Thursday, March 31, 2011
Wednesday, March 30, 2011
"Ye that love the LORD, hate evil: he preserveth the souls of his saints; he delivereth them out of the hand of the wicked." ~ Psalm 97:10
Monday, March 28, 2011
What are we doing in Libya? I have heard the question asked time and time again in chat rooms and on blogs. No one quite seems to know what we're doing in Libya. That's a good question but a better question is how are we doing what we're doing in Libya.
We have a voluntary military force. That means that our families and friends, our brothers and sisters, who sign up for military service, who sign up and in the process sacrifice their constitutional rights, (because they give them up to serve in the military), do so of their own free will, in order to serve and protect the United States of America. They enter that contract with the understanding that they will be working to protect and defend this nation. They sign up with the understanding that, although our Commander in Chief may order them to work with the military of other nations or under U.N. auspices, that they will always be under the command of the United States when they're doing so. They enter that contract with the faith that they will be held to the standards of the United States military.
Mr. Barack Hussein Obama, serving as our Commander in Chief, has ceded the command of our military, our United States military, to NATO. He did this without consulting Congress, without consulting the American people, and without consulting the other party to the contract of service in the U.S. military itself, our military personnel. This is a breach of faith. It is a serious breach of faith.
Our military personnel serve under the uniform code of military justice, also known as the UCMJ. Under that code, our military personnel are required to take under consideration the constitutionality of any order they are given. They are required to reject any order that they think would undermine, endanger or oppose the Constitution of the United States of America. That's all of our military personnel, from the highest star-rated general to the lowest deck scrubber and toilet cleaner.
I don't know the military code that governs NATO missions. Do our soldiers? Our military personnel are required, in basic training, to learn and memorize the uniform code of military justice. They are to know the parameters under which they serve and the conditions under which they must refuse to serve. The NATO parameters or the parameters of commanders from different countries who may now be commanding our troops, is a question mark. There should never be a question mark in our soldier's minds as to chain of command, disciplinary procedures or any other requirements for their jobs. For Mr. Obama to have put our soldiers under the command of a foreign entity without so much as a by your leave, is a breach of faith at a basic level.
A Commander in Chief who has served in the military will understand the requirements of a military chain of command in the United States military. Mr. Obama does not have that experience. So, perhaps he can be forgiven for, once again, making a mistake of inexperience. But being forgiven and suffering no consequences for mistakes are two different things. This is a decision that could spill American blood. This is a decision that puts Americans in harm's way, while not serving the vital interests of America. This is a decision that sets an unnerving precedent, if uncontested, for the use of the American military. Even Mr. Clinton's executive order PDD25 did not allow the command of our military to be ceded to a foreign power.
Mr. Obama has claimed to have a law degree, to have been a Constitutional scholar and yet, he seems to have had no problem breaching the contract under which our American military personnel serve. In the contract of service for our military, the offer is clearly to serve in this country's military, to sacrifice ones Constitutional rights, and to gain by that, whatever may be gained by way of pay, experience and training. Once you join the military, you are governed under the UCMJ, not the Constitution of the United States. That is a considerable sacrifice.
It is generally understood, that the military will be under the command of America's Commander in Chief and that it will serve the United States of America. There has never been any implication in that contract that the military of the United States of America would become the United Nations rent a cop, or a branch of NATO. There has never been any implication in that contract that our soldiers would be under the command of any one other than America's Commander in Chief, or that they would serve any purpose that does not serve the interests of America. Historically, American troops have never served under the command of a foreign entity.
There is an implication, however, that the blood, the sweat and the toil of American soldiers will NOT be used to serve the interests of a foreign entity. A president who understands the value of life would honor that implication. Mr. Obama, by his vote while serving as a senator for Illinois, has shown that he does not value life.(This is as concrete an example to demonstrate the value of promoting Christian principles and values in our nation and selecting Christian leaders for our nation as any one could wish.) To put our families and friends, our brothers and sisters, our sons and daughters under the command and disciplinary procedures of a foreign entity without their consent is a breach of faith and contract that is unconscionable.
Many people have spoken about whether or not Mr. Obama's putting our military at risk in Libya when we have no vital interests in Libya is an impeachable offense. Their reasoning is that they thought the president of the United States was required, as the Commander in Chief, to get Congressional approval to deploy the military. They believed that it was in the Constitution somewhere that the president must do so. It is not.
The call for impeachment is nonetheless valid, because Mr. Obama has breached the contract of the United States of America with every single service man and woman who signed up to protect and defend this nation.
To place our military under the command of a foreign entity, to risk spilling American blood for reasons beyond our vital national interests or our protection and defense, is a breach of faith between the office of the presidency and the American people.
For this reason, Mr. Obama does not deserve and should not be allowed to continue to act as the president of the United States of America.
"A man's pride shall bring him low: but honour shall uphold the humble in spirit" ~ Prov 29:23
Tuesday, March 22, 2011
The Flipside of Feminism:What Conservative Women Know - And Men Can't Say is the name of a book just released on March 15th. The authors are Suzanne Venker and Phyllis Schlafly.
This book examines the fallacies of feminism and the damage done to our society because of it. It also presents some solutions for repairing that damage.
I'll be interviewing Mrs. Venker on this week's show. You can join us in the chat room here or call in to listen live from 1:30 - 2:00 CST or comment at (347) 855-8134. (Of course, as always, the show will be available in the archives or for download on the player on the side of the blog.)
