Sunday, January 25, 2015

Between a Hard Rock and the Pots

So the Governor of Wisconsin announced that he cannot support  the building  of the  Kenosha casino - entertainment complex.

In the  state of Wisconsin this  was a lose/lose decision for Gov. Walker. No matter what he decided the political left was going to attack him. I've seen ardent anti gambling types go after him as someone who is not interested in job creation. These are the same ones who attack the Governor for the type of jobs created, low paying non family  supporting gigs.

Then there are those who wanted the casino and the accompanying jobs no matter what. Unfortunately for Walker many in this category are/where his supporters. These people are mad and from social media comments they are trending as unforgiving. I'm talking Pontius Pilot washing their hands of him angry.

Supporters who claim to have worked hard for the reelection of the Gov. are now saying they will work just as feverishly against his desire to become President. The wild card here is not knowing who they supported before the decision.

The recent announcement by an ultra conservative group in Iowa that they would be hard pressed to support Gov. Walker if he ageed to expand gambling in Wisconsin muddied the waters. What they did was made it look like Walker sold out residents and jobs in Wisconsin for Iowan support in his pursuit of the Republican Presidential nomination.

It was a smooth move by Bob Vander Plaats, the president and chief executive officer of The Family Leader. Whether it had anything to do in the decision making process the impression is hard to ignore.

The blame is rightly placed on the shoulders of former Governor Jim Doyle. His short sighted and campaign influenced negotiations with the Potawatomi has come back to bite Badger state residents in the backside.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

To Pander or Not To Pander - that is the Rainey

In a wise choice, pandering politician Milwaukee County Supervisor Khalif Rainey has chosen to drop his ill advised proposal to rename Red Arrow Park after Dontre Hamiltion.

According to an article in the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, Rainey changed his mind after "After military veterans and their families from all over the state contacted him to voice their opposition to such a change." 

One would have thought that Rainey would have looked into and considered the history of the Park before pandering to a very sad situation.  I guess when you are setting sights on a new office (alderman) there isn't much that will stand in your way - like common sense.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Uncle Tom or Frederick Douglass

The issue of race seems to be on the grow lately, at least from a mainstream and social media point of view.

One of the intriguing aspects of this battle is that of Black Conservatives vs Black Liberals / Progressives. It's just as ugly if not more vitriolic than the generic battle between conservatives and liberals. It seems "bro" only goes so far.

Two terms coming from the political left that seem to be particularly prevalent are "coon" and the wrongly used "Uncle Tom". 

Somehow Harriet Beecher Stowe's Uncle Tom who was an imposing physical person and who refused to beat other slaves and received a fatal beating because he refused tell the whereabouts of a couple of escaped slaves has become a pox. This impressive man's name who impacted the views of whites on slavery via Stowe's book has morphed into a negative term. The definition from the Free Dictionary - A black person who is regarded as being subservient or excessively deferential to white people.

A more precise usage of the term is that it refers to conservatives only. I wonder who is more subservient to the white power structure then black liberals in the Democratic Party. They've voted en masse for Democrats and what has been the result? A 50 year Great Society project that's done nothing to improve their situation.

It seems to me that black conservatives should really be called Frederick Douglass's not Uncle Toms.

Frederick Douglass was born a slave, he escaped that bondage, he boldly fought the Abolitionist fight, influenced 5 Presidents, and eventually became a 1%. If he were alive today he'd be considered an Uncle Tom by liberals/progressives/Democrats who'd judge him based on the escaping the status quo.

Today's black conservatives are far from the perverted use of the term Uncle Tom.

If you listen to their testimonies you'll find most grew up on the low end of the economic scale, they used all the resources available to them to escape that bondage, they share their life stories in order to encourage others to escape their economic conditions, and many have become prosperous and continue in that success in their personal and business lives.

For that they are called are Uncle Toms.

They are Frederick Douglass.



Saturday, January 3, 2015

Selma, LBJ and Truth?

In the next few weeks the movie "Selma" will be released amid some well deserved controversy concerning President Lyndon Baines Johnson.

