By: Brian Sikma
The passionate rhetoric surrounding Governor Scott Walker’s decision to turn down federal Medicaid expansion funds (which would cost the state hundreds of millions of dollars down the road) has perhaps gotten out of hand. On Tuesday, Robert Kraig of the liberal group Citizen Action of Wisconsin said Walker’s decision would result in the deaths of Wisconsin citizens. Then on Wednesday, a commenter on Citizen Action’s Facebook page wished notorious cop-killer Christopher Dorner could kill the governor.
After Citizen Action linked to a news story about Walker’s decision, a man calling himself Nic Fury commented, “I wish Dorner was around to slaughter Walker’s sociopathic ass!” Dorner is a reference to Chris Dorner, a former Los Angeles Police Department officer and ex-Navy Reserve officer who went on a killing spree that led to a massive manhunt that ended Tuesday evening.
Fury’s own Facebook page says that he works for Riverwest Radio, a little-known online alternative radio station. He also says he is a student at UW Milwaukee. A request to Riverwest Radio to confirm Fury’s work with them was not immediately answered.
The news story that Fury commented on was a Milwaukee Journal Sentinel piece that quoted Citizen Action’s Robert Kraig as a credible source for an opposing point of view on Walker’s plan. On Tuesday, Kraig said in a press release, “If Governor Walker turns down billions in federal money for BadgerCare, there is no doubt that many Wisconsinites will die as a consequence.” That the Journal Sentinel‘s reporters and editors ignored Kraig’s outrageous comment and went on to quote him as a reputable source is remarkable.
In response to the news that Governor Scott Walker is likely to announce Wednesday that he will not expand Medicaid in Wisconsin with ObamaCare money, the left side of the ideological and political spectrum quickly degenerated into a fact-free zone of rhetoric and hyperbole. One left-wing healthcare expert, Robert Kraig, the executive director of Citizen Action of Wisconsin, went so far as to say Walker would be responsible for the deaths of Wisconsin citizens if he turned down the federal money.
The new conservative media outlet RightWisconsin.com was the first to write about Kraig’s shocking statement.
According to Kraig:
If Governor Walker turns down billions in federal money for BadgerCare, there is no doubt that many Wisconsinites will die as a consequence.
Actually, Kraig doesn’t have his facts straight according to research compiled by other healthcare experts. According to several studies, individuals who rely on Medicaid are more likely to have longer hospital stays, higher chance of death after surgery, and the cost of their overall healthcare is higher than those on private insurance and even those without insurance.
In general, proponents of expanding Medicaid through state medical assistance programs in Wisconsin have repeatedly ignored key facts in making their argument.
Just six months after a Milwaukee County Sheriff’s deputy died in the line of duty, a liberal Milwaukee columnist minimized the jobs of sheriff’s deputies. Joel McNally, a contributing columnist to the Shepherd Express and the CapTimes, blasted not only Sheriff David Clarke but also suggested that deputies don’t have much to worry about in their line of work. McNally’s column was primarily an attack on comments made by Sheriff Clarke about citizens assuming personal responsibility for their own safety.
In attacking the sheriff, McNally lumped the entire sheriff’s department together and belittled the hazards deputies face. He suggested that deputies are not involved dangerous occupations.
Even though Clarke wears a gunslinger’s playsuit in public, his office is hardly the first place citizens ever look for protection from violent crime.
The primary duties of the sheriff’s office are to nab speeders on county freeways and to provide deputies for highly secure courtrooms and detention facilities.
McNalley is a frequent critic of Sheriff Clarke (D) and Governor Scott Walker (R) and regularly pens columns attacking their statements or actions.
The Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Office does oversee traffic enforcement on the several freeways that run through the county. Describing the work as simply to “nab speeders” may not sit well with the officers who do the work.
In July of last year, Sergio Aleman, a Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Deputy, was killed in the line of duty on the portion of the I-43 freeway that runs through downtown Milwaukee. Aleman died after his police vehicle crashed while responding to another accident on the interstate.
Deputy Aleman’s death was a reminder to the entire Milwaukee region that law enforcement officers, including those involved in highway patrols, are engaged in a dangerous occupation. Broad brushing deputies, who may or may not agree with their sheriff’s public statements, and dismissing the dangers of their occupation is hardly a way to show respect or prove a political point about their superiors.
By Collin Roth
On Sunday night, the Democratic Party of Milwaukee County awarded State Rep. Jocasta Zamarripa and Milwaukee County Supervisor John Weishan as “Elected Officials of the Year.” In choosing Rep. Zamarripa and Sup. Weishan, the Milwaukee County Democrats ought to have re-named the award “Elected Bully of the Year” given the actions of these two individuals over the last year.
Rep. Jocasta Zamarripa has been the elected official most active in the Voces de la Frontera led effort to attack and bully Palermo’s Pizza on trumped up charges that the Milwaukee-based company used an Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) raid as revenge for union organizing at the plant. In October 2012, Rep. Zamarripa issued a lengthy statement accusing Palermo’s of being a business that “exploits their workers” and claiming undocumented workers were fired under “bogus anti-immigrant pretenses.” The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) dismissed these charges in November 2012, but not after months of misinformation and accusations from Rep. Zamarripa. For months on end, Palermo’s has had to fight to defend and preserve it’s reputation in the face of strikes and boycotts organized and supported by Voces and Rep. Zamarripa.