"Every wise woman buildeth her house: but the foolish plucketh it down with her hands."~ Prov 14:1
Monday, March 21, 2011
Next was a man with a bullhorn walking around and around the capital building. His comments, at that time were addressed to Governor Walker, asking him to come out and speak to the people. (As I left after my visit, his tone had changed, he was taunting the governor, calling him a coward and saying:"Hey, why don't you hold your breath for 25 minutes?" Must be some of that new civility stuff.)
Then, it was time to find which door was open. (Another change, as during and after the TEA party rallies and pretty much for all of my life, the capital has been open to the people to come and go at will through all the doors during normal hours.) As I entered, it seemed much darker than I remembered it. and then there was the next shock, a metal detector with a table and bins for all pocket contents. Okay, a reasonable precaution given the death threats to our legislators, I went through it, it wasn't a virtual strip search machine after all. The beeper went off. After a thorough search of an otherwise empty, but deep pocket and three more beeping scan results from the wand, I found the errant penny and was allowed to pass into the capital building itself.
The hallway seemed unusually dim as did the rotunda chamber. All the usual lights appeared to be on and it was a sunny day, yet the hallways branching off the rotunda seemed dark and forbidding. Most with velvet ropes across them, not truly blocking, but definitely giving the impression that people weren't welcome to go that way. The capital has always been a rather solemn place for me to visit, but not like this. I don't know if it was some adjustments to the regular lighting, the obvious police presence throughout the building, the attitude of the other people inside the building or what, but it seemed very forbidding and dark, not at all like the capital I was used to. In the center of the rotunda chamber there were people laying out fliers in a circle as though someone on one of the other floors would be photographing them even though I was informed that the upper levels were closed to visitors at this time. As I looked around for the hallway leading to Representative Kestell's office, I saw a man sitting on the floor chatting cheerfully with the woman beside him. At his side was a sign saying he was on a hunger strike until the bill was thrown out or something. It said he was on day 11. He seemed awfully cheerful for someone who had gone without food for 11 days, but I often feel better when I'm fasting, so maybe he does too. In any case, I don't think that's going to work, since I hadn't seen or heard anything about someone on a hunger strike at all. I found Rep. Kestell's office fairly quickly and was greeted by Sara Mikolajczak, one of Rep. Kestell's staffers. I had been running late, so I had the opportunity to chat with this delightful young woman for a few minutes while Rep. Kestell finished up a meeting. She was able to confirm many of the more disturbing things I had heard about or read about the protest. (Things like the smell, the noise, the overall nastiness of the protesters towards anyone on the opposing side.) She showed me the budget and said that they expected it to get just as bad when the time for the vote on that comes around. We talked about the difficulty of removing the signs and tape from the many different, old and rare types of marble used in the capital building. Then I was able to see Rep. Kestell. I asked how he was doing and whether or not he was rethinking his career in public service. He said that he didn't think there was a single legislator on either side of the debate that hadn't been wondering if they really wanted to have this job after watching the behavior of these protesters over the past weeks. In my opinion, that is one of the biggest challenges that has come out of all this. How can we get good people to run for and hold office if the citizens are going to behave like spoiled little brats when they don't get their own way? When former Governor Doyle was in office, and doing some really egregious things, conservatives did not come and tear up the capital. Conservative citizens and legislators did not attempt to hold the entire state hostage. We did the right thing. The people contacted their legislators, expressed their opinions and voted in the next election. Conservative legislators held their noses and voted against horrible bills that they knew would pass anyway because that was their job. That is the way it is supposed to work. No disrupting offices with constant drumming, no pounding on doors and windows and certainly no spitting on those who have been elected to serve us. That is not how a REPUBLIC works. but then, perhaps the protesters can be forgiven, since they clearly believe we live, not in a republic, but in a democracy-poor things. Perhaps they'll learn some manners when they become informed about the difference between the two and why a republic is better. Then we talked about the fiscal issues facing the state. Rep. Kestell expressed great respect for the budget office, saying that the head of it treats having accurate numbers almost as a religion. This man will not fudge the numbers for anyone and he has been trying to get the legislature to cut spending for a number of years now with no luck. Now we are at the tipping point and all the hard decisions have to be made now, because no one was willing to make any of them earlier. He expressed a confidence that both the budget repair bill and the budget, while cutting a number of things that people will not like, are the right thing to do to get WI into a place from which we can start addressing some of the more serious and larger issues that face us. State Sovereignty education and health care came up as a few of those areas.
He then urged me to share the facts with people. Because we cannot continue to spend like we have been and no amount of protesting will make money fall from the sky. Nor will any amount of protesting about fiscal realities relieve us of the burdens placed on our economy by the hoops we are jumping through to get money from Washington.
The bottom line is that many of the demands placed on us, as a state, by Washington are costly and ineffective. In other words, my grandmother was right when she used to say that government money always costs you more than you get. The feds give us money(our own money) for our schools and other things - as long as we jump through their hoops and don't squawk about how much of the money that we could have had for our schools is going, instead, to the layers and layers of bureaucrats who spend their time thinking up ways to prevent us from getting more of our own money to put towards our schools. (And this, when the federal government has no Constitutional authority to have anything to do with the education of our children. That is supposed to be left to the state and local levels.)
