Saturday, June 22, 2013

Jeffrey Skilling: First in Line for Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner



Federal Correctional Institution -- Englewood  

Prison Sentence of Ex-Enron C.E.O. Skilling Cut by 10 Years. (The New York Times, 6/21/2013)\\

Excerpt: Mr. Skilling, 59, who has been serving his sentence at a federal prison in Colorado, appeared in court on Friday wearing an olive-drab prison uniform and a salt-and-pepper beard, and looking bulkier than he did during his days as a corporate chieftain.


Some might say, "At least they'll be at least one use for physical books in the future"

But that wouldn't be me.

 \\

Barnsley Libraries.

Responsible Fishing UK

Not Sure If I Want to Map Paula Deen's Route from Butter to Mattresses



Food Network Drops Paula Deen.  (The New York Times, 6/21/2013)

Excerpt:   Those shows were part of a small culinary business empire run by Ms. Deen, 66, who has produced numerous cookbooks, lent her name to household products from butter to mattresses, and served as a spokeswoman for Philadelphia Cream Cheese and Smithfield Foods.


Scott Walker vs. The Wisconsin Budget Project: Who Are You Going to Believe?


An Overview of Health Care Issues in the 2013-15.  Spending More State Dollars to Cover Fewer Wisconsinites through BadgerCare.  (Wisconsin Budget Project, 6/20/2013)


Scott Walker:  That's my story and I'm stickin' to it.  (Repeat after me.)

....while protecting our taxpayers from unnecessary risk and the fiscal uncertainty coming out of Washington, D.C.

The cost of rejecting Medicaid funds for Wisconsin.  (Isthmus, 6/13/2013)

State committee votes to reject Medicaid expansion.  (Appleton Post-Crescent, 6/4/2013)

Other 2013-15 budget posts:
And not to be left out, a little trinket for construction industry donors.  (6/18/2013)
I Suppose the Realtors Should Get Something for Their $1,381,713.96.  (6/18/2013)
Whose Fingerprints are on Item #20 of the Draft Assembly Republican Budget Amendment?  (6/19/2013)
Last call to stuff policy items into the budget.  (6/18/2013)
This passes for editorial insight at the Racine Journal-Times.  (6/18/2013)
Two things we know about Stephen Nass: Voting "no" on budget, trusting in God.  (6/17/2013)
Scott Walker on tax cut rates: "Mostly False", "False," or "Pants on Fire": You make the call.  (6/12/2013)
State Senator Dale Schultz (R-Richland Center) Tells Joy Cardin What's On His Mind: "I think things have gotten too extreme and out of hand.".  (6/7/2013)
What'd I Say?  (6/6/2013)
Why Item #36 in the Omnibus Education Motion #538 Could Be Called the Hudson Option. (6/6/2013)
Republicans' 2013-15 State Budget PolicyFest, Part 2: Allowing Private Bail Bonds.  (6/6/2013)
Republicans' 2013-15 State Budget PolicyFest, Part 1: Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism.  (6/6/2013)
The Most Fortunate of Wisconsin's Residents: Heading in the Right Direction and Leaving the Rest of Us Behind.  (6/5/2013)
$490,000,000: The Partial Cost of Republican Ideology to Wisconsin Taxpayers.  (6/5/2013)
2013-15 Budget Bill / Library Funding Update.  (5/30/2013)
Wisconsin's Joint Finance Committee in Micromanaging Mode.  (5/30/2013)
Selling State Properties? It's in the ALEC Playbook.  (5/22/2013)
Scott Walker: "We take our responsibility of good stewardship very seriously".  (5/16/2013)
Scott Walker: Disingenuous, or Can't Tell Time (or Count).  (5/10/2013)
13 Assembly Republicans Endorse More Funding for K-12 Education (and None of Them Lives Close to Robin Vos).  (5/9/2013)
Whatever Robin Wants, Robin Gets.  (5/1/2013)
What's John Nygren Drinking Through that Green-and-Gold Straw?  (4/29/2013)
If Wishes Were Horses: When are the Democrats planning on coming out with their own alternative state budget for people to consider?  (4/27/2013)
Good Advice from the La Crosse Tribune Editorial Board.  (4/26/2013)
The 4th and Final Joint Finance Committee Public Hearing on 2013-15 Budget, at Baldwin.  (4/19/2013)


Friday, June 21, 2013

Just What You Might Expect He Would Say

Ball State report gives Wisconsin 'A' for manufacturing. (The Business Journal, 6/20/2013)


Although......