The current media whitewash is that LBJ was all in for the Civil Rights movement and without him the movement would have stalled.  Well I'm no historian, but I do know how to read and the LBJ's Civil Rights support was nothing more than a political move that was inevitable.

My main issue is with the transformational change of Johnson over 20 years from never voting for a Civil Rights bill to suddenly becoming the Civil Rights President. Here's some evidence of the mind set of LBJ:

 

Malcolm X: LBJ had no "genuine interest" in blacks pre-1964

Malcolm X's "The Ballot or the Bullet" speech, Cory Methodist Church, Cleveland, USA, Friday 3 April 1964. "A ballot is like a bullet. You don't throw your ballots until you see a target and, if that target is not within your reach, keep your ballot in your pocket."

Malcolm X noted that 1964 was an election year, a time: "When all of the white political crooks will be right back in your and my community with their false promises which they don't intend to keep." 

He said that President Johnson and the Democratic Party supposedly supported the civil rights bill but there was very little evidence of genuine interest. He maintained that, even though the Democrats controlled both the House of Representatives and the Senate, politicians hadn't taken genuine action to pass the bill.
Source: The 100 Greatest Speeches, by Kourdi & Maier, p.179-180 , Apr 3, 1964 
 
The pandering of the political left is an amazing thing. The problem for us on the right is that the Dems are very good at claiming the political positive when they often are not the action takers but the action talkers.
 

Monday, December 29, 2014

Who's Got the Dem Power

The November elections have left us with some very interesting questions concerning the power structure of Milwaukee or lack thereof of Milwaukee area Democrats

Sen. Chris Larson has relinquished his crown as the minority leader in the Senate, Rep. Evan Goyke was unsuccessful in his attempt to become the minority leader in the Assembly and there is very little positive buzz going on.

What we are hearing is the call for a full revolution from the ground troupes amid a non responsive leadership in Madison which returned virtually all the leadership to their current positions for the next legislative session. 

The head of Mike Tate, current WisDems chair is also a target. Lefty blogs, which generally speaking are on the far far left of the political spectrum have been merciless on their attacks.  Even if Tate doesn't step down from his $100,000 a year gig he will face strong opposition at the next state convention. It should be a fun show this June.

This leads us back to Wisconsin's largest city. 

Who's running the show here? With the rise of Sen. Larson there was a huge divide between the north side and south side Democrats,  one could even say it was a racial divide.  Sen. Lena Taylor was squeezed out of the loop (and the powerful Joint Finance Committee) by Larson and rumored to have her invites to the minority caucus meetings get lost in the mail. She's also up for reelection in 2016 and will face a primary opponent from the radical progressive wing of the party.  She was reappointed to the Joint Finance Committee by new Senate Minority Leader Jennifer Shilling.

Rep. Leon Young seems to have blown his opportunity to work with Republicans as the co-chair of the State and Federal Relations Committee and will continue to sit on the back bench earn his pension. The other black legislators have little experience and less power. 

JoCasta Zamarripa holds the position of minority caucus Minority Caucus Vice Chairperson and during the election process it was said she does good clock.  Josh Zepnick is the Sargent at Arms for the Dems Caucus. 

County Executive Chris Abele is a wild card in this mess. He"s got a bully pulpit and some major cash. What he doesn't seem to have is enough support from either the right, left or middle to put together a strong coalition to move the balance of power. In fact every candidate he endorses gets slammed by Milwaukee's wild liberal left.

A group to keep an eye on in the power struggle will be the union backed Wisconsin Jobs Now. They are laying plans for a "new" progressive party similar to the Tea Party. They'll work the far left of the Democratic party during the spring 2016 elections for Milwaukee's Common Council and the Milwaukee County Board before purging the party of any perceived moderate Democrats interested in serving in the State Legislature. 

It will be an interesting two year shakeout for the political left in the area and the state. I say let the games begin,  but will it be checkers or chess.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Milwaukee County Continues Screwing the Pooch

The Milwaukee County Board overplayed its hand in dealing with Northwestern Mutual Life and the selling of O'Donnell Park.  By a vote of 9-8 they stood on the assumption that they had the upper hand on one of Milwaukee's finest companies.