After thanking Rep. Kestell and his staffers, I went to see Sen. Leibham, but he wasn't in. So I left a note on the sign in sheet and thanked his staffers for their service. Then I went to visit Sen. Grothman. Now Sen. Grothman is not from my district, but I felt so bad upon viewing the video of him being mobbed that I felt I must visit him and thank him for his service, particularly. Sen Grothman has been a staunch supporter of conservative values, fiscal responsibility and Constitutional government for many years and he deserved better from the citizens of WI than to be mobbed like that. Public sector union members aren't all thugs(Although, I now think a goodly number more than I would have ever credited before this protest began are very badly behaved indeed.)and the taxpayers are not robber barons out to enslave the "poor little union workers. (Who are apparently unable to stand up to their employers without unions-although they can take days off from work and engage in medical fraud and other less savory activities to defend their wish to have someone else to do it for them.How does that work?) I think it's time for us to remember that we are all in this together. "We must hang together or we will assuredly hang separately" if we cannot get our state back onto solid fiscal ground. If we can do this, then we can assert ourselves as a state and really make the changes that need to be made to make our state what it needs to be as our federal government runs amok and courts hyperinflation and ruin. Let's get our own house in order and then go after Washington. Because it's not about who's in the oval office or the legislature so much as it is about sustaining our nation. The time for hard decisions is now. Let's make them and move forward. That is our state motto as embodied by the statue of Lady Forward on the top of our capital building is it not?
"And the LORD said unto Moses, Wherefore criest thou unto me? speak unto the children of Israel, that they go forward: But lift thou up thy rod, and stretch out thine hand over the sea, and divide it: and the children of Israel shall go on dry ground through the midst of the sea."~ Exodus 14:15-16
Friday, March 18, 2011
The point of this post is not to address the legal nonsense that will surely go on for far too long and cost WI taxpayers yet more money, but rather to share the reasoning of one of the Senators who voted to pass this bill for those who still don't understand that WI is broke and that means there must be cuts somewhere. I am sharing Sen. Leibham's "Capital Connection" column. Rep. Kestell called into my radio show and the link to listen that or download it is on the player on the side of the page.
By State Senator Joe Leibham
February 24, 2011
~ Information on Senate Bill 11 ~
Governor Scott Walker has unveiled a proposal that seeks to provide local government elected officials (city council members, school board members, etc.) with the authority to make decisions regarding most issues related to the people they employ. In addition, the plan would specifically require most government employees, including myself, to pay a greater portion of health care premium costs and half of the annual contribution to pension/retirement plans. Governor Walker believes these changes are necessary so that state and local elected officials will have all the tools needed to best manage upcoming budgets that will receive less state aid due to our ongoing budget crisis and economic slow down.
Without a doubt, the Governor’s proposal (officially known as Special Session Senate Bill 11) has created an historic level of interest and concern. It has been an amazing week as tens of thousands of citizens from our state (and now on a daily basis – more and more people from across the nation) have decided to participate in the law making process by sharing input with their government, protesting or demonstrating in public rallies. While things have gotten a little intense at times, overall this has been a positive experience.
The amount of input provided to me and questions asked has also been amazing. Thousands of district residents have called, e-mailed, or visited with me personally to discuss the bill, ask questions, and share their thoughts both in support and opposition. While I have tried my hardest to return calls, meet with people personally, and respond to e-mails, the sheer volume has been a challenge to manage. I appreciate everyone’s patience as I work to read and respond while managing all of my legislative responsibilities.
Many of the contacts have included questions about the bill. In an effort to provide answers, below I have attempted to summarize the major questions raised and provide factual information regarding specific provisions in the bill:
Will existing public employee contracts be impacted by the provisions in this bill? Existing employee contracts cannot and will not be impacted by the bill. The provisions included in the bill will only go into effect after an existing contract comes to an end.
What is required in the bill regarding contributions to state pension plans? State, school district, and municipal employees that are members of the Wisconsin Retirement System (WRS) would be required to contribute 50% of their annual pension payment. The payment amount for WRS employees is estimated to be 5.8% of salary in 2011.
What is required in the bill regarding contributions for health insurance? State employees would be required to pay at least 12.6 percent of the average cost of annual health insurance premiums. Local employers participating in the Public Employers Group Health Insurance Plan would be prohibited from paying more than 88% of the lowest cost plan. Local government employers who use other health insurance plans or are self-insured would be able to set the contribution rate and the subject would be prohibited from the process of collective bargaining.
Will legislators and the Governor be required to participate in these changes to health care and pension contributions? All elected officials including legislators and the Governor will be required as of April 1, 2011 to make these contributions for health care and pensions. For elected officials the pension contribution is estimated to be 6.65% of salary in 2011.
Will public employees still be allowed to form unions? Public employees will still be allowed to form unions. An annual vote will be required to maintain certification as a union, and dues would be collected by the unions, not by the employer.
What will happen to the process of collective bargaining? The process of collective bargaining would continue for the establishment of the base wage for represented public employees.
Will there be caps on base pay? Base wage increases could not exceed increases in the consumer price index (CPI) unless approved by a referendum.
What will happen to items like overtime, premium pay, merit pay performance pay, pay schedules and automatic pay progressions? These items will be determined by the local employer (school board, local municipality, county board, etc.).