Ball State study foils GOP claim‘Right to work’ as job creator not based in reality: economist.  (Kokomo Tribune, 1/16/2012)

Michael J. Hicks

Maybe that "A" isn't such a big deal after all.

Manufacturing index wanes.  (Eau Claire Leader-Telegram, 6/4/2013)

Excerpt:   The Institute for Supply Management said Monday its index of manufacturing activity fell to 49 last month from 50.7 in April. That's the lowest level in nearly four years and the first time the index has dipped below 50 since November. A reading under 50 indicates contraction.

The drop below 50 in the ISM's index does not mean the overall economy is shrinking. Manufacturing represents just a small fraction of U.S. output.

Manufacturing’s Declining Share of GDP is a Global Phenomenon, and It’s Something to Celebrate.  (U. S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, 3/22/2012)

Excerpt:   Manufacturing’s declining share of output isn’t a sign of economic weakness—it’s just the opposite. It’s a sign that advances in manufacturing productivity and efficiency are translating into lower prices for consumers when they purchase things like cars, food, clothing, appliances, furniture, and electronic goods.

Efficiency.  As in companies paying their workers less and eliminating those pesky "high worker benefit costs" as Michael Hicks refers to them.

One more thing.

GRAPHIC: How The U.S. Chamber Of Commerce Uses Its “Spooky PAC” To Funnel Corporate Cash Into Secret Attack Ads.

The Isley Brothers in the Grade School Curriculum

Rep. Phil Gingrey: Children Should Take Classes on Gender Roles.  (Crooks and Liars, 6/20/2013)


Oh, I'm out here trying to make it, baby can't you see
It takes a lot of money to make, it let's talk truthfully
So keep your love light burning
And a little food hot in my plate
You might as well get used to me coming home a little late.
Isley Brothers.  "Work to Do" lyrics.  Copyright BMI Music Publshing

As much as I love this song, I've always found the lyrics cringe-worthy.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

I Thought Scott Walker is Governor of Wisconsin




Our multi-million dollar man.  (Recall 2012.)




50 Years Ago, the NBA Season Ended in Late April




6 of 9 teams made the playoffs.

The Boston Celtics, making their 7th straight appearance in the finals, won it all against the Los Angeles Lakers on April 24, 1963.  Only game 6 was broadcast on TV -- on something called Sports Network Incorporated (SNI).

50 years later, the NBA has expanded to 30 teams.

And the playoffs now stretch into late June as a result.

Enjoy tonight's game.

Marklein Doesn't Distance Himself from Schultz in Budget Vote


Any why is this of any interest?


Excerpt:  Sen. Dale Schultz, who has fallen out of favor with many fellow Republicans in recent years over several key votes and what they call his left-leaning stances, will face a primary challenge in 2014.

Meanwhile, Marklein hasn't exactly smoked his opponents in his first two Assembly races.

Source:  Ballotpedia

52.1% of the vote in a big Tea Party year


The Heartland Institute Proudly Wears Its Badge of Climate Skepticism

Or scepticism, as it's spelled across the pond.


But here's the entire quote from "Toxic Shock:  A climate change sceptic is melting".from the above-cited article in The Economist.


Oh, and guess where Scott Walker was "scheduled to appear" yesterday evening.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Washington Times Gloats Over Obama Approval Rating Drop, Only to be Overruled by Pew Research 2 Days Later




