Archive for the ‘National InSecurity/Heimatssicherheitsdienst/Staatssicherheit’ Category

Dane County Circuit Court Judge Race: Karofsky v Townsend

Thursday, March 30th, 2017

VOTE APRIL 4! 

Below is a questionnaire I recently sent to the judicial candidates on the ballot. 

***

Dear Candidates for Dane County Circuit Court Judge,
We are in the process of making decisions about the upcoming elections for Dane County Circuit Court Judge. In the past we have been quite generous with our work and resources on campaigns for erstwhile good candidates. We vote in every spring election, as do our numerous friends and acquaintances. Unfortunately, most of those we have supported have gone on to betray the very ideals they campaigned for in very fundamental ways, so we hope you might understand that we wish to have your positions stated clearly before you take office.

1. If you become a Dane County judge, do you intend to uphold, defend and interpret the Constitution of the United States of America *as it is written* or will you merely follow the interpretation handed down over recent decades by increasingly reactionary superior court judges?

2.a. In light of the above, what will the following sentence mean to you when peaceable protesters, and ‘petitioners of government for redress of grievance,’ are hauled into your court (as they routinely are in Dane County) for alleged “crimes” of, well, protesting and petitioning for redress of grievance?

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

2. b. Specifically, does “no” mean “no”?

3. Bicycling Outlawed: Through a number of legal perversions, Dane County prosecutors and judges have effectively outlawed bicycling in Dane County. Through routine abuse of the vaguely worded Disorderly Conduct statute, for over 25 years a succession of Dane County prosecutors–rising then to circuit court judgeships and now into the appellate level–have pursued cyclists in a most vindictive manner. Bicycling victims of murderous motorized road rage have been repeatedly prosecuted by current and past Dane County district attorneys for the crime of, well, bicycling. This is happening despite the fact that:

-the offending drivers involved in *all* of these cases have a long history of criminality, violence and reckless driving while the cyclist invariably is a professional (or in training) with no criminal–or even civil– record whatsoever (and are thus easily intimidated into bogus pleas).
-despite the fact that State, Dane County and City of Madison policy is to promote bicycling. See the City of Madison Platinum Bicycle Plan here (PDF): https://www.cityofmadison.com/trafficEngineering/documents/PlatinumAdopted040808sm.pdf).
and,
-despite the fact that the bicycle is defined as a legal vehicle by state statutes.
-For more on the Dane County prosecutor’s routine re-victimization of victims of automotive road violence, Google “Ozanne’s Crackdealer” or “Blanchard’s Beloit Crackdealer” Or just go to:
http://www.urbanthoreau.com/blog/?p=2095

*Will you end the vindictive prosecutions of bicyclists?*

4. Will you educate yourself about the rights and responsibilities of bicyclists in this state by attending a Wisconsin Department of Transportation “Enforcement for Bicycle Safety” seminar within the first six months of your swearing in?Information can be found here:
http://www.dot.wisconsin.gov/safety/vehicle/bicycle/education.htm#law-enforcement
(There is also a version of this course specifically for judges and prosecutors.) Will you properly instruct juries as to the legal standing of bicyclists and, furthermore, instruct that the societal bias–fully infecting local law enforcement and prosecutorial agencies–in favor of the driver/against the cyclist has no role in a court of law? And will you have the courage to throw out cases arising from the current atmosphere of prosecutorial vindictiveness toward cyclists?

5. Equal Protection:

The Dane County “Justice” system routinely charges, prosecutes, and imprisons black men at SIX times the rate of white men with similar prior records, for similar crimes. By allowing these disproportionate numbers of prosecutions to even appear in court, the Dane County judiciary has made Dane County an international embarrassment of injustice. What will you do to ensure that justice is administered in a fair and equitable manner consistent with the 14th Amendment (and by extension the 15th Amendment given the disproportionate disenfranchisement through disproportionate felony convictions) of the United States Constitution?

I have copied this query to several other Dane County residents who are interested in justice in Dane County. This will include a large group of cyclists. And they vote.

If you use the old cop-out of “I don’t address specific cases,” We will call you out on it. Because we are not asking about your opinion on specific cases. We are asking about your intentions to uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States of America, the Constitution of the State of Wisconsin and adherence to state statutes–*as they are written*–as cases come before you.

