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Gender: Female
Current location: Wisconsin
Member since: Sat Apr 14, 2007, 05:49 PM
Number of posts: 27,985

Journal Archives

How Wisconsin has changed my life in 2011.

I love my state. I always have. I have been proud to come form a place with such a rich history of Socialist movements, union and labor pride, and to be able to call a politician like Russ Feingold my representative. The mid-term elections broke my spirit and my heart. We lost a progressive voice, gained a worthless suit in his place and an evil monster at the helm of our state. I was devastated and wanted to just stop caring at all about politics. I gave up.

And then it happened.

On Feb. 7, with Wisconsin united in the afterglow of a Green Bay Packers victory in the Super Bowl, brand-new Gov. Scott Walker convened a dinner meeting of his Cabinet at the Governor's Mansion.

Walker held up a photo of President Ronald Reagan, who had famously fired striking air-traffic controllers, and said his plan to sweep away decades of protections for state public employees in a stop-gap budget bill represented "our time to change the course of history."

The budget-repair bill, which would strip most collective-bargaining rights from 175,000 public-sector workers while imposing immediate benefits concessions, went public four days later. Walker, a Republican, called for passage in the GOP-controlled Legislature within a week.

Read more: http://host.madison.com/wsj/news/local/govt-and-politics/article_3c7f9cd2-4274-11e0-8f25-001cc4c002e0.html#ixzz1i8tpUt8g

And the people of Wisconsin came together. Teachers, firefighters, business owners, Republicans, Democrats. We stood in the cold and snow and shouted at the top of our lungs that we wouldn't take it. For weeks. And the country and the world stood with us. Proudly.

The GOP tried to push through legislation illegally, our Democratic State Senators, after trying to reason with the unreasonable, fought for us and stood by us by heading to Illinois, leaving the Senate one member shy of the 20 senators required to vote on budget-related bills. Assembly Republicans began procedures to move the bill to a vote on February 22 while Democrats submitted dozens of amendments and conducted speeches. At 1:00 a.m. on February 25, following sixty hours of debate, the final amendments had been defeated and the Republican leadership of the Wisconsin State Assembly cut off debate as well as the public hearing and moved quickly to pass the budget repair bill in a sudden vote. The vote was 51 in favor and 17 opposed, with 28 representatives not voting. The final vote took place without warning, and the time allowed for voting was so short that fewer than half of the Democratic representatives were able to vote; many reportedly pushed the voting button as hard as possible but it did not register.

They went on to get their legislation passed, we had a mess of a Supreme Court race that exposed serious issues with the handling of our ballots accross the state, especially here in my home of Waukesha County. But even on the tails of that, we Democrats stood up and together. We worked our asses off at the recount for weeks on end, challenging everything and forcing the County and municipalities to get their shit together. We formed committees and are observing every election with our own eyes.

And we recalled Senators. We didn't get the majority, but we gained 2 seats and lost none.

Our state Democratic convention was invigorating and inpiring. I was able to thank these fine Democrats for all of their hard work as well as hug, laugh and cry with them.

And now we're out again in the cold and snow recalling Walker, Kleefisch and even a Fitzgerald. It's not over for us and we have not lost. We're taking this great state back.

I know that the Occupy movement has been front and center since it began, as it should be... but don't forget Wisconsin. It has changed my life and breathed new air into my 'give-a-shit' meter. It has shown me that there are politicians who care. And they're Democrats. With spine. I am not alone when I say it and all of you who have stood with us has changed my life. So, as the year ends, DU... don't forget about us!

On Wisconsin.

By building him up, by supporting him, by taking him seriously, you are not driving a wedge

into the heart of the Republican Party--you are only giving him a helping hand along the road to his goal of destroying just about everything you stand for.

He is against public funding of schools, head start, college assistance, medicare, medicaid
He is against social security
He is for unfettered gun control

He's also wrong on:
Women's reproductive rights
Gay Rights
Church-State Separation
International Relations
Worker rights
Campaign finance reform
Universal health care
and he wants to privatize EVERYTHING

Fuck him.

Paul strikes a chord with the most selfish of our society.

He is dangerous because people are totally duped by a few topics they THINK they agree with him on. He's dangerous because some people who think they are liberal defend him.

