Culture


“The Test” – Wisconsin Values – A Progressive Balance

Person grading a test
Many months back a group of concerned citizens developed “The Test.” It was centered on three simple words - - - Fairness, Respect and Community. These words were chosen because they embody values that virtually all Wisconsinites hold dear. “The Test” was originally written to give citizens a basis upon which to assess proposed legislation and regulation, but it can also be applied to candidates for public office. As we approach the fall elections it is critical that we ask ourselves - - - does a candidate and what they propose and stand for represent fairness, ...

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The Soul of Wisconsin is a Sacred Thing

Wisconsin Map
“The Soul of Wisconsin is a sacred thing” are the words of poet, Marijane Curry.The “Soul of Wisconsin” has had a proud heritage of working together for the good of all citizens,but it has been bruised and battered by a governor who planned a “divide and conquer” strategy with billionaire, Diane Hendricks, who donated $500,000 to Walker in 2011. The strategy was to pit good, hardworking families, friends, and neighbors against each other.   Walker bragged about “dropping the bomb.” Let’s look at the results for 2014. Jobs lost as estimated:  ...

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Whose Freedom are we Celebrating?

Political Parties
WHOSE FREEDOM ARE WE CELEBRATING?On our beautiful 4th of July weekend of parades, picnics and watermelon, I wondered what kind of freedom we were celebrating. There are two versions of freedom operating in our nation. One is the progressive view and the other is the conservative view. Each side thinks he is right and that the other will destroy our nation. For further reading on this subject, check out Bill Bishop’s THE BIG SORT.I will refer to George Lakoff’s THE LITTLE BLUE BOOK, for the following insights:Freedom, to the conservative, is based on a strict ...

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Questions on Patriotism

American Flag
Questions About Patriotism Fourth of July celebrations get me thinking about patriotism and its role in our country. We are good at flag waving and platitudes. But our history shows we are not good at living up to our ideals. So patriotic holidays get me asking questions about what patriotism really means in America.Why is patriotism considered the highest of virtues? Shouldn't we be more concerned about people?  Shouldn't we love morality, justice, or tolerance more? Christ said we should love our neighbor, not our country.Why is patriotism always expressed in ...

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ON THE BOOKSHELVES… “Wisconsin Bucket List: 100 Ways to Have a Real Wisconsin Experience”

fish museum
“In my opinion, it is entirely possible that America’s Dairyland was once a shooting starthat traveled from the Milky Way and landed in the heartland of our great nation.”— Kelly Jo Stull, author of The Wisconsin Bucket ListLooking for a home-grown GRADUATION, RETIREMENT, or FATHER'S DAY GIFT to kick off the summer travel season?Wisconsin Bucket List: 100 Ways to Have a Real Wisconsin Experience is a compendium of 100 iconic Wisconsin attractions that will warm your heart as you laugh and nod in recognition of your own childhood memories and musings...

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World War I Centennial

WWI Memorial
Thousands of soldiers with bayoneted rifles going “over the top” of a barb-wired, rat infested trench.  Ever onward, soldiers fall to the left, to the right, in front and back  mowed down by enemy gunfire while crossing ever more trenches into “No man’s land.” Hundreds of dead soldiers lying face down amidst the trees in a forest. Row after row of hospital beds filled with wounded soldiers tended by  Red Cross nurses. Blackened  corpses lying in a hastily dug grave.  Soldiers in gas masks.  The ghastly scenes of gas warfare. Millions of ...

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Honor the Fallen by Working for Peace

Honoring the fallen
On Memorial Day we remember our military dead and honor their sacrifice. But we do not honor veterans by lying to ourselves about why they died.Many Americans believe we are “free” because of the military and the sacrifice of our troops. “Got freedom? Thank a Vet!” This is a nice sound bite, but it is not true.This slogan only blinds us to the real causes of war. It promotes the next war. It justifies the war industry and maintains recruiting. It is misleading because it assumes that only veterans have protected our freedoms. And it assumes our numerous ...

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