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Blue Jean Nation "Yearning to breathe free" PDF Print E-mail
Commentary
Written by Mike McCabe, Blue Jean Nation   
Thursday, 28 July 2016 12:59

lady-liberty-holding-noseThe major parties are offering voters the two most unpopular nominees in memory. In a little more than three months, voters who are sick and tired of being forced to choose the lesser of evils will be sicker still. Has the time come for the death of one or both of the old major parties and the birth of a new one?


ALTOONA, WI - With pessimism and paranoia and fear of outsiders washing over the countryside, and without a shared sense of national purpose or vision for the future, America will have a presidential election in a little over three months. Here’s a prediction: Nose-holding and lesser-evilism will reach epidemic proportions in 2016.

One party is scary and the other is scared. Scary is coming into sharper focus with each passing day. Scared takes the form of excessive caution and unwillingness to serve up anything more than a main course of status quo with a side dish of incremental change.

hillary-clintonThe parties have chosen who they want at the top of the ballot, and are offering voters the two most unpopular major party nominees in memory. That’s not to say Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are without admirers. Each has some passionate supporters. Clinton got roughly 15 million votes on her way to securing the Democratic nomination, and Trump got about 13 million votes to win the Republican nomination. But one of them is going to have to convince about 50 million more voters to trust them with the keys to the White House.

donald-trumpThe biggest single bloc of these voters who will decide the election fall into either the Never Trump or Never Hillary camps. If the Democrats had not chosen a candidate with so much baggage and who is so intensely despised by the other side, it would be next to impossible to imagine where Trump could find 50 million more votes. If the Republicans had not chosen someone whose appeal to anyone other than angry white men is so obviously limited, it would be hard to see how Hillary could possibly win over another 50 million voters.

Some will hold their noses and vote for Hillary, not because they like her or want her as president but rather because they desperately want to prevent a Trump presidency and see her as the lesser evil. Some will hold their noses and vote for Trump, not because they think he’s fit to be president but rather because they can’t stand Hillary and will do anything to stop her. For them, Trump is the lesser evil. More than usual will vote for one of the minor-party candidates. Tens of millions of others won’t vote at all. The winner will get elected with less than 50% of the vote. Even the party that wins the White House will paradoxically see its standing with the public harmed in the process.

In a little more than three months, it will be over. But voters who are sick and tired of being forced to hold their noses and choose the lesser of evils will be sicker and even more tired. Then it will be time for those yearning to breathe free to get imaginative. Then the time will come to contemplate the death of one or both of the old major parties and the birth of a new one.

— Mike McCabe

***

Read more of Blue Jean Nation at http://www.bluejeannation.com/

Last Updated on Thursday, 28 July 2016 14:09
 
Our County Fair is a Celebration of How We All Work Together PDF Print E-mail
Commentary
Written by Kathleen Vinehout, State Senator 31st District   
Monday, 25 July 2016 14:47

county-fairCounty fairs bring people from all walks of life together as participants, volunteers and those who enjoy the festivities. At a time when much seems to divide us, the fair brings us back together in celebration and fun.

Last Updated on Monday, 25 July 2016 15:15
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Walker’s WEDC Caught Red-Handed PDF Print E-mail
Commentary
Written by Citizen Action of Wisconsin, Robert Kraig   
Monday, 25 July 2016 08:42

out_sourced_wedcCitizen Action sounded the alarm two years ago on how Walker’s scandal plagued WEDC doles out public money. Walker promised to require corporations taking our job creation dollars to give 30 days notice of any planned outsourcing or downsizing. Now we find they're not even doing that!


MILWAUKEE - When Citizen Action sounded the alarm two years ago that Walker’s scandal plagued Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) doles out public money to corporations engaged in outsourcing jobs, they came up with a non-solution.

Walker’s WEDC promised to require corporations taking our job creation dollars to give 30 days notice of any planned outsourcing or downsizing.

Now, Citizen Action has discovered that Walker is not even doing that! When we filed an open records request WEDC lawyers found ZERO outsourcing notifications--this despite a series of corporations caught red-handed in recent months outsourcing jobs when taking money from WEDC.

Outsourcing can be the issue that turns the 2016 election in our favor, and even forces Scott Walker not to seek re-election, but only if we have the resources to tell voters about it.

If you agree, please make an emergency contribution to Citizen Action’s outsourcing election fund.

Outsourcing is the sleeping giant in the 2016 election because it is the smoking gun of the rigged economy.

The outright support for large corporations outsourcing Wisconsin jobs is political dynamite. The reason Walker’s jobs agency turns a blind eye to outsourcing is that they support it!

Citizen Action played a leading role in forcing votes on bills to cut off public loans, grants, and tax credits to corporations engaged in outsourcing. Shockingly, every Republican legislator voted wrong on the issue!

Wisconsin voters should be outraged about their senators and representatives supporting the outsourcing of their jobs, but only if we have the resources to communicate with them about it during the election.

If you agree, please send an emergency contribution to Citizen Action’s outsourcing election fund.

Sincerely,

Robert Kraig

Last Updated on Monday, 25 July 2016 09:08
 
Blue Jean Nation "Shred the playbook" PDF Print E-mail
Commentary
Written by Mike McCabe, Blue Jean Nation   
Sunday, 24 July 2016 16:37

playbook-bjnWhy do politicians keep behaving the way they do when it’s clear it only makes many dislike them? They stick with what they know, the handbook provided by consultants, handlers and party bosses.


ALTOONA, WI - Most people hate politics and don’t hide how little they think of your average politician. Makes you wonder why politicians keep behaving the way they do when it’s clear it only makes people dislike them more. Maybe it’s because they don’t know any other way to behave. They’ve been operating out of a well-worn playbook for so long that they know all the plays by heart. So they stick with what they know.

Most of the plays in the playbook have at least three things in common. They are decades old or older. They are expensive. And they work like a charm, if the goals are to alienate the general public and cripple democracy.

The first page in both parties’ playbook is nonstop fundraising. It’s the favorite play because it makes so many other plays possible. It’s why politicians see you and me as nothing more than ATMs.

The playbook then says spend heavily on paid media. Television, radio, direct mail advertising, online ads. This is political gospel. The conventional wisdom is looking less and less wise, however, when you consider that public trust in advertising has been falling. This trend is sure to continue in the future because young Millennials are especially distrustful of advertising.

Last Updated on Sunday, 24 July 2016 17:05
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