Daily News/Blog Posts

Filmmaker Robert Greenwald Tells Truthout How the Koch Brothers Endanger Democracy and Our Health . BuzzFlash at Truthout first got to know Robert Greenwald when he and Earl Katz, who is now chair of Public Interest Pictures, were trying to get a film about the theft of the 2000 presidential election, "Unprecedented," off the ground. That was over a decade ago (4/12)

NYT Unloads on Scott Walker: The Wages of Ideology. Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin is struggling to fight off a determined effort to replace him in an extraordinary recall election scheduled for June 5. The original reason more than 900,000 Wisconsinites signed petitions to get him out of office was his signature on a bill that stripped most public employees of their collective bargaining rights (4/12)

Walker's snotty weak campaign start reflects his real personality. . The one benefit Scott Walker will see from the recall election, will be the dilution of protesters at his many stops throughout Wisconsin. It will be hard to keep up with him (4/12)

Mitt Romney's 'Women for Romney' surrogate is not for equal pay for women in Wisconsin. As he shakes the Etch A Sketch, Mitt Romney is trying hard to boost his appeal among women, after fully embracing the war on women just to keep up with Rick Santorum (4/12).

Walker flees Wisconsin people, Hides with Charlie Sykes. Even though everyone deserves to know exactly when Scott Walker first knew about the secret e-mail system run out of Walker's county executive office during his 2010 campaign for governor, don't look for a town hall question-and-answer session or a press conference on the topic (4/12).

Walker sends out conspiracy theory lackey to stall FBI “John Doe” investigation that continues to boil. It’s been pretty obvious that the database holding signatures of those who signed the Walker recall petition are becoming more about McCarthyistic techniques to make it a black list proving that the signatory is not a sucker for Walker (4/12)

Republican "War On Women" Is Not A Left-Wing Invention. The Dane County Democratic Party (web site) hosted a Gubernatorial Candidate Forum at the Concourse Hotel in Madison featuring Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, Former Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk, Wisconsin Secretary of State Doug La Follette and Wisconsin State Senator Kathleen Vinehout (4/12).

Paul Ryan's Cynical Catholic Claims. Following is the statement of Democratic Party of Wisconsin Communications Director Graeme Zielinski in response to claims made by Paul Ryan to justify his radical budget (4/12).

Struggling Sean Duffy, Reid Ribble Tops in Waste of Taxpayer Dollars For two men who pound their chests as fiscal conservatives, Wisconsin Reps. Sean Duffy and Reid Ribble certainly can blow through hundreds of thousands of dollars of taxpayer money in no time flat. And, for seemingly no return (4/12).

Mitt Romney’s Campaign on Whether Romney Supports the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act: ‘We’ll Get Back To You On That.’. On a press call this morning, Mitt Romney’s campaign was asked if Mitt Romney supports the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act. Their response to the question was, “We’ll get back to you on that.” Democratic Party of Wisconsin Chair Mike Tate released the following statement on the Romney campaign’s initial failure to take a position on pay equity for women (4/12).

No War on Women in Wisconsin?. Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker signed Senate Bill 202, essentially a reversal of Wisconsin's Equal Pay for Equal Work Act (Act 20), into law on April 5, 2012, more than a month after the bill was passed (4/12).

Wendy's is the 6th Firm to Say It is No Longer a Member of ALEC. Wendy's International, the parent company of Wendy's Old Fashioned Hamburger, is the sixth corporation to say that it is no longer a member of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) in the past week (4/12).

George Zimmerman faces second-degree murder charges for death of Trayvon Martin. Prosecutors Wednesday charged a neighborhood watch guard with second-degree murder in the killing of an unarmed US black teenager that sparked nationwide anger amid suspicions it was racially motivated (4/12).

John Mellencamp informs Gov. Scott Walker of his liberal beliefs. Liberal rocker John Mellencamp wants Gov. Scott Walker to know he supports collective bargaining and union powers and says Walker should be aware of that before using his song "Small Town" on the campaign trail (4/12)

4 Ways the Big Banks are Still Screwing Homeowners — And How They're Fighting Back. Here's how the banks are still doing exactly as they please when it comes to homes. But there's hope (4/12).

Meet the Rising Republican Star Who Would Love to Punch Hillary Clinton in the Face In case you haven't noticed, Wisconsin's been fraught with untenable political tumultuousness since one-man Human Centipede Scott Walker was elected governor. He's bullied teachers, attacked gay couples' hospital visitation rights, signed a repeal of Wisconsin's equal pay law, and rolled back sex education to an innocent time when kids thought storks brought babies (4/12).

Ryan's Recycled "Tipping Point" Scare Tactic Divides Americans, Hides Hypocrisy. . Have you seen the Paul Ryan headline yet? "Ryan says U.S. at financial and cultural 'tipping point'" Hmm, that late breaking headline sounds really familiar. Oh my gosh, here’s that same story as summarized so perfectly by Dana Milbank way back on March 20th (4/11).

For what you do, no bud for you. Bud Selig is the commissioner of major league baseball. The lords of the game pay him an enormous salary to do very little. Very little. Selig has a chair at the University of Wisconsin history Department. How did that happen? (4/11)

Republican "War On Women" Is Not A Left-Wing Invention. Right-wing media are claiming that a Republican "war on women" is "phony" and "invented" by the left to distract attention from issues such as the economy and gas prices. But Republicans throughout the country have indeed pushed a plethora of legislation during the past few years that would result in limiting women's reproductive rights, access to health care access, and access to equal pay; moreover, right-wing media themselves launched a bullying campaign against Georgetown law student Sandra Fluke after she testified in favor of expanded contraception coverage. (4/10).

