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Finger People - Universal Language - Honduras

Monday, August 15, 2011

SlashDot ... freedom to film atrocity ... illegal?

from Slashdot.com

"A police officer who was disciplined for his role in the beating of a Massachusetts man (many broken bones in his face and permanent partial blindness) is looking to bring criminal wiretapping charges against the woman who caught much of the incident on video. The officer received a 45-day suspension for the beating. He does not appear to deny anything that happened in the video, but he apparently thinks it shouldn't have been filmed."
WI 1848 Forward: #SlashDot ... freedom to film #atrocity ... illegal? : #BillOfRights #47% #99% #Cameras

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Truth-Out.org : The Macroeconomics of London Riots

Why do protests stay peaceful?  Why do riots occur?  Why do protests become violent?  Is it the "action" or the "reaction"?  Were the seeds sown much earlier?  Can anyone determine cause and effect?

You would think so ... but think again!  Truth-Out.org has published a thoughtful piece about the recent London riots.  It makes you wonder about Wisconsin and our Governor Walker and the Tea Party!

In the London case a few quotes are in order ...

by: Ed Targett, New America Media | News Analysis 




London - The riots that surged across England in recent days will have sociologists scratching their heads for years. Ostensibly triggered in London's Tottenham by the police shooting of a young black man, within 24 hours of the protest turning violent, cars were burning across the country and young, white pre-teen kids were looting supermarkets for cheap vodka.
 ... If you want to know who saw it coming, UNICEF warned things weren't looking good four years ago in 2007. 

In a strongly worded report it claimed that children growing up in the United Kingdom suffer greater deprivation, worse relationships with their parents and are exposed to more risks from alcohol, drugs and unsafe sex than those in any other wealthy country in the world.
It didn't predict, of course, that they'd start burning and looting as a result.

Then Cameron comes along cuts government, cuts services, claims Great Britain in broke ... and you can only wonder what took so long?  In Wisconsin our Governor has been nourishing  a similar group of deprived kids by reducing the ability of schools to teach or be proactive.  He has made access to education more difficult for everyone at every level ... all the while claiming improving educational opportunity is one of his top priorities.  At best the Governor believes for profit primary and secondary education in the hands of corporations will do better for kids than local school boards.  So is the formula ... wait four years for the current crop of youngsters to start hanging out on street corners?

WI 1848 Forward: #Truth-Out.org : The #Macroeconomics of London #Riots : #47% #99% #OWS #AARP vs #1% #Elites

Friday, August 12, 2011

Holperin vs Simac from Daily Kos


For example, on the simple question "How are you going to create jobs in Wisconsin?", Holperin says infrastructure. He talks about how the state can foster job creation by building and maintaining snowmobile, ATV, and biking trails to attract tourists. He mentions sensible fish and game policies to attract hunters and fishermen. He mentions a state "Main Street" program that has been helping small towns maintain their downtown business districts. Holperin says he has been very good at getting northern Wisconsin's fair share of these programs. Later he talks about a tax credit he got  passed for equipment used to harvest or process woody biomass, a "one-day" fishing license provision, and a hunter mentor program.
Simac responds by stumbling through a canned, non-specific "lower taxes, reduce regulations" answer that could be heard from any Tea Party candidate anywhere in America. Then, in a bizarre follow-up, she seems to endorse the state paying for high speed internet in the North Woods region of Wisconsin, presumably because she wants high-speed internet. I happen to agree with her on that, but I wonder how she proposes to pay for it when she also wants to eliminate gas and sales taxes, and wants to reduce or eliminate business taxes.
But the true depth of her ignorance was revealed when she responded to a question asking her which specific bills in the current legislative session she would either endorse or oppose:
Simac: I'm sorry, would you repeat that? Moderator: Sure. What specific legislation is moving through the Capitol right now that you look forward to - if elected - supporting or challenging?
Simac: Hmm, well, I think that . . . I guess I would have to say that with all of the things that I've been looking at, I think you just stumped me. All the things I've been looking at for all the last couple months here trying to get up on board as a new candidate, I've been trying to stay up with the issues, but I would have to say that I can't name you a single one right now.
It's an amateurish forum hosted by a radio group that used to air a program co-hosted by Simac and is generally hostile to Holperin. (The radio show archives have been deleted. I wonder why.)
The questioners consistently drop the ball when obvious follow-up questions are needed. At one point, they "remind" the candidates against personal attacks after Holperin quotes well-documented, anti-education statements that Simac has made.  Despite the bias, Holperin crushes Simac. Let's hope the same can be said Tuesday night. You can help by visiting Holperin For Senate to donate or volunteer
 Excerpted from Daily Kos

Originally posted to Giles Goat Boy on Thu Aug 11, 2011 at 08:07 PM PDT.