His UN/NWO bullshit is just that. Bullshit. The UN has no way to affectthe 2nd Amendment or any portion of the US Constitution. People are defending a very paranoid, xenophobic crazy-man. aPaulogists are like cult members. His ideas are stupid, and won't work in the real world. It's no wonder that most of his supporters are people who don't understand what it means to live as self-supporting members of society.

It's ok though, because he's not going to win, which will give what his blindered believers what they really want anyway; the ability to declare that his defeat is because he's just too pure and good for our corrupt system. We don't *deserve* Ron Paul, in much the way we don't *deserve* a puppy!

’Twas the Night Before Recall

‘Twas the night before Recall, and all through the state
Of Wisconsin were voters who scarcely could wait

The papers were xeroxed and readied with care
In fond hopes of the signatures soon to be there

The children were slumbering, home safely from schools
Which were gutted and cut by Republican ‘tools’

With our Recall Scott Walker sign stuck in the lawn
My wife and I planned to arise with the dawn

And set out, door to door, to those neighbors we knew
Who were just as disgusted at Scooter and Crew

When down from the street there arose such a blast
I thought, Lord, what new hell has the GOP passed?

The November air, once so chilly and quiet
Was filled with excitement; could it be a riot?

A storm, it was breaking; not one from the sky
But a groundswell that rose with a hue and a cry

When what to my wondering eye appear’d at last
But a figure in black from a century past

He marched with a fist raised in manner defiant
While his workers upon ev’ry word were reliant

“On Wausau! On Oshkosh! On Point and Milwaukee!
Kenosha and Ashland! Yes, you too, Pewaukee!

To each office and home, till you reach one and all
Now sign away, sign away, sign to Recall!”

They came from their neighborhoods, came from their jobs,
They came, though reviled as thugs and as slobs

They came from Menasha, Monona and Merrill
They came, for they knew that their state was in peril

There were Waukesha folk, not a lot, it was plain
But they worked with resolve like their county was Dane

Now who was their leader, this fiery speaker
Who roused them when they should grow sullen or weaker?

His clothes were familiar, his stance, it was steel’d
But the night kept his features from being revealed

I awaited the chance when mayhap we would meet
As he solemnly marched up my once-sleepy street

Then … a turn! Now a street lamp! Epiphany in light!
And we saw Bob La Follette returned for the fight!

No ephemeral ghost, but substantial in power
That grew from his minions, was fed by the hour

And at last I could see, and with joy understand
That the Progressive Spirit returned to our land

Then our gaze finally met, dear old Bob’s and my own
And for one beat in time, we were two souls alone

He gave me a smile, I returned it in kind
Though one living, one not, we were of the same mind

As I saw tears a-welling from dusty old lids
I held my wife close, and we thought of our kids

For this task to be done wasn’t for here and now
But for those to come after, so they would see how

We must always be wary and watchful and wise
For greed and corruption takes any disguise

And when given the chance, shapes the world to its wishes
But Wisconsin’s not open to those avaricious

Bob La Follette, he knew it, and now we do too
Though the task is historic, we must see it through

Then Bob gave me a nod, and the night closed around
As he slipped from my view, making nary a sound

But I heard him exclaim as he marched out of sight,
“Happy Recall to all! Never give up the fight!”

Read more: http://host.madison.com/ct/news/opinion/column/steven-p-senski-twas-the-night-before-recall/article_fa0d87ee-2b65-5255-8218-5b03d6904441.html?mode=story#ixzz1hPWkfxeQ

‘Twas the Night Before Iowa … (A Visit From St. Reagan)

‘Twas the night before Iowa, when all through the state,
The wingnuts were fuming, their heads fat with hate.
The caucus was planned, in just over a week,
Yet the GOP candidates were unelectable freaks!

The reporters were nestled, in bedbug motels.
Their noses recoiling from strange Iowa smells.
Of corn syrup fields, and thick manure dollops,
and visions of Newt giving trinkets to trollops.

When out in the lobby there arose such a clatter,
Candy Crowley ran out to see what was the matter.
Out by the remote truck, a big plane had crashed.
And a zombie crawled out with a sackful of cash.

The moonlight it bounced off the black salted ice,
As the undead old man told the same dumb joke twice.
Then he turned mean and weird and his voice was a bark,
Aimed at eight tiny cretins holding hands in the dark.