What will happen to various workplace rules that are currently bargained for collectively? At the local level these items will be managed and approved by the local employer. For state employees, work place rules would be developed by Office of State Employment Relations and approved by the legislature’s Joint Committee on Employment Relations.
What workplace protections will remain for public employees after passage of the bill? Wisconsin’s Civil Service System (WCSS) will not be changed by the bill. WCSS is a system for hiring, retaining, and promoting employees based on an objective assessment of their qualifications and ability to do their work. The system that has been in place since 1905 is grounded on two cornerstones: hiring decisions are merit based, and removal from service must be based on just cause. An employee cannot be discharged, suspended, or demoted except for just cause. The system includes two processes under which a public employee can pursue a grievance against their employer. The first is through the Wisconsin Employment Relations Commission and is found in Wisconsin Stats s. 230.44. You can view this statute by visiting: http://nxt.legis.state.wi.us/nxt/gateway.dll?f=templates&fn=default.htm&d=stats&jd=230.44
Matters which affect an employee’s condition of employment are covered by a grievance procedure found in chapter ER 46 of the Wisconsin Administrative Code: http://nxt.legis.state.wi.us/nxt/gateway.dll?f=templates&fn=default.htm&vid=WI:Default&d=code&jd=ch.%20er%2046
In addition, the bill now requires, per an amendment I sponsored, that a local government employer either adopt the WCSS or establish a grievance system that covers at least all of the following: (a) a grievance procedure that addresses employee terminations; (b) employee discipline; and (c) workplace safety.
If a local governmental unit creates a grievance procedure under these provisions, the procedure must contain at least all of the following elements: (a) a written document specifying the process that a grievant and an employer must follow; (b) a hearing before an impartial hearing officer; and (c) an appeal process in which the highest level of appeal is the governing body of the local governmental unit.
Are law enforcement officers exempt from the provisions of the bill? Fire fighters, law enforcement officers, and members of the State Patrol are exempted from the provisions in the bill.
How many votes will be required to vote this bill out of the Senate? The state constitution requires twenty (3/5’s of the total members) senators present for the vote to take place, but only 17 votes (a simply majority of the total members) for the bill to pass.
As the legislative process and deliberation continues on this bill, I am hopeful this factual information will be helpful.
It is an honor representing the residents of the 9th District in the State Senate!
"And the Lord said, Who then is that faithful and wise steward, whom his lord shall make ruler over his household, to give them their portion of meat in due season?
"~ Luke 12:32
Monday, March 14, 2011
Sunday, March 13, 2011
One of my family members, who opposes Gov. Walker, asked me a question today on facebook. The question was a relatively straightforward one of " How will the republican agenda help our families?". The thing is, that the assumption behind the question is the real heart of the matter in the battle for America.(Beyond the assumption that I am a republican, that is. I am not a republican, I am a conservative.)
The assumption behind the question is that the government exists to help us. To say that the government is here to help us is like telling a small child that a police officer is there to help them and never refining that statement as they got older.
While the statement is broadly true, in that government exists to create and maintain a stable society, which is indubitably helpful to individuals as well as families, it is not true in a specific sense. The government is not here to take care of you. (Just as a police officer's job is to enforce the law, not "to help you". They don't help robbers and murderers to steal and kill do they?)
We are not supposed to be looking to the government to "help us". We are supposed to be taking care of ourselves. To be depending upon the principles of self reliance and personal responsibility. That is why our founders put specific limits on the power and authority of government. To rely upon the government for the basic necessities of life is degrading to the character of the nation as a whole.
What business does government have telling us what toilets or light bulbs to use? What business does the government have using the tax code to manipulate the populace? What business does the government have making life and death decisions over my and my family's health care? What business does the government have in declaring what foods we may or may not eat?
We are not to go running and crying to the government, willing to sacrifice our freedom for security, every time we face a challenge. We are to use our own personal responsibility and self control to live our lives as we see fit within the natural limits of our self evident, God given and Constitutionally affirmed rights. This is the true spirit of America. Let us grasp it fully, restore the Constitutional limits upon our governments, national, state and local, restore fiscal sanity to the nation and move on with our lives.
Let us set the example of a self reliant, free people for the rest of the world. Let us be the ones to show the world that this is how freedom is done. Let us accept the risks and embrace the personal responsibility necessary to be a free people. And, while we're at it, may we never forget the Creator who made this possible.
Here are a few choice quotes from our founders for you to consider.
"No country upon earth ever had it more in its power to attain these blessings than United America. Wondrously strange, then, and much to be regretted indeed would it be, were we to neglect the means and to depart from the road which Providence has pointed us to so plainly." ~George Washington
"...reason and experience both forbid us to expect that National morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle." ~George Washington
"Single acts of tyranny may be ascribed to the accidental opinion of a day. But a series of oppressions, begun at a distinguished period, and pursued unalterably through every change of ministers, too plainly proves a deliberate systematic plan of reducing us to slavery." ~ Thomas Jefferson
"We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. Avarice, ambition, revenge, or gallantry, would break the strongest cords of our Constitution as a whale goes through a net. Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other." ~John Adams
"The two enemies of the people are criminals and government,so let us tie the second down with the chains of the constitution so the second will not become the legalized version of the first."Thomas Jefferson
"And I will walk at liberty: for I seek thy precepts. "~ Psalm 119:45
Friday, March 11, 2011
Be thankful for what you have, and for what you do not. Be thankful for those who survived and for the time we were allowed to have with those who were lost. Be thankful for what remains untouched and for the opportunity to improve upon that which was destroyed.