And Not to be Left Out, a Little Trinket for Construction Industry Donors



Other 2013-15 budget posts:
I Suppose the Realtors Should Get Something for Their $1,381,713.96.  (6/18/2013)
Whose Fingerprints are on Item #20 of the Draft Assembly Republican Budget Amendment?  (6/19/2013)
Last call to stuff policy items into the budget.  (6/18/2013)
This passes for editorial insight at the Racine Journal-Times.  (6/18/2013)
Two things we know about Stephen Nass: Voting "no" on budget, trusting in God.  (6/17/2013)
Scott Walker on tax cut rates: "Mostly False", "False," or "Pants on Fire": You make the call.  (6/12/2013)
State Senator Dale Schultz (R-Richland Center) Tells Joy Cardin What's On His Mind: "I think things have gotten too extreme and out of hand.".  (6/7/2013)
What'd I Say?  (6/6/2013)
Why Item #36 in the Omnibus Education Motion #538 Could Be Called the Hudson Option. (6/6/2013)
Republicans' 2013-15 State Budget PolicyFest, Part 2: Allowing Private Bail Bonds.  (6/6/2013)
Republicans' 2013-15 State Budget PolicyFest, Part 1: Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism.  (6/6/2013)
The Most Fortunate of Wisconsin's Residents: Heading in the Right Direction and Leaving the Rest of Us Behind.  (6/5/2013)
$490,000,000: The Partial Cost of Republican Ideology to Wisconsin Taxpayers.  (6/5/2013)
2013-15 Budget Bill / Library Funding Update.  (5/30/2013)
Wisconsin's Joint Finance Committee in Micromanaging Mode.  (5/30/2013)
Selling State Properties? It's in the ALEC Playbook.  (5/22/2013)
Scott Walker: "We take our responsibility of good stewardship very seriously".  (5/16/2013)
Scott Walker: Disingenuous, or Can't Tell Time (or Count).  (5/10/2013)
13 Assembly Republicans Endorse More Funding for K-12 Education (and None of Them Lives Close to Robin Vos).  (5/9/2013)
Whatever Robin Wants, Robin Gets.  (5/1/2013)
What's John Nygren Drinking Through that Green-and-Gold Straw?  (4/29/2013)
If Wishes Were Horses: When are the Democrats planning on coming out with their own alternative state budget for people to consider?  (4/27/2013)
Good Advice from the La Crosse Tribune Editorial Board.  (4/26/2013)
The 4th and Final Joint Finance Committee Public Hearing on 2013-15 Budget, at Baldwin.  (4/19/2013)

I Suppose the Realtors Should Get Something for Their $1,381,713.96





(Red and blue highlights added)

Other 2013-15 budget posts:
Whose Fingerprints are on Item #20 of the Draft Assembly Republican Budget Amendment?  (6/19/2013)
Last call to stuff policy items into the budget.  (6/18/2013)
This passes for editorial insight at the Racine Journal-Times.  (6/18/2013)
Two things we know about Stephen Nass: Voting "no" on budget, trusting in God.  (6/17/2013)
Scott Walker on tax cut rates: "Mostly False", "False," or "Pants on Fire": You make the call.  (6/12/2013)
State Senator Dale Schultz (R-Richland Center) Tells Joy Cardin What's On His Mind: "I think things have gotten too extreme and out of hand.".  (6/7/2013)
What'd I Say?  (6/6/2013)
Why Item #36 in the Omnibus Education Motion #538 Could Be Called the Hudson Option. (6/6/2013)
Republicans' 2013-15 State Budget PolicyFest, Part 2: Allowing Private Bail Bonds.  (6/6/2013)
Republicans' 2013-15 State Budget PolicyFest, Part 1: Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism.  (6/6/2013)
The Most Fortunate of Wisconsin's Residents: Heading in the Right Direction and Leaving the Rest of Us Behind.  (6/5/2013)
$490,000,000: The Partial Cost of Republican Ideology to Wisconsin Taxpayers.  (6/5/2013)
2013-15 Budget Bill / Library Funding Update.  (5/30/2013)
Wisconsin's Joint Finance Committee in Micromanaging Mode.  (5/30/2013)
Selling State Properties? It's in the ALEC Playbook.  (5/22/2013)
Scott Walker: "We take our responsibility of good stewardship very seriously".  (5/16/2013)
Scott Walker: Disingenuous, or Can't Tell Time (or Count).  (5/10/2013)
13 Assembly Republicans Endorse More Funding for K-12 Education (and None of Them Lives Close to Robin Vos).  (5/9/2013)
Whatever Robin Wants, Robin Gets.  (5/1/2013)
What's John Nygren Drinking Through that Green-and-Gold Straw?  (4/29/2013)
If Wishes Were Horses: When are the Democrats planning on coming out with their own alternative state budget for people to consider?  (4/27/2013)
Good Advice from the La Crosse Tribune Editorial Board.  (4/26/2013)
The 4th and Final Joint Finance Committee Public Hearing on 2013-15 Budget, at Baldwin.  (4/19/2013)

Whose Fingerprints are on Item #20 of the Draft Assembly Republican Budget Amendment?