This grim wrinkled ghoul in his Air Force One slippers,
I knew in a flash that it must be The Gipper!
More vapid than talk shows, more empty than air.
Could this rotten old corpse save the eight cretins there?

Much MUCH more at link: http://wonkette.com/458786/twas-the-night-before-iowa-a-visit-from-st-reagan

News Bulletin: Ron Paul Is a Huge Racist

With Ron Paul ascending in Iowa, winning the hearts of independents, and even the endorsement of Andrew Sullivan, it’s worth pointing something out: Ron Paul is not a kindly old libertarian who just wants everybody to be free. He’s a really creepy bigot.

Around four years ago, James Kirchick reported a lengthy story delving into Paul’s worldview. As Kirchick writes, Paul comes out of an intellectual tradition called “paleolibertarianism,” which is a version of libertarianism heavily tinged with far-right cultural views. The gist is that Paul is tied in deep and extensive ways to neo-Confederates, and somewhat less tightly to the right-wing militia movement. His newsletter, which he wrote and edited for years, was a constant organ of vile racism and homophobia. This is not just picking out a phrase here and there. Fear and hatred of blacks and gays, along with a somewhat less pronounced paranoia about Jewish dual loyalty, are fundamental elements of his thinking. The most comparable figure to Paul is Pat Buchanan, the main differences being that Paul emphasizes economic issues more, and has more dogmatically pro-market views.

How, then, has Paul become a figure of admiration among social liberals?

One reason is that nobody is attacking him. Paul is (correctly) considered to have no chance to actually win the GOP nomination, so debate moderators have not bothered to research his past, instead tossing off generalized questions that allow him to portray himself on his preferred terms. The Republican Establishment is focusing all its fire on Newt Gingrich, and indeed, Paul’s rise in Iowa would greatly aid Mitt Romney’s campaign by preventing an acceptable alternative from emerging from the state with momentum.

Read more at: http://nymag.com/daily/intel/2011/12/news-bulletin-ron-paul-is-a-huge-racist.html

The Case for Repealing ALL Anti-Abortion Laws

This was in the Choice Forum on DU2 and I think it deserves a spot in this new home. Joyce is my favorite author and I adore her and her work.

Long, but a great read.

(PDF) http://www.arcc-cdac.ca/action/repeal.pdf

No country needs to regulate abortion via criminal or civil law. Only when abortion has the same legal status as any other health procedure can it be fully integrated into women’s reproductive healthcare.

by Joyce Arthur

The repeal of abortion laws is supported by evidence from Canada, the only democratic country in the world with no laws restricting abortion since 1988. Abortions have since become earlier and safer, and the number of abortions has become moderate and stable. Current abortion care reflects what most Canadians are comfortable with, and women and doctors act in a timely and responsible manner, with no need for regulation.

Several legal arguments help build the case for abortion law repeal. A constitutional guarantee of women’s equality can be used to overturn abortion laws, and ensure that abortion is funded by the healthcare system as a medically-required service. Freedom of religion, the right to privacy, and the right to self-defense can also be used to strike down laws. All anti-abortion restrictions are unjust, harmful, and useless because they rest on traditional religious and patriarchal foundations. Laws kill and injure women, violate their human rights and dignity, impede access to abortion, and obstruct healthcare professionals.

Solutions for Repealing Anti-abortion Laws
Here’s some suggested solutions to get rid of harmful anti-abortion laws:
* Guarantee women’s equality in countries’ constitutions.
* Collect evidence of laws’ harms, find plaintiffs, and challenge laws in court.
* Lobby government against abortion restrictions (meet with legislators, submit briefs).
* Educate media, government, health professionals, and public about the harm and futility of abortion restrictions.
* Challenge the religious basis of anti-abortion laws, and keep church and state separate.
* Change the rhetoric: Abortion is not a “necessary evil.” Abortion is a moral and positive choice that liberates women, saves lives, and protects families.
* Empower women in society by changing public policies.
* Change patriarchal attitudes about women and motherhood through advocacy and education.
* Prioritize childcare and child-rearing as a universal concern, not a “woman’s issue.”

Some of these proposed solutions are obviously very difficult and would take many years. But one has to start somewhere.

To conclude, no country needs any laws against abortion whatsoever. We can trust women to exercise their sensible moral judgment; we can trust doctors to exercise their professional medical judgment, and that’s all we need to regulate the process.
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