GOP Panicking on John Doe Criminal Probe . One Wisconsin Now sent letters today to 9 current Wisconsin State Senators asking them to revoke their membership in the right-wing American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). The Senators would join the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and corporations like Coca-Cola, Pepsi, Intuit and Kraft who earlier announced they've pulled their support. The letter also asks that the nine refund the tax dollars that were used to purchase ALEC memberships on their behalf (4/11).

What is going on? If you need to know what’s wrong with American conservatism in the early 21st century you have only to look at their view of the Girl Scouts. You would think that legislatures would want to honor the 100th anniversary of an organization like the Girl Scouts but empowering women isn’t exactly what the patriarchal GOP is about (4/11).

Russell gets new lawyer in Doe case. Timothy Russell, the former Scott Walker aide facing felony embezzlement charges, has a new lawyer with Republican leanings. The attorney is Dennis Krueger, a former state prosecutor who recently joined Milwaukee attorney Michael Maistelman's law office. Krueger pops up in court records as one of Russell's lawyers as of Friday, the same day another lawyer -- John Birdsall -- withdrew (4/11).

Democrats question legality of running as a 'fake' candidate. Undaunted by claims that running as a fake Democratic candidate in the recalls constitutes criminal election fraud, six such candidates filed paperwork Tuesday to run in the May 8 primary (4/11).

UWM professor predicts Scott Walker will be GOP's VP choice. UWM Political Science Professor Mordecai Lee is making a bold prediction for the Republican VP candidate: Scott Walker. (4/11).

Paul Ryan's Cynical Catholic Claims. Following is the statement of Democratic Party of Wisconsin Communications Director Graeme Zielinski in response to claims made by Paul Ryan to justify his radical budget (4/11).

A little word game for the Fake Democratic Candidates... . Let’s see if the illegal and unethical electioneering by the Wisconsin Republican Party will stand up to a little test I came up with (4/11)

List of Bills Walker Signed Into Law Last Week. It's been well documented for some years now that abstinence based education *increases* the number of teen pregnancies AND that when you tell teenagers the truth about sex, as they do in Europe, not only do you get fewer pregnancy, you actually get fewer teenagers having sex in the first place (4/11).

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Buillding BridgesMarch 2012
Gone but not forgotten
by Betty Banks

Liesl Blockstein
Liesl Blockstein
Ilda Thomas-Contreras
Anna Mae Mitchell
Ilda Thomas 
As we go about our everyday lives, we do not often think about moments in time and people who have contributed to our quality of life and given of their time, not because they wanted honors and awards, but because they cared about their families and their communities. During our lifetime, here in Madison there were many women who fit that description. The following three women have passed on but their legacies remain with us.

During this month our salute to women include, Liesl Blockstein, Ilda Thomas-Contreras and Anna Mae Mitchell, Bridge Builders who each gave so that others would have opportunities to not only improve their individual lives, their contributions have had lasting impacts on our communities.

Liesl Blockstein was a former Dane County Supervisor and member of the Dane County Cultural Affairs Commission. Her devotion to the arts and her commitment to enriching the civic life in Dane County led to awards and honors and a Memorial Award established for those who promote the improvement of racial and cultural relations and cultural pluralism.

Liesl also served on the original board of directors of the Wisconsin Women's Network which was founded in 1979 under the name of the Feminist Advocacy Network. . Through the FAN/WWN she was affiliated with the Wisconsin Women's Politician Caucus.

Liesl's community activism is remembered annually through the Community Shares of Wisconsin Liesl Blockstein and Sally Sunde Social Justice Award. At the time of her death in 1986, she was the president of Community Shares of Wisconsin board. Her untimely death was the result of a car accident over 20 years ago but our community is indebted to Liesl who was unselfish in her drive to build a community that recognized and valued each and every citizen, and who recognized the importance of grass-roots efforts to achieve social change.

Anna Mae Mitchell with her husband raised 9 children in a home filled with love and strong values. As her family matured, Mae expanded her volunteer work and became an active participant in many Madison social justice causes. She was a founding member of the Madison Urban League, South Madison Coalition of the Elderly and Hospice, and was involved in many other organizations.

Her most cherished work was as a tutor with the children at Lincoln School. She encouraged a love of reading and learning in her students, reflecting her own values about the importance of education. Mae received numerous awards which was a tribute to her love of the Madison community and her commitment to South Madison.

Her work in the elderly community went above and beyond her paid work as a Nutrition Site Manager for Independent Living. She was dedicated to providing support to her peers and ensuring that Senior Citizens were aware of and had access to the many resources here in Dane County.

She was a trained Peer Counselor for older people and made home visits, providing support and making referrals when abuse was suspected. Mae continued her activism until her untimely death on April 23, 1987. She left behind a legacy of love, and community service that several of her children remain committed to.

Ilda Thomas-Contreras was a founder and first Executive Director of Centro Hispano. In its infancy Centro was designed to meet the needs of Cuban refugees who settled in Madison in the early 1980's. Ilda counseled many through Centro Hispano and many others at the Mental Health Center of Dane County. She earned the YWCA's Racial Justice Award in 1991 and will be remembered for her commitment to social justice.

During a moment in time when women and issues that affect them are under attack let us remember those who have gone before us. They raised families, found causes they believed in and built bridges that we continue to cross as we benefit from their passions for justice. We owe them and must never forget them.

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