Clearly, a policy, not a budget, item.  



As I browsed through the LFB draft, this item brought me to an abrupt halt.   Why did it pop up all of a sudden so late in the budget process?   Looking for an answer, I searched the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign Follow the Money database.

Chiropractic health professionals who made contributions to Mary Czaja (R-Irma), (misspronouncer) an insurance agency owner, are highlighted in orange.




To be clear, I'm not saying that the fingerprints are indeed Czaja's, but the information found in the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign's database would seem to allow me to build a case for this argument.

Other 2013-15 budget posts:
Last call to stuff policy items into the budget.  (6/18/2013)
This passes for editorial insight at the Racine Journal-Times.  (6/18/2013)
Two things we know about Stephen Nass: Voting "no" on budget, trusting in God.  (6/17/2013)
Scott Walker on tax cut rates: "Mostly False", "False," or "Pants on Fire": You make the call.  (6/12/2013)
State Senator Dale Schultz (R-Richland Center) Tells Joy Cardin What's On His Mind: "I think things have gotten too extreme and out of hand.".  (6/7/2013)
What'd I Say?  (6/6/2013)
Why Item #36 in the Omnibus Education Motion #538 Could Be Called the Hudson Option. (6/6/2013)
Republicans' 2013-15 State Budget PolicyFest, Part 2: Allowing Private Bail Bonds.  (6/6/2013)
Republicans' 2013-15 State Budget PolicyFest, Part 1: Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism.  (6/6/2013)
The Most Fortunate of Wisconsin's Residents: Heading in the Right Direction and Leaving the Rest of Us Behind.  (6/5/2013)
$490,000,000: The Partial Cost of Republican Ideology to Wisconsin Taxpayers.  (6/5/2013)
2013-15 Budget Bill / Library Funding Update.  (5/30/2013)
Wisconsin's Joint Finance Committee in Micromanaging Mode.  (5/30/2013)
Selling State Properties? It's in the ALEC Playbook.  (5/22/2013)
Scott Walker: "We take our responsibility of good stewardship very seriously".  (5/16/2013)
Scott Walker: Disingenuous, or Can't Tell Time (or Count).  (5/10/2013)
13 Assembly Republicans Endorse More Funding for K-12 Education (and None of Them Lives Close to Robin Vos).  (5/9/2013)
Whatever Robin Wants, Robin Gets.  (5/1/2013)
What's John Nygren Drinking Through that Green-and-Gold Straw?  (4/29/2013)
If Wishes Were Horses: When are the Democrats planning on coming out with their own alternative state budget for people to consider?  (4/27/2013)
Good Advice from the La Crosse Tribune Editorial Board.  (4/26/2013)
The 4th and Final Joint Finance Committee Public Hearing on 2013-15 Budget, at Baldwin.  (4/19/2013)


Tuesday, June 18, 2013

NRA/ALEC "Docs and Glocks" Law Finally Makes Its Way to Wisconsin


Health groups oppose bill to ban doctors from asking patients about guns. (Wisconsin State Journal, 6/18/2013)

Doctors Caught in Crossfire of Nutty Obama Conspiracy TheoryFrom South Carolina to Montana, legislators are pushing controversial "docs vs. Glocks" laws.  (Mother Jones, 3/20.2013)

After Newtown, Will NRA Still Demand a Ban on Docs Asking Kids about Guns?  (Mother Jones,12/20/2012)

Florida Law Bans Doctors From Asking About Guns. (ABC News, 6/3/2011)

Doctors, groups clash over asking patients about firearms. (USA Today, 5/13/2011)

If Ever There Was a Time Not to Take Polls Seriously


Add caption




Pain-Capable Posturing in the U.S. House of Representatives


House Votes to Ban Abortions After 20 Weeks of Pregnancy.  (Bloomberg News, 6/18/2013)

Excerpt: Jean Schroedel, a politics professor at Claremont Graduate University in Claremont, California, said House Republicans are seeking to “placate” their base on abortion, even as they recognize the measure won’t become law.