Also republished by Badger State Progressive and J Town.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

UPD: Bankers tell stories but politicians are worse!!

Several years ago (~early 2008) in reading The Black Swan (not the movie) by Nassim Nicholas Taleb I was reminded about how many times bankers and financial markets have got all of us into serious trouble.  Test yourself - what previous financial catastrophes or disasters can you recall.  I am sure you can all remember the current one, let's call it "derivatives" or maybe "real estate crash" - the latter probably makes it more personal and memorable.


Within our lifetimes anyone remember one from the 1980s or the savings and loan crisis!  I am not going to go into them - but read the book - I hope you are curious enough to do so!  

My takeaway from Taleb is that we collectively buy into and make up stories about events.  The worst of this is when we get the story wrong or perhaps do not even recall the past.  At the same time groups such as ALEC (American Legislative Exchange Council) act over a very long time horizon pursuing the goals of special interests, such as the Koch brothers, among many other targets.  Politicians buy into these agendas because (my narrative) they present what the politicians need to get elected - support from well organized groups, money and "pre-packaged ideas".  We the consumer only discover far too late what has been going on ... and then bankers and politicians start making up stories to exempt themselves from accountability.

They blame Keynes, the economist.  They blame regulation.  They blame NAFTA. They blame bankers.  They blame Wall Street. They blame the other politicians.


As Pogo said, "We have met the enemy and he is us."

Do I have a point?  Stay alert, even skeptical, stay informed, remember the past and realize that "politicians" may be well intentioned but whose methods and motives may not be well understood even by them!


Read more: http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,2088113,00.html#ixzz1UlD3TLZ0

WI 1848 Forward: UPD: #Bankers tell stories but #politicians are worse!! #47% #99% #ows vs #1% #elites

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Upd: Did Wisconsin recalls cost more or less than $137 million?

The paragraph below should resound very loudly if Democrats pull it off.  On the whole "The Wisconsin Voter", which the quote is from is always an interesting read.  The model is to present some facts and some interpretation.  In this particular column, Craig Gilbert, points out that this particular situation is extremely difficult to handicap.
 In short, five of the six districts in play Tuesday are clearly GOP-leaning in their makeup. That’s no surprise. These are all Senate seats held by Republicans in a terrible GOP year (2008). The GOP advantage isn’t huge. It’s not big enough to make these districts “safe” for Republicans. But it’s real.
JSOnline: The Democrats' big challenge in Tuesday's Wisconsin recalls: winning on GOP turf  8/8
There is no precedent for the amount of money spent.  If you add it to the money spent on Kloppenburg and Prosser and the money that is from the Citizens United camp it must be somewhere north of $137 million.

That number seems familiar?!  Oh yes that was the number Governor Walker used to claim that the "state is broke."  A few months later Wisconsin had a $600 million dollar surplus even before the so called "budget repair" was passed (as I recall).

8/12 : Governor Walker was on MSNBC this morning talking about the $30 million spent on elections (that could be counted) as if it was bad outside money  ... back in February he thought he was asking the Koch brothers for all of this outside money to support Republicans in the state since what he was forcing them to do was going put his majority in question ... how we spin and spin!!

Saturday, August 6, 2011

On the origins of the debt-ceiling crisis - PBS Need To Know via N+1 Magazine

Nothing easy here if you need to know - Republicans and Debt Crisis... you get the numbers honestly but you have to read

Letting one dollar equal a trillion, the total debt of the U.S. Government is roughly $14.27. This divides into $8.32 of public debt, which is held by other nations, individuals and institutions, and $5.95 of intragovernmental debt, which is owed to programs like Social Security and Medicare, and to the Federal Reserve.
Of the $8.32 of public debt, $4.47 is owed to other countries: $1.15 to China, $0.91 to Japan, $0.36 to the U.K., roughly $0.20 each to oil exporters and Brazil, and $1.70 to the rest of the world. $0.63 is due to mutual funds, $0.61 to private pension plans, and $0.31 to depositors like commercial banks, credit institutions and credit unions. Insurance companies hold $0.25 and savings bonds and state pensions $.018 each, while individuals, brokers and dealers, bank personal trusts and estates, corporate and non-corporate businesses and other investors are due $1.21. ...