And as for Sup. John Weishan, Dan Bice reported in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel on Monday that Weishan confronted fellow County Supervisor Deanna Alexander on her plans to hold a town hall meeting to discuss reforms that could reduce the size, staff, and pay of the Milwaukee County Board. According to Bice, Weishan was so determined to discourage Sup. Alexander from hosting a town hall with constituents that he made Alexander cry.
[Alexander] said Weishan met with her privately and urged her to cancel the meeting.
“I left the meeting feeling very bruised by one of my colleagues,” Alexander said. “I was crying by the end of the conversation.”
On Friday, Weishan said the two did meet. He said he simply suggested that she wait to get public comment until Sanfelippo officially submitted his bill in Madison.
Yes, Alexander was quite upset, but Weishan said he kept a calm tone throughout.
The Democratic Party of Milwaukee County certainly honored their very finest on Sunday night. One elected official who bullies businesses and peddles misinformation. Another belittles and verbally accosts fellow colleagues who think differently than him. Classy choices.
By Collin Roth
On the 40th Anniversary of Roe v. Wade, Rep. Gwen Moore (D-Milwaukee) appeared on the liberal cable news network MSNBC to talk about the landmark supreme court case that made abortion legal in America. But Rep. Moore’s comments on the Roe v. Wade and the state of abortion in America were a bit peculiar.
MOORE: This is the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the ability for women to have a safe and legal abortion. But it really is 40 years of affirming motherhood. And to say, as we’ve said in our oath of office that we take, it should be done willfully without purpose of evasion and that we go into it mindful of the responsibility that is ahead of us. Parenting is difficult on your best day. And it doesn’t serve children, and it certainly doesn’t serve women to be forced into parenthood. And I think this is what the public has come to understand. That safe, legal abortions are very important for the health of children, women, the institution of motherhood, family, and ultimately to our society. The costs to our society are tremendous when children are unwanted or their parents are unprepared to take on this tremendous responsibility.
Striking a similar note, Rep. Moore said in a 2011 speech on the House floor that “Planned Parenthood is healthy for women, healthy for children, and healthy for our society” making the case that unplanned pregnancies result in a poor quality of life for children and women.
In 2012, Planned Parenthood received a record $542 million in taxpayer funding and conducted over 334,000 abortions in 2011. Since the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision, over 55 million abortions have been conducted in the United State of America.
By Collin Roth
On Tuesday, the Racine Journal Times urged the Racine Unified School District to “discuss” a controversial and radical document proposed by the youth arm of Voces de la Frontera, but to ultimately “take no action on it.” The “Student Bill of Rights,” proposed for consideration by the Voces-sponsored Youth Empowered in the Struggle (YES), extends “rights” to students far beyond what the Constitution, Bill of Rights, and subsequent court interpretations have affirmed.
And according to the Education Action Group (EAG), State Superintendent Tony Evers endorsed the YES sponsored “Student Bill of Rights,” calling the document “reasonable” and “well thought out.” When confronted on camera by EAG, Superintendent Evers was not very eager to discuss his endorsement.
Of the 43 enumerated “rights” and goals of the “Student Bill of Rights,” not all are controversial. But there are radical provisions within the document that are cloaked by admirable goals such as having safe schools and no discrimination. In many ways, the “Student Bill of Rights” provides students with “rights” as if students were organized in a union. A brief list of the controversial provisions include:
- Students have a right to a school environment where all teachers and staff have the right to collectively bargain.
- Students who have plans to enter the work force should be provided with worker rights orientation in the same way that college-bound students receive support to continue their education.
- Schools must document the demographics of students who are reprimanded by police in school, suspended, or expelled, in order to track and protect against racial profiling.
- Students have the right to a focused and peaceful environment through mutual respect between teachers and students. This should translate into equal power dynamics in the classroom and expectations applied equally to both students and adults.
As the “Student Bill of Rights” moves towards discussion and perhaps even a vote in Racine, the question must be asked whether Superintendent Tony Evers believes this document that he called “reasonable” ought to be adopted in Racine and potentially elsewhere throughout Wisconsin?
YES worked extensively during both the June 2012 recall election and the 2012 general election, canvassing Racine during school hours on behalf of Democratic candidates Tom Barrett, John Lehman, Barack Obama, and Tammy Baldwin. YES is sponsored wholesale by Voces de la Frontera, a radical pro-union immigrants rights group that has organized a national boycott of Palermo’s Pizza.
By: Brian Sikma
State Senator Mike Ellis (R-Neenah), who once called a Green Bay school a “sewer” before being forced to apologize after his comments became public, has long been an opponent of expanding school choice in Wisconsin. Senator Ellis told the Associated Press on Thursday that he is prepared to block any expansion of school choice this session if it does not first require the approval of local residents before the program is expanded.