Thank you for your time and your work in your candidacy.

Sincerely,
Michael D. Barrett and Pamela S. Barrett
XXXX XXXX XX
Madison, WI XXXXX
(XXX)XXX-XXXX

Trump is Just Symptom of Clinton’s Disease

Tuesday, November 8th, 2016

Dunno how this one is going to turn out, but just wanted to get some thoughts down about how badly our “Betters,” the Very Serious People, the élites of the country, have so screwed us, and thus brought us to this pass. And they know it, too. They belatedly realize that “those people” Beyond The Hudson and Outside of the Beltway actually–gasp!–vote. Now our betters are in a panic. And at least paying lip service to the 99%. There have even been some mea culpas trotted out by the old bulls of foreign policy: Please, please, pretty please, ye unwashed, give us just one more chance!

Then there’s this Atlantic article, another in a long series of what I’m calling The Great Panic of Aught 16 (ie, the establishment in a tailspin over The Bern and The Donald):

It’s actually quite good. Basically explains the genesis of the Democratic Leadership Council Democrat (the sellout wing of the party funded by the Koch Bros.) whom I so vehemently abhor. HRC is the latest in a long line of these turncoats. Also helps explain the link between these bankster-friendly neo-liberals and the pro-war neo-cons, a link which I had always found bizarre but understand better now.

But, sorry neo-liberal élites, Hillary et al, you’ve had your chance, and you blew it. Win or lose, you have blown it. You should have read your What’s the Matter with Kansas back in Aught Four and paid attention to its prescience. You should have paid attention to the data which so clearly showed the crushing of the poor and the middle class. Instead of ensuring a more just and equitable America, you just doubled down on:

  • Economics of Cruelty–Your unfair “free” trade pacts and tax policies that crush the 99% while gilding the preciousness of the 0.1%
  • Torture–You let them off the hook, shaming this nation, enfeebling our moral standing.
  • Warmongering–You voted for those wars.
  • Stasiland–You turned the people’s government into a surveillance state, shredding our Constitution. It was a coup and you were part of it.
  • Banksterism–You rescinded Glass-Steagall and other reasonable regulations, allowing the banksters to drive our economy into a ditch, then let them steal people’s houses. And when that wasn’t enough, you let them loot the treasury. And now you cozy up to them. Yes, Hillary, brilliant idea you proposed at that Goldman Sachs dinner: let the banksters regulate the banksters.
  • Global Warmism–You send us into multiple wars for oil to keep cars well-fueled, then the economy goes into a tailspin from sky high fuel prices thanks to your pro-highway policies (remember your ‘drive til you qualify’ housing policies?), your solution is…to build more highways! Thanks to your pro-gluttony transportation policies we are cooking the climate.

You and your party had it all from 2009 to 2011–the presidency, congress, everything– and you did nothing to rectify the worst excesses of the Bush years. Indeed, you people just gave it your Democratic imprimatur.

And then you wonder why the people revolted.  From 2009 to 2011 you had it all. And you just doubled down on the cruelty.

We’ve had quite enough of you people. Even if you eke out a win we’ve had it with you.

Basically, we the people have but one very blunt instrument available, and that is the vote. We couldn’t get the likes of Hillary to hear us, so masses of us voted against her in the primaries. It shook her up and made her adopt a more, shall we say, 99%-friendly posture. But the emails prove that she is busy staying cozy with the banksters and the 0.1%. And I will never be able to forgive her for her Iraq War vote. So, I’m done with her. (Don’t worry, I won’t be voting Trump though.)

 

Why Mark Pocan Fails…

Tuesday, August 14th, 2012

…To interest me….In the least:

From 2008 til 2010, he had it all. The Democrats owned the Governor’s Mansion, the Senate and the Assembly. He was the leader in the Assembly. As such, he co-chaired the all-powerful Joint Finance Committee. He was one of the three most powerful people in the state.

Did he advance education? Nope. Nixed funding for 4-year old kindergarten.

Did he fight for the environment? Nope. Nixed the Clean Energy Jobs Act (an excellent, all-encompassing plan; our one hope to launch a clean energy, hyper-energy efficient economy…).