WI 1848 Forward: On the origins of the #Debt , #Deficit - #PBS Need To Know via N+1 Magazine- #47% #AARP vs #Elites

PBS -Video: Simon Johnson on Europe’s debt crisis

PBS - From "Need to Know" -
The epicenter for the Europe’s current economic crisis is Greece, a country with only 11 million people. Why has this country’s debt created so much turmoil within Europe? And is it only a matter of time until the United States feels the effects as well? In a global economy where one nation’s financial crisis can cause a ripple affect halfway around the world, the debt crisis in Greece hits very close to home.
Simon Johnson, a former chief economist at the International Monetary Fund, talks with host Alison Stewart about how debt on both sides of the Atlantic will shape our economic futures for many years to come.



Watch the full episode. See more Need To Know.

PBS - In Perspective: Tricia Rose - America’s growing inequality

From "The Need to Know" PBS ...
The debt ceiling gridlock and the limited range of solutions being considered in Washington to solve our economic crisis are likely to worsen the enormous gaps in wealth, income and opportunity that already exist. While the politicians argue, we are careening toward establishing a society in which the lion’s share of money and opportunity is permanently consolidated at the very top. This goes well beyond balancing a budget: it goes to the heart of who we are and who we are going to be. 


WI 1848 Forward #PBS - In Perspective: Tricia Rose - America’s growing #inequality : #47% #99% #OWS #AARP vs #elites

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Why is the Stock Market down?

Circa 8/4/2011

There will be countless explanations offered in hindsight as  to why the stock market dropped 500+ points today!  The only true narrative is fear and uncertainty!  Others will say ...  it is Europe indebtedness, Congressional stalemate, bad economic policy being forced on us by a small minority ... no one can prove it.  We tend to always take recent events and try and use them to make ourselves feel better!  Does it help?  Not really ... fear and uncertainty still triumphs. 

The problem is that although I can  figure it out (he said euphemistically) I cannot count on you to figure it out ... so in our mutual confusion we continue to flounder!

Here is my narrative, which I am sure has been said by others, more articulately.  The Tea Party and Republicans have a grand strategy to get the Presidency back.  The big money interests such as the Koch brothers which have fanned the flames of national indebtedness as the source of all ills have probably seen their strategy backfire.  There is no doubt  that unless they (Koch Brothers) have parked all their money with hedge funds they are not as wealthy as they once were after today.

There will be every effort to blame all of this on President Obama.  Just remember it is spin, spin, spin, narrative, narrative, narrative and you need to speak up just as loudly with what you believe.

War and greed also known as Iraq and derivatives (and financial collapse) are why we are in this situation today.  Who started the war?  What caused the financial collapse? Not President Obama ... Republicans, Tea Party and Wall Street are the causal agents in my mind ... but we all let it happen by not paying attention to who we were electing locally and to Congress!

8/2011 Proposal? Why is Luther Olsen giving Charter Schools access to State Retirement System?

Perhaps everyone in the state should be able to participate in the WRS (Retirement System) ... what's the deal with certain Charter School employees?   Don't miss other provisions ... unlicensed teachers - what are the requirement going to be?  Who is being paid off here ... major contributors to Olsen (etc.) like Presidential Coalition, LLC, Citzens United, Presidential Coalition?

See Luther Olsen -- Presidential Coalition - More Out-of-State Money as one example.

Committee: Joint Committee on Finance
  AB-51 was referred to joint committee on Finance in the Assembly on August 2, 2011
      Bill History: http://www.legis.state.wi.us/2011/data/AB51hst.html
      Relating to: creating a Charter School Authorizing Board, providing additional charter school author...
 
