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Archive for May, 2010

Cartoon of the Day

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“Like a Freight Train with Stick’em!”">Like a Freight Train with Stick’em!”

The mid 90s Den­nis Hopper-Sterling Sharpe Nike Com­mer­cial, from Hopper’s “Crazy Ref” series for Nike.

Rest in Peace Den­nis Hop­per, rest in peace.

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Oh How Things Change…

An oldie, but a goodie of a quote I was able to get off the Kagen4Congress web­site in early 2007 before the Kagen Cam­paign sys­tem­at­i­cally scrubbed their web­site of past state­ments. (via the archives of the BBA)

Kagen made the quote in late 2006 dur­ing his first run for Congress.

Apple­ton, WI — Say­ing that pro­fes­sional politi­cians in Wash­ing­ton need to start show­ing more respect for middle-class Wis­con­sin tax­pay­ers, Dr. Steve Kagen today said that a top pri­or­ity for the next Con­gress must be end­ing pork-barrel projects and special-interest spending.

The old Con­gress that left town last week amid scan­dal and con­tro­versy will be replaced on Novem­ber 7 with a new Con­gress,” Dr. Kagen said. “We will stand up for true Wis­con­sin val­ues by bal­anc­ing the fed­eral bud­get, putting an end to pork, and enact­ing strict new spend­ing lim­its to bring down the record deficits we are inheriting.”

Dr. Kagen said Con­gress this ses­sion set records for padding leg­is­la­tion with special-interest spend­ing. Last year, some 15,877 pork projects were slipped into bills, cost­ing tax­pay­ers more than $47 billion.

That’s five times as much pork, at more than twice the cost, as a decade ago and more than last year’s entire $41 bil­lion bud­get for home­land secu­rity,” Dr. Kagen said. “Instead of refo­cus­ing resources on sup­port­ing our troops fight­ing in Afghanistan and Iraq or invest­ing in a more com­pet­i­tive econ­omy, they have squan­dered the tax­pay­ers’ money on special-interest projects.”

This past week­end, in arti­cle on ear­mark spend­ing from the Apple­ton Post-Crescent.

Begin­ning last year, law­mak­ers were required to post their requests for ear­mark fund­ing on their House office Web sites. In Wisconsin’s House delegation:

æ Rep. Steve Kagen, D-Appleton, is ask­ing for $113.7 mil­lion for 73 projects;

æ Rep. Tammy Bald­win, D-Madison, wants $81.8 mil­lion for 72 projects; and

æ Rep. Gwen Moore, D-Milwaukee, is request­ing $550.7 mil­lion for 54 projects.

æ Rep. Ron Kind, D-La Crosse, is not ask­ing for any ear­mark fund­ing this year for eco­nomic reasons.

As our coun­try strug­gles through the most dif­fi­cult eco­nomic sit­u­a­tion in a gen­er­a­tion, every dol­lar mat­ters,” Kind said. “We must look out for exces­sive spend­ing, and we must con­tinue work­ing to ensure greater trans­parency and increased fis­cal respon­si­bil­ity in the ear­mark process.”

Dave Obey (D-Wausau) is reported as seek­ing $213.3 mil­lion for 85 projects in his dis­trict.  Herb Kohl is seek­ing $345.3 mil­lion for an undis­closed num­ber of projects.  Russ Fein­gold is con­tin­u­ing is record of never ask­ing for earmarks.

Kagen is not quoted in the arti­cle defend­ing any of his pork projects, amaz­ing since he usu­ally can’t wait to get in front of a micro­phone held by a Post-Crescent reporter.

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Cartoon of the Day

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The Best Laid Plans of Mice and Men Often Go Awry

So much for the Democ­rats avoid­ing a pri­mary in the 7th Con­gres­sional Dis­trict. Not that Dave Obey, Mike Tate, and oth­ers didn’t try.

One almost have to love the act­ing job Rep. Louis Molepske Jr. (D-Stevens Point) did in his role of “Lone Elected Offi­cial Hold­ing Out and Think­ing About Chal­leng­ing the Estab­lish­ment.”   Stel­lar work sir.

Emmy wor­thy actually.

An author and inter­net con­sul­tant from Iron River, Wis­con­sin wants to grab retir­ing Wis­con­sin Con­gress­men Dave Obey’s seat.

Joe Reas­beck is expected to make the offi­cial announce­ment tomor­row morn­ing at the Richard Bong Museum in Superior.

Reas­beck, who will be a Demo­c­ra­tic con­tender, says he seeds a need for lead­er­ship to cre­ate sus­tain­able jobs that help diver­sify the econ­omy. He says it’s impor­tant because local eco­nom­ics today are com­pet­ing with the world.

Reas­beck most recently served as an advi­sor on the Google Twin Ports Movie.

Wis­con­sin State Sen­a­tor Julie Lassa is also cam­paign­ing for the 7th dis­trict office on the Demo­c­ra­tic ticket.

Ash­land Dis­trict Attor­ney Sean Duffy and Dan Mielke are the Repub­li­can con­tenders for the seat.