Did he advance Bicycling? Nope. Slashed funding back to below early ’90s levels.

Did he advance walking? Nope. Ditto.

Did he advance transit? Nope. Ditto. Oh, no, wait. He slashed state support for transit to below levels established by Republican Tommy Thompson.

He sat on his hands.

What did he do with all that money he nixed out of good, people-supporting jobs & services? He accelerated wasteful highway expansions across the state, including the hyper-wasteful US Highway 51 expansion between De Forest and Madison (a route already served by the 8-lane Interstate 90/94/39), the Verona Road interchange, Interstate 94 between Cottage Grove and Madison, and the County Highways S & M (Mineral Pt. Rd & CTH M) intersection. All of these expansions support landscapes of Republicanism and militate against access to good jobs for the poor and working class. Contrary to his claims, Mark Pocan is no friend of the working class.

Let’s face it, we keep advancing lame Democrats like Mark Pocan, who fill the coffers of dirty energy and dirty transportation companies, and then wonder how it is that the Republicans keep beating us in the cash race.

Mark, buddy, I’ve got news for you, it is because you gave them the money!

I’m not exactly thrilled about his opponent Kelda Helen Roys either. I don’t think she exactly gets the money game either. I will cut her some slack about the 2008-2010 time period since she was just a rookie backbencher then. But she should have been raising holy hell about all the subsidies that Pocan & Co. were giving out to the grey economy companies. This past weekend on the Ride the Drive (ok, major plus that she set up campaign operations at that event!), I brought up to her that Tammy Baldwin had been doing the same thing for years, supporting the pavers and polluters (Kipp’s festering filth, anyone? The giant highways she supports now and supported all the way back to her days on the county board?), and that I didn’t want a clone of her in there, she fell silent. No one wants to say anything bad about St. Tammy. After all, Roys seems to be promoting the same old grey stuff Tammy so loves. From Roys’s website: “I support robust transportation investments to build our infrastructure in roads, rail, air, and waterways.” More expansion of the same crap that got us into this hot mess. (Then somewhere way on down there sits bicycling and walking; clearly afterthoughts.)

At the 350.org candidate forum, I felt that the best, most thoughtful candidate performance was by Matt Silverman. As a veteran–an officer who led troops in battle in Iraq–he was the only candidate there who explained–straight up–the ugly connection between our fossil fuel addiction and war. I applaud such honesty. Neither Roys nor Pocan could muster up that courage. I was just sorry to see him cling to the belief that there could be any compromise with Republicans. He made such compromise a highlight of his talk at the forum, and, from his website: “I know that the only way forward is meaningful compromise and cooperation between Democrats and Republicans.” Dude, those days died at the dawn of the Reagan era. I mean, Democrats are so afraid of their own shadows that they can’t even come up with a program within their own caucus–even when they have it all! (I’m talking about, for example, the healthcare debacle which resulted in the adoption of the righ-wing Heritage Foundation’s plan from the early 90s late 80s–and this came out of a congress with a strong Dem majority in both houses and a Dem-owned the presidency!)

Dems need to get their own house in order first.

Why do Democrats insist on being so absolutely gutless? They need to learn that Americans want their leaders to have guts; to be leaders. Pocan and Roys have not shown me that.

I need to see leadership dedicated to defunding the corporate enterprises that would grind us into dust.

Update 08/15/2012: Looks like he-who-sat-on-his-hands won. And decisively. I’m beginning to wonder whether this district, so full of high-IQ types as it is, is really so smart after all. Maybe it is just the reflexive gutlessness, not the brainpower….

 

Walker’s New Tool: Dane County Human Services

Saturday, March 3rd, 2012

Here’s the latest on the Capitol front…I sent this to my County Supervisor, John Hendrick, on February 27, 2012.

