hearts and minds

October 26, 2008

Choice for a Change – a Change that is Necessary

For the first time in a very long time – several generations, at least – we will have more than one name on the general election ballot in Ozaukee and Washington counties (for state Senate district 20 as well as Assembly districts 58 and 60, and for state Senate district 8 as well as Assembly districts 23 and 24). When there is only one name on the ballot, and no viable challenge, decade after decade, the legislators doesn’t have to worry about how you and I are going to vote. And if they don’t have to worry about how we’re going to vote, the only thing left for them to worry about is how the corporate donors, lobbyists, and anonymous ad sponsors with a grasp on their party, expect them to act in office. That does not give us government of, by, and for the people. That imposes on us a government by and for corporations and lobbyists.

That sort of government, both in Madison and Washington, has burdened us with the greatest transfer of wealth in history, (more…)

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April 17, 2008

3 Up, 3 Down – Ozaukee County Softball

Filed under: government budgets,History,Iraq,War on Terror — Hearts & Minds @ 5:29 am

A discussion has been proceeding for the last month in the Ozaukee News-Graphic regarding the continuing occupation of Iraq. This column continues that important discussion, and asks that you contribute to it, as well.
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August 30, 2007

Assembly Runs the Budget Ball the Wrong Way

The Wisconsin state Assembly budget proposal cuts needed services while simultaneously increasing the state deficit, compared with the Senate budget proposal. The Assembly increases taxes on individuals, at the same time it disdains an opportunity to save Wisconsin businesses and individuals over one billion dollars annually while mounting a significant reform to correct the health care crisis. (more…)

October 8, 2006

Vote NO, NO, NO in NOvember

Filed under: government budgets,Taxes,War on Terror — Hearts & Minds @ 1:36 pm

The total cost of Congressional appropriations for the invasion and occupation of Iraq since 2003 has risen to a third of a trillion dollars. The portion of that 333 billion that Ozaukee County taxpayers have to pay is 117 million dollars. But those numbers don’t mean much to most of us. So I’m breaking it down here for mulling over a coffee or a beer or at the kitchen table.

117 million dollars comes to a dollar a second just from Ozaukee County taxpayers, just for the war in Iraq. A dollar every second for the last three and a half years. 117 million dollars averages close to three thousand dollars per household, so far. (more…)

August 6, 2006

Cheney visits Chappaquiddick

No doubt you recall my old friend, Sid D. Complex, who’s visited with us before in this column, on rare occasions over the last four years. Well, he and I decided to take a final winter opportunity to do some small game hunting. My mouth has been watering thinking about hasenpfeffer, and Sid, as you know, has his own preferences, which don’t usually coincide with mine. But we are both keen on joining the many other carnivores in the predatory pursuit of rabbits. C’mon along, if you like, but keep your safety on when you’re busting brush, and mind where your muzzle is pointed.
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With Respect to Fallibility

Admitting and correcting our mistakes keeps us in our own good graces, as well as of those we love and care for. It returns us to the proximity of perfection. Part of the burden of leadership is that the circle of people to whom we bear responsibility for mistakes is wider. Leadership requires us to love and care for those within that circle, and to admit and correct our mistakes. Or else we do not deserve that mantle.

The White House presumes that its current occupant and advisors are infallible. It refuses to admit, much less accept responsibility for or correct any mistakes whatsoever. The buck is passed, the fall guy is a private, and private citizens pay the piper.

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Nonsense’n’nobrainer: Questions of Our Congressman

Congressman Sensenbrenner’s latest Annual Questionnaire has come again, prepared and mailed at taxpayer expense. It began with the assertion that “The 109th Congress is involved with many issues vital to you, your family and the nation.”

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