Watchdog Wednesdays: Open Government Resources
Transparency in government is vital to a healthy democracy. Wisconsin has a long tradition of openness with regard to public meetings and records, including what may be the nation’s first state records law, enacted in 1849.
The Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism has put together a great resource guide for understanding the state’s open meetings and public records laws.
Watchdog Report - ATF Uses Rogue Tactics in Storefront Stings Nationwide
Aaron Key wasn’t sure he wanted a tattoo on his neck. Especially one of a giant squid smoking a joint.
But the guys running Squid’s Smoke Shop in Portland, Ore., convinced him: It would be a perfect way to promote their store.
They would even pay him and a friend $150 apiece if they agreed to turn their bodies into walking billboards.
Key, who is mentally disabled, was swayed.
He and his friend, Marquis Glover, liked Squid’s. It was their hangout. The 19-year-olds spent many afternoons there playing Xbox and chatting with the owner, “Squid,” and the store clerks.
So they took the money and got the ink etched on their necks, tentacles creeping down to their collarbones.
It would be months before the young men learned the whole thing was a setup. The guys running Squid’s were actually undercover ATF agents conducting a sting to get guns away from criminals and drugs off the street.
The tattoos had been sponsored by the U.S. government; advertisements for a fake storefront.
The teens found out as they were arrested and booked into jail.
Read more from the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s outstanding report here.
The Googlization of the Far Right: Why Is Google Funding Grover Norquist, Heritage Action and ALEC? | TruthOut
Google, the tech giant supposedly guided by its “don’t be evil” motto, has been funding a growing list of groups advancing the agenda of the Koch brothers.
Organizations that received “substantial” funding from Google for the first time over the past year include Grover Norquist’s Americans for Tax Reform, the Federalist Society, the American Conservative Union (best known for its CPAC conference), and the political arm of the Heritage Foundation that led the charge to shut down the government over the Affordable Care Act: Heritage Action.
Suspended Milwaukee Police Detective Rodolfo Gomez, Jr. Files Duty Disability Claim
Detective Rodolfo Gomez Jr. is currently suspended from the Milwaukee Police Department for beating a handcuffed suspect. He also has a lengthy history of disturbing behavior. And he, like 4 other officers currently suspended for disciplinary problems, has filed a duty disability claim that would allow him to continue receiving 75% of his salary, tax-free, despite being suspended.
Watch the Wisconsin State Supreme Court Hearing on Act 10 (MTI v. Scott Walker)
Chief Justice Shirley Abrahamson: “Do you agree that there is a constitutional right to associate? Do you agree with that?”
Lawyer defending Walker: “Absolutely not.”
MoveOn Petitions - Save Our Post Office
1. Stop closing US Postal Service mail processing plants.
2. Stop closing rural post offices.
3. Keep 6 day delivery of mail in America.
4. Return the postal service to the delivery standards prior to July 2012.
5. Return the overfunding of retirement accounts to the postal service.
Here’s some background information if you’d like to learn more about what’s going on with the post office.
You don’t want this headline. You really don’t. You don’t want this headline, you don’t want the story, you don’t want the hassle that’s about to happen.
--Democratic State Senator Jon Erpenbach, promising to give Wisconsin Republicans “all out hell” if they proceed with their plan to approve two new anti-abortion bills next Tuesday.
Talking Points Memo Asks: What Is Going On In Wisconsin -- And Why Is It So Secret?
It’s a topic so hot in Wisconsin, no one involved with it can talk about it. A wide-ranging investigation, a special prosecutor, and the cloak of secrecy. The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported this week that a former federal prosecutor had been appointed to lead a “John Doe investigation” into state-level issues in Wisconsin, including the 2011 and 2012 recall elections. And this John Doe investigation reportedly grew out of an earlier John Doe probe, which closed in March after snaring six former aides and associates of Gov. Scott Walker (R). But hang on a second. What exactly is a John Doe investigation? For those outside Wisconsin, the term may be unfamiliar, and with good reason. Wisconsin may be the only state that uses them.
"I have not left the Republican Party; it left me. I cannot tolerate a political party that demeans Texans based on their sexual orientation, the color of their skin or their economic status. I will not be a member of a party in which hate speech elevates candidates for higher office rather than disqualifying them. I cannot place my name on the ballot for a political party that is proud to destroy the lives of hundreds of thousands federal workers over the vain attempt to repeal a law that will provide health care to millions of people."
Secret probe spreads to five Wisconsin counties
A former top-level assistant U.S. attorney has been appointed a special prosecutor in a burgeoning, secret investigation into a wide variety of state issues, including possible campaign violations during the recent recall elections.
Why Wisconsin jails so many black people
The state that locks up the highest percentage of black men is Wisconsin. The national average is 6.7%, but in Wisconsin it’s 12.8% - more than three percentage points higher than the second-placed state, Oklahoma.
A visit to Milwaukee by the BBC’s Franz Strasser provides some of the answers why.
NO ONE has been aggressively arrested at the capital except Damon and CJ Terrell.
I wonder what these two brothers dont have in common with the people surrounding them.
They also somehow charged Damon with a felony for this, which is absolutely ridiculous.
Have the names of the officers been made public yet?
It’s also noteworthy that Governor Walker gave Capitol Police Chief Dave Erwin an 11.7% raise earlier this year; Erwin has since cracked down on people protesting the Governor.