According to the Associated Press story:
Republican state Senate President Mike Ellis says he will oppose any expansion of school vouchers in Wisconsin unless local residents are first required to vote on such a move.
Ellis told The Associated Press on Thursday that he has made it known that he will block any expansion of the program without that element. Such a requirement is sure to generate opposition from supporters of expanding vouchers beyond Milwaukee and Racine.
Senator Ellis has a long history of blocking or slowing the expansion of school choice in Wisconsin. Education reform advocates argue that parents and students should have the opportunity to leave underperforming public schools for charter and choice schools that can provide them with a higher quality education. Your zip code shouldn’t determine your educational opportunity, the reformers argue.
Originally developed for Milwaukee as the Milwaukee Parental Choice Program, Wisconsin’s school choice program allows for alternative schools to be created and then funded in part by state education dollars on a per-pupil basis. The program is monitored to insure taxpayer dollars are not being wasted and was expanded to the City of Racine last legislative session.
In addition to calling Green Bay’s Preble High School a “sewer,” Ellis said the school had “the poverty possum.” Other lawmakers from the Green Bay area immediately distanced themselves from Ellis’s remarks last year.
By: Brian Sikma
Hours before being arrested as the alleged suspect in a bomb scare at the Wisconsin state Capitol, Kvon Smith posted a comment to his Facebook page naming both well known and lesser-known individuals as “Robin Hoods.” Smith apparently intended the statement to be a compliment. Among the individuals he named as worthy people was Osama bin Laden, the terrorist leader responsible for the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks that took the lives of nearly 3,000 Americans.
According to media reports, Kvon Smith has been taken into custody and charges are pending. A more detailed Media Trackers’ report on Smith’s background and prior fascination with violence can be found here.
It is not yet clear whether or not Smith actually possessed a working explosive device at the Capitol or if it was merely a good ruse.
By Collin Roth
Sly is back. And the Left in Wisconsin couldn’t be more overjoyed.
On the day before Thanksgiving, progressive Madison radio-host John ‘Sly’ Sylvester and the entire news team of 1670 WTDY were laid off after the station made a decision to change programming. Madison liberals entered into a depression, fearing their sole voice on the radio was gone for good. Conservatives rejoiced, recounting the vile and off-color comments of Sly in post-mortems.
But just two months later, Sly announced in Madison that he is returning to the airwaves on 93.7 WEKZ for a 3-6 PM slot that will broadcast in Southern Wisconsin, Northern Illinois, and even parts of Eastern Iowa.
And with no small bit of irony, the Left in Wisconsin were clamoring over one another to congratulate Sly on his return.
Madison liberals were so very happy for the return of the very host that former NAACP President Kweisi Mfume rebuked in 2004 for making remarks about former Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice that were “just as bad as those who hide under sheets and burn crosses.”
The Left in Wisconsin was overjoyed that they would no longer be deprived of the radio host who sadistically laughed about pouring weed-killer on the grave of conservative activist Andrew Breitbart just days after the father of two unexpectedly passed away.
The Left in Wisconsin will now be able to tune in and once again hear the fever-swamp ramblings of a man who seriously posited on-air his belief that Governor Walker would have his former aide murdered before testifying in the John Doe case.
And of course, the Left in Wisconsin is so pleased that they can snicker at the sick humor of a radio host who mocked Lt. Governor Kleefisch’s cancer and joked that she committed sex acts on Milwaukee radio hosts.
From the Democratic Party of Wisconsin and One Wisconsin Now, to John Nichols and WEAC, the Left is ecstatic about the return of the radio host who says all the unfiltered and ugly things they all wish they could say.
By Paul Thurman
On Friday, Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke Jr. ripped Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett for his comments at an anti-gun summit held Thursday in Minneapolis, describing Barrett’s words as “disingenuous.”
Sheriff Clarke said in a statement today that Mayor Barrett’s comments were “nothing more than a masked attempt to infringe on law-abiding people’s Second Amendment protection.” Clarke went on to say in a statement:
”If Mayor Barrett really wanted to curb gun violence in the city of Milwaukee, he would join me in demanding that gun offenders stop being released back into Milwaukee neighbors by a lenient judiciary, and instead face longer prison sentences. Not holding repeat criminals accountable allows this pattern of violence to continue. When will Tom Barrett ever understand this?”
Clarke goes on to ask Barrett to, “focus on the risk factors of street crime and leave the Constitution alone.”
Mayor Tom Barrett, who co-hosted the summit with Minneaopolis Mayor R.T. Rybak said, he is “taking a stand against gun violence.” The day long summit featured Mayors, police chiefs, and prosecutors from around the Midwest to talk about how to curb future gun violence in their city.
Mayor Barrett claims tighter laws on semi-automatic weapons and stopping loopholes with private gun sales is a way to reduce gun violence.
Sheriff Clarke disagrees and adds that the real risk factors for crime and violence in the city is that “Milwaukee is the fourth-poorest city in America, high black male unemployment, a failing K-12 school system, and young black males are growing up without a well-adjusted, engaged father in their lives.”