The base, as in  lacking or indicating the lack of higher qualities of mind or spirit : ignoble

Wondering About the "Weeding" "Misstep" at the Urbana Free Library

Urbana Free Library

Urbana library 'misstep' upsets patrons. (The News-Gazette, 6/18/2013)

Excerpt: The planned "weeding" was part of the library's effort to prepare for the installation of new security gates and conversion to a radio-frequency identification system, which will allow for several self-checkout stations to be installed later this year. It also was part of an effort to carve out additional space for people in the library, library board President Mary Ellen Farrell said last week. 

Time out: Starting out at the library's homepage, I had trouble locating a list of the names and contact information of library board members,  No luck clicking on "Find Us" and "Contact Us" at the top of the page.

What's this "Your Right to Know?" I asked myself after scrolling to the bottom of the page.

[Click]

Well, whaddya know!


Not exactly intuitive.

Now back to the article.

But audience members at Monday night's city council meeting called it a mistake, and some even called for the resignation of library Director Debra Lissak.

Time out.  I wonder how often Debra attends council meetings.  As uncomfortable as it would have been for her, she should have been at this one, prepared, accompanied by library board president Mary Ellen Farwell.

Lissak could not be reached for comment on Monday night, but she said last week that it was never intended for so many books to be removed. Some of those books are being returned to library shelves, and Lissak said the "misstep" was the result of a miscommunication.

What's still missing, though, is the appearance of anyone taking responsibility.

And then there's this disturbing sidebar:

Kate McDowell, a former Urbana Library Board member and faculty member at the University of Illinois Graduate School of Library and Information Sciences, said the event has "damaged public trust" of library officials. 

She said she was troubled by the audio she heard of the last library board meeting and asked that the city begin televising those meetings "in order to encourage greater oversight."

Not exactly a ringing endorsement.

I assume that Kate's reference to "the last library meeting" is the one that took place on June 11th, for which minutes have not yet been posted.

Looking at the May minutes, I thought the Recording Secretary could have done a better job of summarizing the strategic planning discussion, particularly as it related to public meeting space and collection space.




I'll bet the people who signed this petition would love to know what was said at this meeting, specifically about "collection space in consideration of the first two priorities in the strategic plan".  (The strategic planning process itself looks to be worthy of a follow-up post.)

It also looks as though I have a new real-life case study for the spring 2014 semester of LIS 712 The Public Library.

We're out of maple syrup, Honey! Road trip!!

From Russell, Pennsylvania, to Bennington, Vermont. 397 miles.

Source:  Rand McNally


But not as much as his maple syrup, apparently.

Republicans Resort to Window-Dressing with Abortion Bill

First of all, we have another example of a mind-on-vacation-mouth-working-overtime Republican saying dumb things.

Mr. Base Man

G.O.P. Pushes New Abortion Limits to Appease Vocal Base. (The New York Times, 6/17/2013)

The bill  is sponsored by Rep. Trent Franks (R-Arizona) and originally included no exceptions for victims of rape or incest.  (Since revised.  Quietly.)   It's likely to pass the House of Representatives but has no chance in the U.S. Senate.

Ordinarily, the sponsor manages debate when his or her bill reaches the floor of the House.

Not in this case.

Meet Marsha Blackburn.

Photo credits:  U.S. House of Representatives




Not that Blackburn doesn't take a few vacations of her own.  Look for her to fill the vacuum left by Bachmann's departure.

Tony Evers Speaks Out on Proposed Education Budget

Evers calls for education budget changes. (Wisconsin Radio Network, 6/17/2013)


The ideology, of course, is supplied by ALEC.

Few Wisconsin Republican legislators have the ability to do this anymore.



It's as if they've walked off the set of Invasion of the Body Snatchers.