During the hearing we had supervisors tell each other how smart they were and how NML should listen to them on how to spend their money.  Hopefully something the Board learned was to have a backup plan, like NML did.

Shortly after the vote NML announced they would move forward by announcing that they would build a mixed use facility including a parking structure on property they already own in the downtown area.

During the hearing there was a slew of pontificating including from Sup. Jursik explaining how she spent an hour talking to NML CEO John Schlifske telling him how her idea for the use of the parking structure and park would be a better choice than his.  We had John Weishan saying that Milwaukee County is good partner to work with and NML should  take them on as a partner in the project with Theo Lipscomb getting up right after Weishan saying that this relationship is buyer-seller one and that the County should get the most money it can, wanting NML to pay more than the $14 million dollar assessment.

The saving grace presented for Milwaukee County and O'Donnell - a coffee shop and beer garden, thanks to Jursic and Jason Haas.  I'm not kidding.

One Supervisor, Deanna Alexander, talked not about her desire but that of her constituents and that she surveyed them and 80% wanted to sell the O'Donnell.  She voted for her district. I don't remember one other Supervisor mentioning a survey of their districts, probably because they were afraid of the answer.

The question that will hang over the board is will any supervisors suffer consequences for this poor decision.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

The Racial Divide - Milwaukee County Style

In a weak attempt to make a statement the black County Supervisors in Milwaukee stood up during the special presentation part of todays meeting made a mini speech about justice or lack thereof,  took off their suitcoats and shirts to bear their black "I Can't Breathe" t-shirts.  To be honest about this only the young bucks, as Supervisor Mayo referred to them as, wore the shirts.  Mayo and Supervisor Willie Johnson Jr displayed the shirts.

Supervisor Khalif Rainey took this opportunity to complain that Gov. Walker has the Wisconsin National Guard on alert in case the protests against the presumed non charging of the police officer in the Dontre Hamilton.

A note to Rainey - the mob doesn't rule.  And if they choose to break the law there are consequences. That is justice.

So where was the racial divide?  From what was evident in viewing the board meeting not one white supervisor was asked to participate even though some were salivating at chance.  It's more than disingenuous for politicians to stand on their soapbox and complain about a racial divide and when given a chance to show solidarity among people turn their back on it.

UPDATE: it was brought to my attention that County Board Chair Marina Dimitrijevic also wore a t-shirt.  She did not make a speech to support the effort other than saying something to effect that she stands with them.  Thanks to Capper from Cognitive Dissidence for the heads up.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Oh No Trolley - Part 1

The Milwaukee Common Council's Public Works Committee was quite the watch tonight.  The issue at hand or seat as it may be was the proposed streetcar / trolley.

Listening to the Mayor's sales group one would have to believe in the land of Oz.  According to the graphics they presented there would be "no taxpayer impact".  Yet city comptroller Martin Matson testified at another hearing on Tuesday that the city would probably be on the hook for $1.8 million dollars a year to cover the costs of the current 2.1 mile route.

Ald. Joe Davis was very adamant in his questioning of the need and the placement of the trolley.  The other Alderman running for Mayor in 2016, Bob Donovan continued to express his desire to have a city wide binding referendum on the issue and talked about the shenanigans that the Mayor is investigating concerning the issuance of Tax Increment Funding.

Davis and Committee Chair Bob Bauman had a pretty interesting go around concerning the trolley.  Davis tried to express how the trolley will not help his constituents and Bauman responded with condescending and testy come backs.

The issue will more than likely be taken up at the next Common Council hearing on December 16th.

I'm against the trolley.  From a fiscal standpoint I see no positive.  To support the proposed $1.8 million deficit the city has proposed to increase parking fees, increase the hours one needs to pay for street parking downtown and take TIF money from the general fund for this small bit of trolley.  What will the costs and added taxes be with the desire to expand the trolley to other areas of the city.