All in Favor ---

Introduced by Representatives Vos, Kestell, Marklein, Van Roy, Kleefisch, Pridemore, Bies, Nass, Honadel, Ballweg, Knodl, Mursau and Jacque; cosponsored by Senators Darling, Olsen, Lazich, Vukmir, Kapanke and Galloway.

Authorizing Board, providing additional charter school authorizers, eliminating the limit on the number of pupils who may attend virtual charter schools, modifying teacher licensure requirements, eliminating the limit on the reduction in general school aid used to fund independent charter schools, covering certain charter school employees under the Group Insurance Board health coverage plan for local government employees, allowing a charter school to elect to participate in the Wisconsin Retirement System, granting rule-making authority, and making an appropriation.

WI 1848 Forward: 8/2011 Proposal? Why is Luther #Olsen giving #Voucher Schools access to State Retirement - #WRS?

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Walker's War on Education: AB 51 giving away public goods

Committee: Joint Committee on Finance
  AB-51 was referred to joint committee on Finance in the Assembly on August 2, 2011
      Bill History: http://www.legis.state.wi.us/2011/data/AB51hst.html
      Relating to: creating a Charter School Authorizing Board, providing additional charter school author...
 

All in Favor ---

Introduced by Representatives Vos, Kestell, Marklein, Van
Roy, Kleefisch, Pridemore, Bies, Nass, Honadel, Ballweg,
Knodl, Mursau and Jacque; cosponsored by Senators
Darling, Olsen, Lazich, Vukmir, Kapanke and Galloway.


Authorizing Board, providing additional charter school authorizers,
eliminating the limit on the number of pupils who may attend virtual
charter schools, modifying teacher licensure requirements, eliminating
the limit on the reduction in general school aid used to fund
independent charter schools
, covering certain charter school employees
under the Group Insurance Board health coverage plan for local
government employees, allowing a charter school to elect to participate
in the Wisconsin Retirement System, granting rule-making authority, and
making an appropriation. 


WI 1848 Forward: #Walker 's War on #Education: AB 51 giving away public goods! #vouchers and infrastructure

Monday, August 1, 2011

Luther Olsen -- Presidential Coalition - More Out-of-State Money

More ads and more ads basically promoting school choice, vouchers and firing old teachers ... that's the gist of this mornings ads MSNBC 8:15am - paid for by Presidential Coalition, LLC - another out-of-state organization.   Knowledge is power ... this kind of information is not knowledge

Their mantra from website -
The Presidential Coalition exists to educate the American public on the value of having principled conservative Republican leadership at all levels of government. From Abraham Lincoln to Ronald Reagan to George W. Bush, principled Republican Presidents have displayed the courage and wisdom necessary to guide our nation through some of our greatest and most difficult times. Their leadership has stood the test of time and made America great. These principled Republicans are the ideal role models for America's future leaders.
... 

As an affiliate of Citizens United The Presidential Coalition was organized to teach Americans about the significance of having Republican leadership throughout all levels of government. The conservative principles that Republican leaders believe in have made our country what it is today.
The Presidential Coalition teamed up with Dick Morris to promote the conservative values that we believe in. Dick Morris has played a pivotal role in advancing The Presidential Coalition’s mission of stopping the liberal agenda. He, like the rest of the top Conservative supporters, is concerned and ready to do his part to make America great again.
OUR FOUNDER
DAVID BOSSIE
David Bossie is the former chief investigator for the U.S. House Committee on Government Reform and Oversight. Bossie is the president of Citizens United and the executive producer of several critically acclaimed documentaries, including “Perfect Valor”, “Ronald Reagan: Rendezvous With Destiny”, “We Have The Power”, “Blocking ‘The Path to 9/11’”, “HYPE: The Obama Effect”, “Hillary The Movie”, “Rediscovering God in America”, “Border War: The Battle over Illegal Immigration”, “ACLU: At War with America”, “Broken Promises: The United Nations at 60”, and “Celsius 41.11”. Bossie is also the author of “Intelligence Failure: How Bill Clinton’s National Security Policy Set the Stage for 9/11” (2004; Nelson Current), “The Many Faces of John Kerry: Why This Massachusetts Liberal Is Wrong for America” (2004; Nelson Current) and “Prince Albert: The Life and Lies of Al Gore” (2000; Merill), which he co-wrote with Floyd Brown.