Uppity Wisconsin

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Joining Hands and Respecting Differences

Senator Kathleen Vinehout
 
“We try very hard to not have political discussions at our family gatherings,” my friend told me over dinner.
 
“How sad,” I replied. This comment – one I’ve heard many times in past months – stood in sharp contrast to the enthusiastic spirit of community I felt the night before.
 
I joined many neighbors in celebrating the release of a new album of local music. The accomplishment is a collaboration of three local musicians – Yata, Sinz and Orfield - in a delightful compilation entitled Dancing in the Light.
 
The crowd was enthusiastic, clapping in time with the music. One couple joined hands to dance even among the standing-room-only crowd.
 
As we left the concert, neighbors reminded each other of the dinner coming up in Alma. Parishioners at St John’s Lutheran Church will join hands to host a fundraiser for the victims of the flood in Buffalo County.
 
Somehow, we must figure out a way of taking the “joining of hands” from our local neighborhoods and apply it to the big decisions we make at the state and national levels.




So - the time has come

It's time to vote. This election leaves us with real choices - Please, let's not hear the "both parties are the same" argument. All the way through the ticket we have people from both of the major parties who genuinely are different. 

I'm not going to re-hash the presidential race, as I am sure you are all tired of hearing about it. I know I am. Let's just say that you have a choice tomorrow that will influence the direction of the country for years to come, from treatment of the environment, our behavior toward immigrants, and perhaps most clearly, who will be on the supreme court for many years to come. I'm counting on all of you to go out and do right by your families, your kids, and yourselves. 





Think of the things we can do

If we had a Republican in the White House, a Republican majority in the house, and a Republican majority in the United States Senate, think of the things we can do.

Scott Walker last night during Donald Trump''s appearance in Eau Claire.

Frankly I have thought of little else for the past year. We might very quickly move from having a completely incapacitated government to a completely demonical one, laying the groundwork for regression in the US for decades to come. Imagine a more conservative Supreme Court for at least  a generation, continual suppression of voting rights, mass deportation, camps full of people on their way out, and a country headed by someone who has no respect for the law and who will be in court immedately after taking office both for business chicanery and child rape.

Think of the things they can do. Then on Tuesday go vote to make sure they can't do it.





Wisconsin: Vote for Clean Water on Nov. 8

Here are four candidates who have pledged to protect clean water and stand up to Big Ag: Lynn Utesch (WI State Assembly District 1) David Gorski (WI State Assembly District 72) Mary Hoeft (U.S. House of Representatives, District 7) Russ Feingold (United States Senate)




Wisconsin Republicans Are Compromised, Water Warrior Lynn Utesch Fights

Please vote Lynn Utesch for Assembly on November 8. Our very survival as a state we can call home, depends on it. Our state Republicans are compromised beyond hope




Local Referenda Replace the Lack of State Education Funds

By
Senator Kathleen Vinehout
 
From Arrowhead to West Salem, voters across the state are considering the future of their school districts when they go to the polls. Citizens in 46 districts will be asked to approve referenda.
 
Some questions relate to the building of new facilities. However, 46% of this year’s referenda are for the on-going expenses of operating local schools.
 
I received many calls about school funding, property taxes and the problems underlying the questions voters face on the ballot.




Central Wisconsin Is Heart of Wisc Campaign 2016

David Gorski's campaign has Big Ag frightened because Gorski is leading a number of reformers running for public office who fight for tourism, public schools, recreation and water as the life blood of their communities, while extolling the economic benefits of these very resources.




Feingold the "Complete Phony"? Days Before Election, Ron Johnson Becomes a Gun Owner

U.S. Senator Ron Johnson has been frothing at the mouth lately, calling Russ Feingold "a complete phony" because, in Johnson's view, Feingold is an "arrogant elite" and not the regular guy persona that Wisconsinites think they know.

Meanwhile, Johnson insists he's not the arrogant elite that Wisconsinites have come to know.  You see, everyone has got it all wrong:  Before he went to the Senate in 2010, he spent the previous 35 years as a simple "working man."   Just a good 'ol boy, never meanin' no harm.





RoJo Ad Hits Feingold PAC for "Spending Nearly Half" on Fundraising? Umm... Paul Ryan Spends 67%

In U.S. Senator Ron Johnson's latest ad, they're apoplectic at the notion of a Political Action Committee (PAC) spending "nearly half" of their contributions on fundraising for more contributions.

Although this may seem like a lot, it depends on how you look at it.  If you spend six dollars to bring in ten (a four dollar net gain), it's better than spending one dollar to bring in three (a two dollar net gain).

Plus, only a small percentage of fundraising appeals yield money.  However, the 95% of the people that just read the fundraising letter or web ad and don't give are still armed with the information that it contained and are more likely to vote and volunteer their time.  All this is part of the calculation.