Other school choice posts:
Imagine Alberta Darling \telling her Republican constituents, "You're my tools!"  (6!62013)
FoxNews 11 can't bring itself to say "tea party".  (6/13/2013)
ALEC's to death.  (6/7/2013)
Bought and paid for.  (5/3/2013)
Education vs. indoctrination.  (5/2/2013)
School choice field trip?  (4/26/2013)
Spending by school choice backers: Sort of like Christmas for some folks.  (4/15/2013)
Study analysis likely to be pooh-poohed by majority of the Wisconsin State Legislature, who prefer ideology over evidence.  (4/4/2013)
The New York Times provides an overview of school choice without mentioning the American Legislative Exchange Council's orchestration.  (3/26/2013)
Conjuring up a metaphorical firestorm.  (2/25/2013)
Wisconsin's school voucher program provides $6,400 in public money per private school student.  (12/2/2012)
Reporter Writes About "Flood" of School Voucher Legislation without Mentioning ALEC.  (8/2/2011)

Last Call to Stuff Policy Items into the Wisconsin State Budget

GOP leaders rush to prep Wisconsin budget plan for final vote. (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 6/17/2013)

Excerpt: In an unexpected twist, some Republican lawmakers are also trying to insert language into the budget to keep protesters out of the northern Wisconsin site where exploratory drilling is going on for a possible massive open pit mine.


 Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources


Other 2013-15 budget posts:
This passes for editorial insight at the Racine Journal-Times.  (6/18/2013)
Two things we know about Stephen Nass: Voting "no" on budget, trusting in God.  (6/17/2013)
Scott Walker on tax cut rates: "Mostly False", "False," or "Pants on Fire": You make the call.  (6/12/2013)
State Senator Dale Schultz (R-Richland Center) Tells Joy Cardin What's On His Mind: "I think things have gotten too extreme and out of hand.".  (6/7/2013)
What'd I Say?  (6/6/2013)
Why Item #36 in the Omnibus Education Motion #538 Could Be Called the Hudson Option. (6/6/2013)
Republicans' 2013-15 State Budget PolicyFest, Part 2: Allowing Private Bail Bonds.  (6/6/2013)
Republicans' 2013-15 State Budget PolicyFest, Part 1: Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism.  (6/6/2013)
The Most Fortunate of Wisconsin's Residents: Heading in the Right Direction and Leaving the Rest of Us Behind.  (6/5/2013)
$490,000,000: The Partial Cost of Republican Ideology to Wisconsin Taxpayers.  (6/5/2013)
2013-15 Budget Bill / Library Funding Update.  (5/30/2013)
Wisconsin's Joint Finance Committee in Micromanaging Mode.  (5/30/2013)
Selling State Properties? It's in the ALEC Playbook.  (5/22/2013)
Scott Walker: "We take our responsibility of good stewardship very seriously".  (5/16/2013)
Scott Walker: Disingenuous, or Can't Tell Time (or Count).  (5/10/2013)
13 Assembly Republicans Endorse More Funding for K-12 Education (and None of Them Lives Close to Robin Vos).  (5/9/2013)
Whatever Robin Wants, Robin Gets.  (5/1/2013)
What's John Nygren Drinking Through that Green-and-Gold Straw?  (4/29/2013)
If Wishes Were Horses: When are the Democrats planning on coming out with their own alternative state budget for people to consider?  (4/27/2013)
Good Advice from the La Crosse Tribune Editorial Board.  (4/26/2013)
The 4th and Final Joint Finance Committee Public Hearing on 2013-15 Budget, at Baldwin.  (4/19/2013)

This Passes for Editorial Insight at the Racine Journal-Times

Journal Times editorial: Hard-liners shouldn’t vote against budget. (Racine Journal-Times, 6/18/2013)\




Let me offer a different perspective.

They did things to offend just about everybody.

