249 results for author: Phil Anderson


Crime and Too Little Punishment

“Some men rob you with a six-gun – others rob you with a fountain pen.” Woody Guthrie   “Do the math. Far from a deterrent, multi-million dollar fines are a minuscule cost of doing business...million dollar fines on billion dollar profiteering won't deter it...” Jim Hightower on    fines for illegal behavior in the meat packing industry.   Last week I wrote about corporate crime and how it is more prevalent, more costly, and more harmful to society than ordinary street crime (like murder, assault, robbery or rape). This week we look at the enemic law enforcement for corporate crime, the lack of meaningful consequen...

Corporate Crime

“The irony is that the nation I live in, once a beacon of democracy for my parents, is now dominated by corporations that value profit over people, safety and well-being,” Marta Tellado, CEO of Consumer Reports. Her parents fled Cuba in 1961. Crime was a major issue in the recent election. According to the Republicans “crime is  skyrocketing” and honest citizens are living in fear of widespread violent crime. “Criminals are “wreaking havoc on American cities” said Rep. Tom Tiffany despite his mostly rural northern Wisconsin congressional district having very low rates of crime. Of course the Republicans grossly exaggerate the ...

The Costs of Convenience

Climate change is caused by all of us. We all make choices that contribute to the problem. As individuals and as a nation we are not willing to sacrifice even smallest of conveniences to help mitigate the problems. In her song “Is It for Freedom” singer-songwriter Sara Thomsen asks, “Who pays the cost for the convenience we demand?” Her song is about war, but the question can apply to environmental issues. The answer is all humanity and the biosphere are paying the cost. Climate change is just one manifestation of our selfishness. Our wastefulness is another area of denial. Waste is a human invention. Nature has no waste. In nature ...

Tipping Points

“Only within the moment of time represented by the present century has one species – man –  acquired significant power to alter the nature of his world.” Rachel Carson author of Silent Spring writing during the 20th century. “...the unifying theme of collapsed civilizations is collective blindness to the depletion of natural resources.” Sara Wheeler in Magnetic North Humans are the only species that significantly impacts the earth. All species use the earth's natural resources. But humans are busy overusing nature's abundance and destroying  nature's life support systems. Humans have altered the earth's climate, oceans and  ...

Wisconsin Senate and Attorney General Races

In prior articles I talked about selecting candidates for elected office with the ability to do a good job representing us. Like hiring an employee, voters need to look at the education, knowledge, work history, experience and skills of the candidates to make the best choice. Employers also look at the attitudes and personal beliefs of potential employees. With the candidates discussed this week basic qualifications are not the issue. It is the attitudes and beliefs of the candidates that voters need to consider. There are significant differences in political and economic philosophy that will impact you, your family and the future of Wisconsin. ...

Electing The Future

It is easy to think elections and politics don't matter. But politics is how we make decisions and run our society. Who we elect makes a difference in many everyday practical ways. Do the potholes get filled? Is the water safe to drink? Do your kids have a good school? Do they have health care? Can they afford to go to college or tech school? Do your taxes go to help your community and build a better country? Or are they wasted on corporate subsidies, tax breaks for the wealthy or some war on the other side of the world? Our future will be shaped by the choices we make November 8th. We are electing our future and the future of our children and ...

Other Wisconsin Candidates

  This article discusses two Wisconsin statewide races that get little attention in the press; Secretary of State and State Treasurer. How much do you know about these candidates? Do you have enough information to make an informed choice? Because you don't have any information, will you simply not vote for either candidate? In Wisconsin, Republicans have spent years weakening and under-funding these two independently elected offices. This has included eliminating duties and advocating to abolish both the Treasurer and Secretary of State. Since Trumps “big lie” about the 2020 elections bring “rigged” and all the false claims of ...

Wisconsin Candidates for Assembly

Voting is like hiring an employee. Voters are hiring a representative to take care of public business for all of us. Employers typically look at education, work history, knowledge and skills to assess the person's ability to do the job. With some jobs there are formal certifications or skills assessment tests that can help. Unfortunately, with elected officials there are no formal qualifications, certifications, or civil service tests to weed out the incompetent. In Wisconsin you can't cut hair or sell real estate without training and a certification. But any nincompoop can run for office no matter how ignorant or unqualified. So voters are on ...

Comparing the U.S. Senate Candidates on Retirement Issues

  Wisconsin and the nation is facing a retirement security crisis. Many people will have inadequate income for a secure retirement. Over 400,000 seniors in Wisconsin will be living in poverty by 2030. As a result, Wisconsin will need to spend an additional $3.5 billion on public assistance programs. Why is this happening? There are many reasons. Low pay jobs don't allow saving for retirement. One million people have no retirement program at work. Individual savings plans, like 401Ks and IRAs, don't work well for many people. They have high management fees, involve stock market risk and require considerable, consistent investment. People ...

Mr. Ausman Goes to Washington

Richard Ausman is running for Congress. He is the Democratic candidate for the 7th Congressional district in northwestern Wisconsin. He is not a politician. He has never run for office before. Like the James Stewart character in “Mr Smith Goes to Washington,” Mr. Ausman is a “common man” hoping to go to Washington and change things. He says. “It is time to stop playing the blame game and cool the radical rhetoric that divides us as a people. It is time to move back towards a more traditional moderate center of the road pro-American approach where we are united as neighbors for our common good.” All politicians portray themselves as ...