Government


PART I: MINUTES REGARDING THE PEACE MARCH FROM THE COUNTY’S DIVERSITY AFFAIRS COMMISSION IN APRIL 2016

public records
(Editor's Note: The following is a record of the Diversity Affairs Commission meeting on April 22, 2016 at 9 a.m. in the Employers Resource Conference Room of the Marathon County Courthouse, 500 Forest Street, Wausau. You can read about the goals of the march as reflected in the minutes. The commission's discussion on the nature of the goals took place before the successful motion made in the county meeting to support the march.)The original can be found here: http://www.co.marathon.wi.us/Portals/0/Departments/MCB/Archives/Boards%20Committees%20Commissions/Diversity%...

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PART II: OFFICIAL MINUTES OF THE MARATHON COUNTY EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE ANNOUNCING RETENTION OF VON BRIESEN & ROPER, S.C. TO INVESTIGATE

public records
(Editor's Note: The following is an excerpt from the Marathon County Executive Committee meeting on Friday, June 3, 2016, at 1:00 p.m. in Assembly Room B-105, 500 Forest Street, Wausau. The committee and other individuals went into closed session to discuss a personnel matter before they returned to open session and the chairperson announced that Von Briesen & Roper, S.C. has been retained by the county to do an investigation on an employee matter.Recording secretary excused from closed session meeting. Non-committee members attend. View minutes below.The official ...

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SPECULATING ON THE EU VOTE

Last week the British voted to leave the European Union. The next day stock markets all over the world declined precipitously. The DOW in this country dropped 610 points in one day. According to Reuters news agency, global stock markets “lost” $2 trillion in value the day after the vote. Why did this happen? What does it mean?Wild fluctuations like this often occur with stock markets. The news media, pundits, and investment hucksters, of course, always have explanations. The usual spin is that “investors” have lost confidence, or they are “taking profits,” ...

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The Politics of Resentment: Rural Consciousness and the Rise of Scott Walker

The Politics of Resentment: Rural Consciousness and the Rise of Scott Walker by UW-Madison Professor, Katherine Cramer Part 2In Part 1, I summarized three themes people in the 39 rural groups spoke about: The role and size of government, taxes, and the animosity toward public sector employees. In Part 2, I will continue with the concerns of the rural people who were interviewed.1. The need for good paying jobs. “[It’s a great place to live] if you like poverty.” Many people work two or more jobs while living in poverty. The mine was a contentious issue. ...

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Wisconsin Civil Service Reform Is Ill Advised

Wisconsin's current administration was elected on an agenda of creating jobs, cutting taxes, and fixing the budgets shortfalls. They have failed to produce on all three points. Wisconsin is still lagging behind most other states in job creation. Tax cuts for most citizens have been zero or very small while fees have increased. The state budget is still a problem.They have succeeded in creating an avalanche of ill-advised public policy changes which have nothing to do with their original goals. They began with turning down federal dollars for high speed rail and ...

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THE POLITICS OF RESENTMENT

Growing up during the 50’s and 60’s in a small community in far northern Wisconsin, I was considered a “country hick.” Within this tightly-knit community, we parceled ourselves out by the church we attended, the jobs our parents held, whether we were farmers or business owners. Some community members were considered “high toned.” This term was applied to people who wore nicer clothes and drove a nicer car than most, worked “in town” rather than farmed or did manual labor.The people “in town” were known as “city slickers” because we felt they ...

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Socialism in the U.S. Military

military
Calling your opponent a socialist is a favorite American political slur. The public has been programed to equate socialism, or any deviation from pure free market capitalism, with being un-American. The Constitution, however, does not say much about organizing the economy. Capitalism is not synonymous with freedom or democracy. It is entirely possible to have a socialistic, or even communistic, economy and a representative democracy.Bernie Sanders is unique in openly claiming to be a democratic socialist. He does not intend, however, to change the structure of the ...

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Selective Memories

The good old days are the memories of things that never were. We remember what we want to and disregard the rest. Every Memorial Day, in our zeal to honor those who have served, we have a national picnic feast of selective memory about war.Our government is engaged in selectively remembering the Vietnam War. The Department of Defense is spending $65 million in a project to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the war. It is all about “honoring” the troops. As President Obama stated,“As we observe the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War, we reflect with solemn ...

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LOCAL CONTROL

Local control has been the bedrock of democracy and is responsive to the needs and health of the community. At an alarming rate, the party in control of Wisconsin since 2011 has been assaulting our rights and freedoms to determine our destiny at the local level.Since 2011, Republican lawmakers have passed 128 measures that restrict or reduce local control impacting Farmland Preservation, Public Instruction, Regional Transit, Shoreland Zoning Standards to name just a few. The nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau reported this in a May 16 memo.Eighty of these ...

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AUDIT THE PENTAGON

In "A Golden Age for Pentagon Waste" (US News and World Report, 2-3-16), William Hartung, director of the Arms and Security Project at the Center for International Policy, cites examples of Pentagon waste:*$17 billion spent on private villas and costly facilities that were barely used in Afghanistan.*$7 billion spent on unneeded equipment by the Defense Logistics Agency.*Congress inserted 11 additional F-35 combat aircraft into the last defense bill despite dubious value to the military. Over the last decade the F-35 project has cost $1.4 trillion and has yet ...

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