The last few days have seen some remarkable events unfolding. Revolutions, protests, mobs and now earthquakes. Let's take this day to count our blessings and review our priorities before we move on.
Just as a quick update on WI; the assembly passed the budget repair bill on Thursday and Governor Walker signed it into law this morning. Yes, there was more bad behavior on the part of those who would prefer mob rule to the rule of law, but they pale in significance to the earthquakes in the Ring of Fire.
"In my distress I called upon the LORD, and cried unto my God: he heard my voice out of his temple, and my cry came before him, even into his ears.
Then the earth shook and trembled; the foundations also of the hills moved and were shaken, because he was wroth." ~ Psalm 18:6-7
Thursday, March 10, 2011
Because it is a different bill than the one the assembly approved after 60+ hours of debate, it will go to the assembly later today. It is not substantially different, so there shouldn't need to be much debate on it.
The session was held quickly and in a highly irregular manner. Many are saying that it was not a legal vote, because the session and vote was not posted for a certain number of hours in advance of the session.This is what we will be hearing about until we are sick of it in days to come. The legislature says it met under the rules described in "Special and Extraordinary Sessions of the Wisconsin Legislature" .
I suspect, but not being a lawyer myself, could not say definitively, that the section under "The Call" gives them the authority to have called this vote the way they did and to have held the vote the way they did. The following is what I believe to be the pertinent section:
"In an opinion to Governor Emanuel
L. Philipp in 1918, Attorney General Spencer Haven indicated that the executive’s options in
calling a special session were quite broad:
It will be noted that this provision of the constitution leaves the matter wholly within your hands. You are hampered by no machinery, and no limitations. The time of issuing the proclamation, the time when the session shall convene, the subjects to be considered thereat, the length of notice to be given to the members, the method of notifying them, all are left entirely to your discretion. (7 OAG 49)
Attorney General Stewart G. Honeck’s opinion in 1948 (37 OAG 374) stated that the call may be issued in person or by mail, telephone or telegraph. He also added that failure to contact individual members who are out of the state or unavailable does not invalidate the special session. "(emphasis mine)
It looks to me as though they were under none of the limitations ordinarily governing the time of the session or the amount of public notice given before this meeting.
There are an awful lot of people out there making an awful lot of ridiculous statements about this. I saw a teachers union member on the news claiming that this was done because the republicans are out to "get our children". (Those were the actual words-can you believe that?) That, "teachers and the unions are the only ones standing up for our children's rights". If that were true, then why do teachers and administrators habitually deny our children their Constitutional rights during school hours, to say nothing of refusing to notify parents when their children need help to exercise those rights? If that were true, then why would the unions obstruct charter schools that are running more efficiently(i.e. more cheaply) and with better results(i.e. better grades) to keep them from succeeding? For that matter, if it were truly about the children, then why not endorse and restructure the educational system around homeschooling? I'll tell you why. Because it is not about the children, it is about power.
My speculation is that these people are so deluded that they cannot discern a lie even when it is told by themselves. But then what do you expect of those who embrace the Madison state of mind? Madison, a place where some of the people out here in the hinterlands say is the place that logic goes to die.
This is the right thing for our state and for the rest of the nation(Since they insist upon poking their noses into our business, I may as well include them.) The unions need to be restored to their reasonable role -that of ensuring reasonable wages along with healthy and safe working conditions - and leave politics to We the People.
"The way of peace they know not; and there is no judgment in their goings: they have made them crooked paths: whosoever goeth therein shall not know peace." ~Isaiah 59:8
"And when Paul had gathered a bundle of sticks, and laid them on the fire, there came a viper out of the heat, and fastened on his hand." ~Acts 29:3
Wednesday, March 9, 2011
That's what those 14 AWOL WI Senators are doing. They are engaging in Legislative Terrorism. Think that's too harsh? I do not. There were plenty of votes under Governor Doyle that were hard for conservatives to swallow, but they voted.
They did not run off and hold the entire state hostage to their whims. If you listen to today's radio show(see the player on the sidebar), you will hear Rep. Steve Kestell setting a standard of graciousness that is seldom seen in today's world. Even in WI. He is still willing to credit those missing legislators with the character to come back on their own. This, after he has spent weeks surrounded by protesters using obscenity and spitting on him because of the actions of these Senators.
They should be ashamed to share a building with this man. For that matter, the governor himself has been gracious in his descriptions of public employees. Taking the time to make note of all the state employees who have been showing up to do their jobs.
I'm hearing about compromise coming. That is unacceptable. It may be that our legislators are fearful for themselves and their families. Given the behavior they have seen demonstrated at the capital over the past weeks, that is a legitimate concern. If that is the case, I would urge our legitimate legislators to let us know. Let the people of WI be held to a higher standard.
There was a story about a German officer asking a young boy where the bodyguard of the Danish king was as he took his daily promenade. The boy was said to have replied that the king's bodyguard was every man, woman and child in Denmark.
If the mainstream media has any decency at all, they need to urge a display of graciousness on the part of all WI citizens towards our legislators. Voluntarily restrict your communication with your legislators to their office hours and do not go to their homes. Call their offices, e-mail their official e-mails and send letters to their offices, but leave them alone at home.
Further, if you are a friend or neighbor of a legislator, keep a sharp eye out for them, their families and their property.