-Mike

***

Hello John,

I hope this email finds you well.
It has come to my attention that Dane County Human Services is now in the business of harassing protesters for the “crime” of bringing children to protests.
Here’s the situation. A good friend of mine, Craig Spaulding, has been one of the most ardent protesters at the Capitol since the beginning. His 11-year old daughter has been very much involved in First Amendment action at the Capitol as well. She is so much a thorn in the side of the Republicans that the Capitol Police have begun to physically abuse her (they have pushed, shoved and jerked her around; she has bruises to prove it). And now they have taken to trying to emotionally abuse her. After they arrested her dad, Craig, (for the “crime” of having raised a cross during state-established prayer), they told her that her dad would be in prison for a very, very long time. That she would be taken to foster care permanently. Of course, he was booked & released. But now they have embarked on a campaign to manipulate Dane County’s child protective services to have her separated from her family.
Terrorizing an 11-year old girl is now the way of it.
They haven’t stopped there. (And this is where your oversight responsibilities come in….) Here’s how the Capitol Police are now enlisting Dane County Human Services in the terrorization of children. About a week & a half ago, DCHS showed up to O’Keeffe Middle School. They had Mr. Spaulding’s daughter called out of class (completely unbeknownst to Mr. Spaulding), and had this announced to the entire class: “[Daughter’s name withheld by me], Dane County  would like to speak to you.” Nice. Great way to smash a kids spirit before her peers. I consider Dane County’s—and the Madison School District’s—actions a gross violation of privacy.
So the DCHS agent gets her in a room by herself and starts asking questions which implied that sexual abuse had been going on in her life. Mr. Spaulding’s daughter—at this point having no idea why this questioning is going on—answered all the questions truthfully. At one point she finally figured out what this was all about (she is indeed whip-smart) when some question about being left alone at the Capitol came up. She got right in the investigator’s face and sternly asked him: ” Who put you up to this? Chief Tubbs?[*] Mael [a Capitol Police officer]?” At that point, the investigator knew the jig was up and ceased questioning.
Now the Capitol Police follow her after school.
For months the Republican leadership has threatened to bring child abuse charges against parents of child protesters. Now that the protester numbers are manageable, they are actually pressing the brownshirts into action. And the people whom we the people of Dane County are funding are carrying out their brownshirt tactics. I don’t use the fascist comparison lightly. But we do know that one of the salient features of the rise of the Nazis was in their ability to infiltrate, bully, undermine and eviscerate professions and professional standards. Breaking up families, setting one family member against another was another major tactic. It is happening now. Right here in Dane County, carried out by Dane County officials.
You, John, are our representative. As a county legislator, you are expected to oversee the proper *professional* functioning our county’s bureaucracies. You vote for their funding.
You have a responsibility. A responsibility to protect your constituents when they suffer abuse at the hands of Dane County officials.
I have told you about how the Capitol Police behaved toward me, and how another county bureaucracy—Dane County’s DA—actively promoted the state’s acts of violence against me. The Dane County DA continues to behave monstrously toward minorities. You have done nothing to demand accountability (dumping cash on out of control officials is not accountability), much less even respond to my request for accountability.
Will this be another such case?
A young girl is being bullied by the state police and Dane County officials. What will you do about it, John?
Sincerely,
Mike Barrett
***
Update: County Supervisor Hendrick replied that he will check with the oversight committee – Health and Human Needs. I’ll update here with the results, if any.
*Update 2: “Segway” Jeremy Ryan has more on Capitol Police Chief Charles Tubbs’s connections to the National Sicherheitsstaat.

Sigourney Weavers to Serenade Walkerville, TONIGHT, 6PM

Tuesday, June 14th, 2011

Sigourney

Weavers

Play,

Walkerville.

Tonight, 14 June, 2011, 6PM

 

Walker Planning Martial Law

Friday, May 6th, 2011

Indeed.

Herr Walker has been violating a court order to return open access to the Capitol for some months now. According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, he has now activated the National Guard to develop military responses to further dissent.

So the military — every officer, every soldier, individually — comes to that line: To kill, maim, brutalize their own citizens; or, to dig deep into their moral being.

This is the time for each & every officer and soldier to review their oath, and understand the constitution — as well as it’s amendments — which they swore to uphold & defend. A quick review of Nuremberg precedents is in order as well.

While I’m no fan of the Egyptian military, and I’m not saying they behaved perfectly this spring, but, civilized people everywhere should applaud their moral bearing in respecting their civilian populace’s right ‘peaceably to assemble.’ In civilized societies, militaries have no business in politics.

This will be a true test of our National Guard’s moral mettle.