Halloween Monsters, GOP Style

Halloween seems like the right time for a hike down memory lane to review the goblins and ghouls that inhabit the Republican underworld. Let us start with the main monster: Donald Trump. Beyond our wildest imagination, this Republican nominee for president is the most frightening gargoyle of all time. Almost daily we learn of new revelations that show how disturbed and dangerous he is. His latest boasts of being a sexual predator may be the wooden stake aimed at his vampire heart. With the majority of women now denouncing him it has almost certainly closed off his path to the White House. What is unknown is how society will deal with his horrendous transgressions. The many women he allegedly assaulted makes a strong case for criminal investigation, and this option has credibility given the leaders now suggesting it was a crime, including First Lady Michelle Obama, and Vice President Joe Biden.





Go Vote…Even on Saturday

By
Senator Kathleen Vinehout
 
On a beautiful October Saturday afternoon, my college-student son and I went to vote. Afterwards, I breathed a huge sigh of relief.
 
Just between you and me, I worried about my son voting. Would he come home before Election Day? Would he know the rules about mail-in ballots?
 
Mail-in early voting is complex.
 
You must request the ballot by mail by downloading the ballot request form. (http://elections.wi.gov/sites/default/files/gab_forms/4/el_121_application_for_absentee_ballot_2016_08_p_44421.pdf). You fill out the ballot request form and make sure you mail it so your clerk receives it by 5:00 pm November 3rd  2016.




Join Wis.community

The Wis.community web site is a new project for my web development company. Think of it as a set of  mini-sites about different topcs and (eventually) different parts of the state. At the moment we're concentrating on the Chippewa Valley.  If you are in the area please join me at our first Community Meeting -- at 6 PM on Monday the 24th.  The meeting will be in the classroom at the beautiful classroom at Menomonie Market Food Co-op - it's upstairs in the office area. We will be talking about what Wis.community can do now, and what people would like to see in the future.  See you there!!





Central Wisconsin Stands Tall

From the heart of Wisconsin comes democracy and a battle for the water the likes this state has never seen. Monthly Meeting of Protect Wood County and Its Neighbors Date: Monday October 24th Time: 6:30PM Location: Saratoga Town Hall




Rally at Wisconsin Capitol on Oct 22 for Clean Water

Clean and safe water - Rally and party at the Madison, Wisconsin Capitol on Oct 22, Saturday from 10 a.m. to Noon, and after. We're fighting for clean and safe water from the biological, chemical, and economic attack from industrialized ag factories.




Organizing Co-op helps to pass CAFO moratorium

The Dunn County Board last night passed a six month moratorium on CAFO expansion of more than 10% on farms of over 1000 animals in the county. This is in response to a very large expansion of Cranberry Creek Farm planned for the county, and was prompted by many questions raised about the ability of the farm owners to manage runoff, and some serious issues with the application and the ability of the DNR to properly consider the issues  in awarding a permit. The permit is for an expansion of up to 7150 animals.





Private School Subsidy for Special Education Raises Concerns About Quality and Cost

By
Senator Kathleen Vinehout
 
“When you write about tax money going to private schools, please tell people about special education vouchers,” a rural school board member told me. “Because of a change in state law, our school district is paying for special education students to sit at home in front of a computer.”
 
October is budget time for school districts. The rural school board member just saw the new budget and learned of the high cost for special needs students who are now attending an online school with $12,000 per student of school funds.




Open Letter to Wisconsin Secretary of Agriculture from Rome

Got enough milk? Yes, we do. The enormous milk glut has prompted industrialized dairy factories to dump 43 million gallons of milk as nitrates and phospherous ravage steams, lakes and groundwater, amid growing report of Blue Baby Syndrome. This is indecent.




Lynn Utesch Generating Headlines

Coming off a League of Women Voters candidate forum this week in Door County, Lynn Utesch was roundly praised for a passionate and erudite performance that "cleaned the clock of" State Rep. Joel Kitchens, in the words of a Utesch supporter. Now, along with the Gorski-Krug race in assembly district 72, Utesch is gaining currency as a major pick-up opportunity in an election that may see some one dozen Democratic Party gains should the political trajectory keep moving towards a wave cycle.




There Is Something Wrong with Big Ag, So Let's Beat Them

Big Ag is spending $Six figures on the lackeys in the legislature who run political interference for the polluters and poisoners of our families and communities. Rightwing money allied with Big Ag is working to defeat State Sen. Julie Lassa and Dave Gorski in central Wisconsin, Here's what we can all do ...




School Privatization Money Pours into Central Wisconsin

In rightwing land, it's indecent. The way to campaign is for Scott Krug and his extremist friends to inflict as much psychological abuse as possible on a disabled rights champ, educator and public school advocate by claiming he is against rights for the disabled and public schools. Welcome to the muck where Krug resides.




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