When I heard that people had been spitting on MY Rep., I was shocked and appalled. I want to believe that only out of state hooligans would have done such a thing, but I realize that I'm probably wrong. And even if I am correct, what is wrong in the nation that this would be an acceptable method of communicating with a legislator anywhere? If you don't agree with a legislator, you do NOT spit on them, that's what elections are for.
We are better than this Wisconsin, we have to be. And if we are not, it's time to bring our game up until we are.
Not one penny for tribute, and that's all a compromise would be, tribute to an unconscionable and despicable act on the part of these 14 Senators and all the union hooligans that protested in such a disrespectful manner over these past weeks.
"That which is altogether just shalt thou follow, that thou mayest live, and inherit the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee." ~Deut 16:20
Tuesday, March 8, 2011
I said that because, as former governor Lee Dreyfus once said, Madison is "68 square miles surrounded by reality." So, the opinions of the people in Madison, or even Milwaukee, are not necessarily reflective of the opinions of the people in the rest of the state. (No, as a matter of fact, the rest of us do NOT want to pay for your train-you want it-you pony up the money yourself.)
I know that there are polls showing increasing disapproval of Gov. Walker and I thought those polls were in need of some balance. I saw a billboard that pretty well sums up the attitude of many up here in Kestell country. (I wouldn't presume to say everyone-because the teachers union members and their compatriots up here clearly-if you read my other posts- oppose him.)
So in the interest of balance, here is the billboard. Enjoy.
At least that's the post I was working on when I heard the Governor Walker had decided to compromise. So, who is representing the taxpayers in those contracts now? Congratulations, you've just taught the communists that they don't have to play by the rules.
I am disgusted. Texas, Oklahoma and Utah are beginning to look good. ( I would pick Alaska, myself, but my husband thinks it's too cold here.)
I feel betrayed. But maybe I'm jumping the gun here. I'll be calling my legislators and the governor's office tomorrow. I hope this is just a reporter, hoping for a scoop, behaving badly with privileged information.
Update: This morning,(3/9/2011) I called the governor's office to ask about reports of compromise on the part of Governor Walker. Tristan(an aide I assume) informed me, that, as far as he knows, the governor has no intention of compromising. I expressed my approval and asked that he relay my message of absolutely no compromise to Governor Walker. If we allow this sort of shenanigan to prevail, then we have no business calling ourselves a republic. Giving in to "pay for play" democrats who refuse to do their jobs and union thugs from across the country would be anathema to the vision of our founders and the continued existence of our status as a sovereign state.
If I went to work one day and found that my employer wanted me to do the most disagreeable job at the business, would I be justified in throwing a hissy fit, walking off the job-while still insisting that I be paid- and having my union send in people to vandalize the business and harass the other employees who are trying to do their jobs? Of course not. I should be fired for such behavior. And the union should be disbanded or heavily penalized. And yet, that is exactly what these 14 Senators have done. Add in that they have accepted rather a lot of union money to get elected and the true picture becomes even clearer. I say Illinois can have them. They should resign if they are not willing to represent their constituents above their campaign donors.
"When they have a matter, they come unto me; and I judge between one and another, and I do make them know the statutes of God, and his laws.
"And Moses' father in law said unto him, The thing that thou doest is not good.
Thou wilt surely wear away, both thou, and this people that is with thee: for this thing is too heavy for thee; thou art not able to perform it thyself alone.
Hearken now unto my voice, I will give thee counsel, and God shall be with thee: Be thou for the people to God-ward, that thou mayest bring the causes unto God:
And thou shalt teach them ordinances and laws, and shalt shew them the way wherein they must walk, and the work that they must do.
Moreover thou shalt provide out of all the people able men, such as fear God, men of truth, hating covetousness; and place such over them, to be rulers of thousands, and rulers of hundreds, rulers of fifties, and rulers of tens: "~ Exodus 18:16-21
See the rest of this excellent post at The Maritime Sentry.
"And the afflicted people thou wilt save: but thine eyes are upon the haughty, that thou mayest bring them down."~ 2 Sam 22:28
Friday, March 4, 2011
With that freedom comes the responsibility to behave in a way that respects those memorials, the work of the craftsmen/women and the investment of the taxpayers of Wisconsin in this building. The capital building is the public face of the government of the state of Wisconsin. Just as we would treat the homes of people we visit with respect, so we are obligated to treat the people's house with respect.
If I were to visit a friend, it would not be appropriate to tape signs on the walls of that friend's house or to cause any sort of damage. If I were to cause damage accidentally, I would have an obligation to pay for it. (Or at the very least to offer to pay for any damages.)That is a minimal requirement of civilized behavior.
Now we have an estimate of the damages done by the protesters during this 3 week long and holding protest. And the damages are.....Approximately 7.5 million dollars from those "peaceful" and "clean" protesters.
According to several news reports, while some signs were put up with painter's tape to minimize any impact, many were not. The damage that tape is causing/has caused to the marble inside the capital building is going to cost around 6 million dollars to repair. The other 1.5 million? That would be for restoring the capital grounds outside the building.
I call on those who taped signs anywhere in the capital to come forward and offer to pay for these damages. If you were sent there by an organization of any sort, kindly provide the state's attorney general with the name and contact information for that group and the approximate number of signs put up by your group so that we may send a bill for your/your group's portion of this expense.