As someone who has commissioned service under his belt, I know which side of the line I would be on.

Now.

 

 

Peripatetic Cyber-Peregrinations

Monday, May 2nd, 2011

Miscellaneous readings of late:

Free will does exist.

Buses have history, too!

Jack up the gas tax! For decades I’ve been pushing for radically higher gas taxes, at the pump, as well as carbon taxes & such. This little article earned me many enemies among good liberals*, and my public testimony against Mayor Pave’s dirty air budget earned me threats of violence from rightists like Vicki Pyzinski (a.k.a. Vicki McKenna) . And now, finally, years later, it looks like the big brains at Harvard have finally figured out that higher carbon taxes are the only way to get ourselves off of that filthy addiction.

*Whenever a gas tax gets talked about, good middle class liberals wail about “the poor! What about THE POOR?!” What they really mean is, what about their own ability to wastefully deathmobile everywhere. The poor don’t drive much to begin with — about 1/10 as much as a typical middle class suburbanite — and furthermore, there are ways to recycle carbon/fuel taxes on machines back to people through lower income taxes (or higher EITC). If done progressively, this could end up putting more money back into the hands of the poor than any other mechanism out there.

Unobtanium Discovered in Afghanistan!

Monday, June 14th, 2010

And Lithium, too! Enough to keep everyone in Prius batteries for decades to come.

And now we have a real excuse to keep the war going forever…..as usual in the name of deathmobiling forevermore.

Na’avi Kickin’ Some Ass & Takin’ Some Names

Wednesday, April 14th, 2010

Ok, so let’s see, the best equipped, best trained most ferociously powerful army ever fielded in the history of the world seeks to subdue a medieval country equipped with nothing better than WW I equipment, and virtually no formal military training….sounds like the makings of a rout, eh?

But sometimes, hollywood fantasies turn out to be more accurate predictors of the future than the Pentagon’s macho-man plans. Indeed, it looks like the greatest army is tucking tail and slinking back to base after getting its ass kicked by third world (barely) villagers.

The abovelinked NYT article ends with this:

Looking back, soldiers say the effort shows how choices made from a lack of understanding or consultation with local people can drive them into the arms of the insurgents.

“We had the best intentions, but when you don’t fully understand the culture” it is impossible to make the right choices, said Major Fussell.

Gee, ya think?

For a little insider perspective, consider this: back when I was in the Green Machine (mid-late 80s), I was constantly derided by my fellow officers for doing wacky — and extremely un-manly — things like learning the language of the place we were stationed or training in (fluent in Italian, pretty good with German, and even picked up a little Turkish). Actually engaging the locals — which I had a very bad habit of doing — was particularly horrifying for them. I was obviously not destined to last long in that environment. But at least I was able to inflict maximum irritation upon the manly-men while serving. (Can you tell I’m a Holden Caulfield fan?!)

I’d like to think that maybe they will learn a lesson from their travails in Iraq & Afghanistan, but I doubt it. I’ve talked with enough of those who stayed in. They don’t get it. My generation of officers came up in the shadows of Viet Nam. Our training, by officers who had served there, was meant to help us avoid the mistakes of that war. The manly-men who got promoted from my generation are the ones in charge now, making the exact same mistakes as their predecessors in Viet Nam.

They really don’t get it.

But it isn’t their job to get it, really. They are trained to do what they do and that’s it. A big part of what they do is taking orders from civilians in charge. That’s us. We appoint, through a vote, the people who give them their marching orders.

So as you recoil in horror to the latest gruesome videotaped slaughter, keep in mind, the dogs of war have been loosed for one and only one reason: to satisfy gluttonous, deathmobiling lifestyle Americans insist on maintaining. Lust for the Unobtainium-based lifestyle as it were. Expect more slaughter of the Na’avi in the pursuit of it. But remember the karmic ending.

And here’s another good description of the karmic process at work as Jesus H. Obama’s drone strikes obliterate international law and shred our own constitution.

On Zombies

Wednesday, December 16th, 2009

For several months I’ve been tagging various politicians as “zombie politicians” (Mayor Pave being Exibit A).

For a definition of what I mean by “zombie politician,” check out this excellent article at Truthout.org.