A quick Google search on Reas­beck finds that his is the author of “Near­fall,” the story about two broth­ers on their high school wrestling team.  It hit paper­back in 2007.   Another link shows their was talk about mak­ing it into a movie in 2009.

So if all of the above is true, he’s going to have money pos­si­bly attached to him.  Which likely means Lassa won’t have a “gnat,” but an actual chal­lenger here depend­ing on how series of a run Mr. Reas­beck puts it.

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Cartoon of the Day

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Baldwin, Partner Split

Per­son­ally, I only see two…alright three ques­tions on the Baldwin-Azar split.

1) Why is this news?  I mean seri­ously, it’s a “divorce,” rather com­mon place today.

2) Will the long-rumored “truth” behind Azar’s appoint­ment to the PSC (She’s there because of Tammy, not because of any­thing else) finally be admitted?

3) Will we get a press release when the invalid Cana­dian mar­riage of Mark Pocan ends some­day too?

U.S. Rep. Tammy Bald­win and her part­ner of nearly 15 years are separating.

Bald­win, a Madi­son Demo­c­rat and first open les­bian elected to Con­gress, issued a state­ment through her office Fri­day say­ing she and Lau­ren Azar are ter­mi­nat­ing their domes­tic partnership.

They were among the first to sign up for Wisconsin’s domes­tic part­ner­ship reg­istry for same-sex cou­ples last year.

Azar is a mem­ber of the Wis­con­sin Pub­lic Ser­vice Com­mis­sion, which reg­u­lates util­i­ties. She was appointed by Gov. Jim Doyle in 2007.

The state­ment said Bald­win and Azar would have no more com­ment about the pri­vate matter.

I’m overall…indifferent on Gay Mar­riage since 2006.  Oh, I still believe I voted the right way on the Mar­riage Amend­ment, since I wouldn’t trust State Supreme Court Chief Jus­tice Shirley Abramham­son on decid­ing the issue on the mer­its of the law or the Wis­con­sin Con­sti­tu­tion — which by the way actu­ally states mar­riage as between “a hus­band and a wife.”  (I’m still wait­ing for the state left to attack Doyle for his clas­sic “Only an idiot doesn’t know what that means” press release.)

As a Catholic, I firmly believe the word “Mar­riage” means some­thing.  So, while I’m okay with any form of same-sex domes­tic part­ner­ship, could the homo­sex­ual com­mu­nity please not sully the word “Mar­riage” even more?

Lord knows the het­eros and divorce attor­neys (Face it, the real win­ners in any suc­cess­ful state with a “Gay Mar­riage” law are the divorce attor­neys.) have done enough dam­age already to the institution.

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Why I Quit Reading The Atlantic

Once upon a time, The Atlantic used to be a great mag­a­zine which was tra­di­tion­ally devoid of any real bias, but would give both sides of the polit­i­cal debate an even share.  They had con­ser­v­a­tives, they had lib­er­als, but they never played favorites and never had a bias for or against any­one in politics.

That pretty much changed when their Editor-in-Chief Michael Kelly died while cov­er­ing the Iraq War.  Since then, the magazine’s steep decline and slide has been hard to ignore.  It’s turned into a mag­a­zine where its writ­ers act like divas (Andrew Sul­li­van any­one?) and its reporters (Marc Ambinder) act more like spin doc­tors for those inside the Obama White House.

Now take this post from the Atlantic’s blog by Daniel Indi­viglio, I’m tak­ing it as posted by James Joyner at his blog “Out­side the Beltway.”

At 3:08 yes­ter­day after­noon, The Atlantic‘s Daniel Indi­viglio posted a piece titled “Ken­neth Starr Charged With Run­ning $30 Mil­lion Ponzi Scheme” and with the lede,

Some­where, Bill Clin­ton is smil­ing. One-time spe­cial pros­e­cu­tor who uncov­ered the dirty details of the for­mer President’s affair with intern Mon­ica Lewin­sky has been engaged in some bad behav­ior of his own, accord­ing to the Jus­tice Depart­ment and Secu­ri­ties and Exchange Com­mis­sion.

At ~3:18, he posted a correction:

Appar­ently there are two famous Ken­neth Starrs. The one charged is an invest­ment advi­sor to the stars, but not the for­mer spe­cial pros­e­cu­tor. Apolo­gies to Bill Clin­ton if we got his hopes up — and to the other Ken­neth Starr.

I’m not sure whether this means blog­gers should wait 10 min­utes longer before post­ing wild sto­ries, Ken­neth Starr (not the one charged with mas­sive crimes, but the other one) has a hell of a rep­u­ta­tion man­age­ment sys­tem, or what.

10 min­utes from post­ing to cor­rec­tion.  Good to see the research stan­dards at The Atlantic are up to snuff.

It’s a pity one can’t say the same about the edi­to­r­ial staff.

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Cartoon of the Day

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Video of the Day

(H/T Greg Mankiw)

After some dig­ging, the best I can come up with is that this was part of a UK show where, for the sake of both edu­ca­tion and com­edy, they did this segment.

It’s price­less and a great way to see the world econ­omy as it now stand in action given the state of the Euro, sov­er­eign debt, and so on.

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