Speech is free. Vandalism, even unintentional vandalism, is not.
So, perhaps while union leaders are colluding with their favorite democratic legislators to circumvent the budget repair bill by quickly re-negotiating contracts before those AWOL senators return, they should take some time to behave in a civilized manner and offer to pay for the damages their people have caused.
Because, just in case you haven't heard, the taxpayers of Wisconsin are still broke.
"And said to the judges, Take heed what ye do: for ye judge not for man, but for the LORD, who is with you in the judgment.
Wherefore now let the fear of the LORD be upon you; take heed and do it: for there is no iniquity with the LORD our God, nor respect of persons, nor taking of gifts." ~ 2Chron 19:6-7
Wednesday, March 2, 2011
Notice a few things here.
1.) The crowd was rabid until a Democratic Rep., Brett Hulsey, stepped between them and Sen. Grothman. What would have happened if he had not been there?
2.) This crowd can chant "peaceful" as many times as they like-it doesn't change their behavior.
3.) One man shouts out "I want my democracy back". One more time. We don't have a democracy, we have never had a democracy, we have a REPUBLIC.
4.)Mr. Obama asked that we not "vilify" public employees. The only people vilifying these workers are themselves-by their outrageous behavior.
My prayers for Senator Grothman and the other legislators who have had to endure this kind of treatment over the past days. Stand strong. You are doing the right thing.
"Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day I have been in the deep;"~ 2Cor 11:25
The facts are these:
After 3-4 days of trying to get their normal work done, despite constant noise and being yelled and screamed at every time they had to walk the halls of the capital building, and after having been dismissed out of fear for their safety, the Assembly held 61+ hours of debate on the budget repair bill. Think about that. That's nearly 3 days, probably without more than a few minutes of sleep here and there. Then they voted.
After the vote, pandemonium erupted in the Assembly chamber, because the union supporters didn't get the vote they wanted and the Assembly republicans marched out quickly to finger pointing and shouts of "shame!, shame!" from their democrat colleagues.
But before they marched out, one democrat Assemblyman, Rep. Gordon Hintz, D-Oshkosh, was unable to contain himself and shouted out a threat which appeared to be directed at assemblywoman Michelle Litjens, R-Winneconne, but which she has graciously acknowledged as having been directed towards the group at large rather than as a personal sentiment towards herself.
Now, if you want to know what the threat was, you may click on the links contained in this post as I am disinclined to repeat it here. If you want to see the video, I must apologize for lacking such a link, but, to the best of my knowledge, that video was removed shortly after Mr. Jerry Bader and Mr. Glen Beck picked up on this story.
As though it were not bad enough that our lovely capital building and grounds have been invaded by hooligans intent upon providing such conditions that our legislators were distracted from their duties.
As if it were not enough that our public sector employees are acting as though the taxpayers of Wisconsin are greedy robber barons who are attempting to condemn them to serfdom, when in fact we have given them wages and benefits that are more than most of the rest of us get in our employment.
As if it were not bad enough that Mr. Obama, who should be the first person in this nation to applaud fiscal restraint(Although why I should think he would, given his own reckless spending and policies is a mere nod to courtesy out of respect to the office.)has made more than one statement to kowtow to unions rather than supporting our governor in our time of fiscal reckoning.
As if it were not bad enough that our state has become some sort of leftist battleground where fiscal reality has spewed it's two cents worth into the debate between reality and ideology.
As if it were not bad enough that families and friendships are being strained to the breaking point over this clash between reality and ideology.
As if it weren't bad enough that the media, which was so quick to portray the peaceful and generally cheerful TEA party protesters as violent thugs, now ignores signs with obscenities and far more vile things than I ever saw at any of the TEA parties I have attended. That they ignore the arrests of protesters, assaults and vandalism, by protesters, to our beautiful capital building as well as the use, by protesters, of a veterans memorial as a signboard.
As if it weren't bad enough that our teachers and doctors have behaved in a despicably unethical manner that has been displayed before the entire nation.("our teachers brought us here today"; "We are sick, we're sick of Walker" and let's not forget "These people are stressed, and I recommend that they spend today with like minded people" Or whatever that "doctor's" nonsense was.)
As if it weren't bad enough that our children have been revealed to have had a substandard education despite our high levels of educational funding. ("um, we're trying to stop whatever this dude is doing")
But now, we have to see that the stress of being a legislator in this situation has caused one of them to utter obscenities and threats to his colleagues.
While I absolutely applaud Rep. Litjens gracious treatment of her colleague, I am appalled that it was necessary. Such behavior in the halls of the legislature is unacceptable. I hope that the people of his district take appropriate action to make sure that he will not so shame himself or them again. And while I'm at it, I pray that the Lord will direct our legislators and people to heal some of this damage.
It is time for the out of state agitators to go home now, and let us heal our state.
"And the LORD passed by before him, and proclaimed, The LORD, The LORD God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth," ~ Exodus 34:6
At this point in the game, I think it is imperative to disseminate every little bit of primary source information that is available as the media is clearly(See my next post) not covering anything that they think would hurt the union side of the discussion. Reality trumps ideology every time.
I have highlighted with red a few of the more important items to note.
And here is the report:
"Budget Repair Bill Passes Assembly
After two weeks, 17 hours of public testimony and over 61 straight hours of debate on the floor of the Assembly the Budget Repair Bill passed early Friday morning on a 51 – 17 vote.