Other 2013-15 budget posts:
Two things we know about Stephen Nass: Voting "no" on budget, trusting in God.  (6/17/2013)
Scott Walker on tax cut rates: "Mostly False", "False," or "Pants on Fire": You make the call.  (6/12/2013)
State Senator Dale Schultz (R-Richland Center) Tells Joy Cardin What's On His Mind: "I think things have gotten too extreme and out of hand.".  (6/7/2013)
What'd I Say?  (6/6/2013)
Why Item #36 in the Omnibus Education Motion #538 Could Be Called the Hudson Option. (6/6/2013)
Republicans' 2013-15 State Budget PolicyFest, Part 2: Allowing Private Bail Bonds.  (6/6/2013)
Republicans' 2013-15 State Budget PolicyFest, Part 1: Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism.  (6/6/2013)
The Most Fortunate of Wisconsin's Residents: Heading in the Right Direction and Leaving the Rest of Us Behind.  (6/5/2013)
$490,000,000: The Partial Cost of Republican Ideology to Wisconsin Taxpayers.  (6/5/2013)
2013-15 Budget Bill / Library Funding Update.  (5/30/2013)
Wisconsin's Joint Finance Committee in Micromanaging Mode.  (5/30/2013)
Selling State Properties? It's in the ALEC Playbook.  (5/22/2013)
Scott Walker: "We take our responsibility of good stewardship very seriously".  (5/16/2013)
Scott Walker: Disingenuous, or Can't Tell Time (or Count).  (5/10/2013)
13 Assembly Republicans Endorse More Funding for K-12 Education (and None of Them Lives Close to Robin Vos).  (5/9/2013)
Whatever Robin Wants, Robin Gets.  (5/1/2013)
What's John Nygren Drinking Through that Green-and-Gold Straw?  (4/29/2013)
If Wishes Were Horses: When are the Democrats planning on coming out with their own alternative state budget for people to consider?  (4/27/2013)
Good Advice from the La Crosse Tribune Editorial Board.  (4/26/2013)
The 4th and Final Joint Finance Committee Public Hearing on 2013-15 Budget, at Baldwin.  (4/19/2013)

Monday, June 17, 2013

K-I-S-S-I-N-G: Beth Has a Crush on Scott



Is Scott Walker the GOP's Sleeper Presidential Candidate? (National Journal, 6/17/2013)

Excerpt: But he's a conservative Republican who won election in a blue state, survived a brutal recall campaign, and now posts approval ratings over 50 percent. A budget-slashing chief executive and son of a Baptist minister who straddles the fiscal and social conservative camps. A proven fundraiser who has put his thumb in the eye of President Obama and Big Labor.

[Swoon]

But wait a minute!

Conservative-leaning poll gives Scott Walker a 43.5% approval rating.  (The Apollo Report, 5/13/2013)

Excerpt: There appears to be two main reasons for Walker's recent decline in the polls: Wisconsin's poor economic performance and the growing scandal surrounding the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation.

Two Things We Know About Stephen Nass: Voting "No" on Budget, Trusting in God

Queens Library Children's Library Discovery Center

From the Queens Library website:   The Children's Library Discovery Center which is now open includes hands-on interactive exhibits and learning labs to enable children ages 3-12 to find information and to inspire interest in books, reading, and learning while discovering the joy of scientific exploration.



Related post:
Children's Library Discovery Center.  (10/18/2011)

Marissa Powell: In Her Own Words

Source:  Miss USA Pageant





Marissa Powell's biography (from Miss USA website; I assume the candidates were asked to dress like Daisy Buchanan.)

Marissa Powell is a singer who has performed with her group ‘Geniveve’ (must be someone else / might be her)  in numerous venues across the state of Utah, singing the National Anthem for over 10,000 people at the Rocky Mountain Cup for Real Salt Lake, as well as writing and performing original songs for the past six years. 

As a model and an actress she has been involved in runway, print and film; featured in Fitness Magazine, television commercials and recently appearing on ABC’s What Would you Do? TV episode as a lead actress. 

She played volleyball throughout High school and was awarded All-Region two years in a row and Deseret News First Team All-State 5A Defensive Specialist of the Year 2009. She played volleyball for Westminster College in 2010. 

Marissa’s community involvement includes volunteering for Primary Children’s Hospital for the last five years as a member of the Kids Crew in the Forever Young Zone. She plans on helping to promote programs at Primary Children’s Hospital this year during her reign as Miss Utah USA and serve as an ambassador for Healing Hands for Haiti International Foundation.  (At least it's not on a list of "America's 50 worst charities".)

Outside of a mention of "High school" and Westminster College, nothing about her educational background.

Waiting for the Rest of the Story in Gwinnett County Georgia

Gwinnett County library director fired. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution, 6/12/2013)

Nancy Stanbery-Kellam, the library's Executive Director since Sept. 8, 2008, was fired "without cause" (terminated for reasons not related to misconduct?)  on a 3-1 vote by the library board.

Gwinnett County Public Library 
Click on the link and this is what you get.


Not acceptable.

So what, if anything, is behind this personnel issue.

First of all, there's "An Open Letter to Ms. Nancy Stanbery-Kellam(9/23/2009), wherein Jimmy Wilbanks questions Stanbery-Kellam's professionalism.

