesa, Arizona, seated beside the senior senator from Missoula, Montana, as an old hand of the Cabinet from Biscayne Bay walks past the puckish House Clerk from Bayonne, NJ.  Conservatives on the floor are abuzz with anticipation, glad-handing and back-slapping one another for a job well done.  Scattered stand isolated liberals stoically cross-armed with lips still bit from simmering resentment.  The Sergeant at Arms suddenly announces, his voice booming, “Mister Speaker, the President of the United States!”  A thunderous whoop resounds like a crashing wave, and there strides Mitt Romney – President Romney, the 45th President of the United States – on his way to deliver what will be his first State of the Union address.  Somewhere else, unseen from public eye, perhaps keeping the designated survivor company, Republican operatives light a cigar and toast their tumblers of Scotch for having successfully stolen another election.

Such a scenario would be happening tonight if the Republican plan called “Red Map” (technically “the REDistricting MAjority Project,” or REDMAP) had been in effect for the 2012 election.  President Obama, having handsomely won the majority vote, would have nonetheless lost the electoral vote due to a deliberately divisive revisionism by conservatives in an effort to demonstrate that parts of the country are greater than the whole.  Which we know thanks to the post-Beatles offshoots of The Wings or Plastic Ono Band simply is preposterous – the whole is always better than the individual parts.  Maybe I’m amazed, but power to the people – so let it be.

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Mined Over Matter

Mined Over Matter

Since my recent mining redux has generated more comments than any scribble in the nearly two-year-long tenure of this blog — even more than the name-calling, rotten produce throw, shit show that the “Unplanned Parenthood” piece inspired (feel free to seek it out if you’re feeling frisky for a cat fight) — what better idea could there be than continue yet anew with it.  Here’s the gist: Part 1 is about the money behind the mine.  Part 2 makes an argument to support Democratic state Senator Tim Cullen’s alternative mining bill.

Ready, set, Gogebic!

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Undermining Credibility

Undermining Credibility

With only three weeks to go til Valentine’s Day, the Republicans in the State Legislature of Wisconsin are doing what no men ever do: shopping for their beloved before the last minute.  Indeed, in what can only be called a sweetheart deal to both Gogebic Taconite and the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation – the former an out-of-state mining company, the latter a much-flawed private entity (that used to be a public one before Scott Walker took over) – the Republican juggernaut essentially promises what any sugarcoated candy on February 14th does: “be mine.”  Only in this sense it’s not just a command in the possessive sense; it’s also the Republican diktat that the Gogebic mine be.  Corporate profit and bought-off lawmakers, true love if there ever was.
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Borrow Me Some Equality, Yah Hey?

Borrow Me Some Equality, Yah Hey?

In a statewide referendum in 2006 Wisconsin overwhelmingly voted “I do” to the following:

Only a marriage between one man and one woman shall be valid or recognized as a marriage in this state.  A legal status identical or substantially similar to that of marriage for unmarried individuals shall not be valid or recognized in this state.”

71 of Wisconsin’s 72 counties approved this wording, effectively enshrining discrimination in the state constitution.  (The lone holdout was Dane County, where Madison is.)

Six years later Wisconsin once again waxed cognitive dissonance by voting Tammy Baldwin to be the next U.S. Senator — Tammy, the liberal lesbian from Madison — over four-time governor and basic poster child for all things Badger State, Brandy Old Fashioned and all, Tommy Thompson.  (Yes, Tammy versus Tommy.  Tommy Thompson.  In Wisconsin.  Where our other senator is Ron Johnson.  Ron Johnson from Wisconsin.  Who ousted Russ Feingold.  More specifically, Ron Johnson’s from Oshkosh B’gosh pert near da Bay you betcha go you Packers go, oh sure then don’t you know.  Ya wanna come with?  Aw Jeez, for Cripes sakes, W’scansin!  Read the rest of this entry »

 

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