Now the Repair Bill is in the State Senate waiting for 14 AWOL Democratic Senators to return from Illinois to debate and vote.
Wisconsin is facing a $150 million deficit in the current budget ending June 30th. This bill would have covered that shortfall and established a foundation for the next two year budget that faces a $3.6 billion deficit.
The last two weeks have been very frustrating with Democrat stall tactics in both houses, a lot of misinformation and a lot of intimidation. The Budget Repair Bill:
Does not eliminate pension plans or health insurance
Does not reduce pay
Does not continue mandatory furlough days
Does not eliminate vacation or sick leave days
Does not eliminate public or private sector unions
Does not totally eliminate collective bargaining
The bill does contain reasonable measures to control spending at the state level and for local governments and school districts. Wisconsin is broke. There will be cuts in shared revenue to local governments and schools in Governor Walker’s budget. The budget repair bill gives local governments the flexibility to control their budgets. This is what they have wanted for years and years.
What if this bill does not pass the Senate? The only other option is layoffs. We will find out this week what Governor Walker plans on doing if he has to go forward without the changes the Budget Repair Bill would give him. I believe it will be approximately 1,500 public sector layoffs. That is something none of us wants to see.
Last November, the voters told us they wanted things to change in Madison. No more out of control spending and no more smoke and mirrors to balance budgets. They asked for fiscal responsibility. No more passing the tough decisions to the next budget or the next generation.
This budget repair bill sets the groundwork for future budgets two, four, six years down the road. It gives local governments the ability to balance their budgets, and control their workplace. The people you elect to these boards and councils will be able to make the decisions you elected them to make.
Last Two Weeks
A few thoughts on the last two weeks in Madison.
First, it was very frustrating to see how a bunch of protesters took over the capitol building. The mess and the smell after nearly two weeks were hard to watch. Hopefully the capitol will return to normal this week and the mess will be cleaned up and any damage repaired.
Second, the noise was nonstop. It was hard to get any work done in offices, in caucus or in the Assembly chamber. When you walked the halls with a suit on you were yelled at, sometimes screamed at. Police were everywhere. They did a wonderful job keeping peace and a semblance of order.
Third, this issue is becoming a contest between public sector unions and taxpayers. Taxpayers want to have a voice in how their government is run through their local and state elected officials. Right now they don’t feel they have that voice.
I have been on record supporting this legislation since it was introduced three weeks ago. I voted for this bill in Joint Finance making it possible that both houses of the legislature could vote on this important piece of legislation. This is exactly the bill we voted on last Friday in the Assembly.
When we took the vote at 1:00 am after over 60 hours of debate pandemonium broke loose. There was a quick electronic vote taken. When the rolls were closed my vote did not register and it shows me as “not voting”. Normally that would be corrected before the rolls were closed but with the chaos (screaming and yelling) in the chamber and the quick exit that did not happen. I found out an hour after we adjourned that I was recorded as “not voting.” You can see by videos taken of the Assembly floor I was at my desk pushing my button. The next time the Assembly is in session, I will have my vote corrected to say that in the official Assembly record that I want my vote to say Yes, that I supported the budget repair bill and I stand with Governor Walker.
I am on record voting for the bill in Joint Finance and I will continue to support fiscally responsible legislation that brings stability to state and local governments in Wisconsin. We do not want to face the massive layoffs and cuts in service that are happening right now in Michigan, California and many other states in this country.
We can do better in Wisconsin but that means making tough decisions now. We can’t continue to pass our problems on to the next budget and the next generation.
Governor Walker’s Budget Bill
Governor Walker plans on delivering his Budget speech to the legislature this Tuesday. Remember what we have been dealing with is a Budget Repair Bill that just gets us to July 1st. The next biennial budget starts on July 1st and runs through June 30, 2013. Governor Walker will present that budget that deals with a $3.6 billion shortfall. That budget will shine a light on just how bad the state’s finances have been for years and getting worse because no tough decision were made.
Stay tuned to what is happening in Madison. The financial viability of Wisconsin is at stake. We can’t continue to take a pass on the problems we face. Every year we wait the decisions get harder and more painful. Regardless of the opposition we need to take a stand right now."
"Send one of you, and let him fetch your brother, and ye shall be kept in prison, that your words may be proved, whether there be any truth in you: or else by the life of Pharaoh surely ye are spies." ~ Gen 42:16
Tuesday, March 1, 2011
"I do agree that MHz Network Worldview is educational TV because the very first day that I watched it I learned that: (1) The U.S. spends too much money on intelligence gathering; (2) The U.S. is a fascist country; and (3) Harry Truman was a war criminal. Gosh, I didn’t know that!
These are examples of the propaganda being disseminated through the foreign networks carried by MHz.
One would think that the oil-rich Emir of Qatar, who bankrolled Al Jazeera, would already have enough of our petrodollars in his pockets to buy his own doggone airtime just like Rupert Murdoch did when he started Fox News Channel. If the Emir can’t find a commercial station stupid enough to air his twisted version of the world, he could always lease access on cable, just like the other infomercial kings do. That would satisfy any First Amendment concerns without forcing our great grandchildren to borrow even more money to buy airtime for him."
Please do read the rest of this post over at Holger Awakens and take the time to learn the legend of Holger Danske as well.
"For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist." ~ 2 John 1:7