I was again disappointed at the lack of professionalism I saw at the September 22, 2009 Library Board of Trustee meeting. Once again under your leadership, the board chose the easy way out. Yes you suggested a compromise--making a computer lab out of a thriving library branch at Dacula.

At the same time, a group called Save Gwinnett's Community Libraries, called for5 Stanbery-Kellam's ouster.

We call for a vote of No Confidence in Nancy Stanbery-Kellam, the Executive Director of Gwinnett Public Library, and we call for her removal as Executive Director for her reckless actions: 

1) In her desire to close Dacula's Library. 

2) For changing the Gwinnett library system from community to a regional based system without community input. 

3) For her disregard for the opinions of the citizens of Gwinnett County.

The group's pleas fell on mostly deaf ears.  Only 192 people signed the petition, well short of the goal of 5,000.

In Stanbery-Kellam's defense, Gwinnett County was especially hard-hit when the housing bubble burst in 2007.  Since then, the county, along with the rest of the Atlanta metro area and much of the United States, has experienced the double whammy of falling property values and shrinking property tax revenues.

Gwinnett, GA Faces Million Dollar Budget Cut. (Library Journal, 1/17/2013)

It ain't over yet. On January 3, the Gwinnett County, GA, Board of Commissioners adopted a $1.46 billion budget for 2013, 7.1 percent lower than the previous year, citing shrinking property tax revenues. GCPL took a substantial hit; the final budget allocates $2 million for library materials, down from $3 million a year ago.

Ray Peterson Had His Own Little Death Cafe for Awhile



Death Be Not Decaffeinated: Over Cup, Groups Face Taboo. (The New York Times, 6/16/2013)

Excerpt:    The group, which meets monthly, is called a Death Cafe, one of many such gatherings that have sprung up in nearly 40 cities around the country in the last year. Offshoots of the “cafĂ© mortel” movement that emerged in Switzerland and France about 10 years ago, these are not grief support groups or end-of-life planning sessions, but rather casual forums for people who want to bat around philosophical thoughts. 
  • What is death like? 
  • Why do we fear it? 
  • How do our views of death inform the way we live?

Death cafe locations:

Ray Peterson sings about death.




Village of Butler Police Department: Time to Revise the Position Descriptions



Trustees mum about police scandal.   Won't say what they knew about the chief. (Sussex Sun, 6/11/2013) 

Excerpt:  Some village officials actually praised Cosgrove for his 33 years of service, seven as chief, when he announced his retirement in March.  (Although he's still listed on the police chief on the village';s website.)  Those same village officials were aware he faced a litany of misconduct allegations that involved him 
  • viewing pornography on his department computer, 
  • using racially derogatory language to employees, 
  • making inappropriate sexual comments and gestures to male and female colleagues and 
  • making derogatory remarks and gestures to law enforcement officials from other departments.
According to the video report and YouTube summary, the inappropriate behavior was not limited to the police chief.

After five of seven members of the Butler Police Department were implicated in a report outlining poor behavior, the village has decided to replace its retired chief from within.  [Emphasis added]


Rebuilding of Milwaukee's East Library to Get Underway Next Month

Credit:  Engberg Anderson

East Library to close current location for rebuilding. (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 6/16/2013)

Excerpt: When the library closes for the last time in its current form on Saturday, it will have served the east side for 45 years. The one-story, 13,800-square-foot library has long been in need of repairs, said the library's regional branch manager, Rachel Collins. 

Two years ago, that need led the city to consider a slew of reconstruction proposals from real estate developers intent on capitalizing on what Collins called a "prime piece of real estate." One Waukesha-based developer, HSI Properties LLC, ultimately won out with a proposal for a four-story building with 99 apartments situated above a new, 17,000-square-foot library. The multiuse design will see the new library reconstructed at no cost to the city. Interior design for the new space will cost the city roughly $2.75 million. 

The new space, set to open in fall 2014, will boast 
  • two state-of-the-art meeting rooms furnished with translucent glass, 
  • a revamped space for children, 
  • a new laptop vending machine and 
  • a designated teen space, an amenity the current facility lacks. 
The national architectural firm Hammel, Green and Abrahamson will execute those designs once the shell of the library is turned over to the city in early 2014, said Milwaukee Public Library Communications and Marketing Director Brooke VandeBerg.