It's New Years Eve. 2005 is today and 2006 is tomorrow. Time for a quick look back and review the year. Let's see...
A year ago, I don't think I'd ever looked at a blog. I'd heard the name in connection with the Bush war record v. Dan Rather debate over type fonts exposed by Little Green Footballs. In February, somebody told me about the ontheborderline.net blog in Hudson. I checked it out, joined and started commenting. I thought the OTBL blog was a place for debate and discussion, I quickly learned it was a klan of right-wing anti-tax, anti-community, anti-union hell-bent on using anyone who dare disagree with them as a pissing post.
Even though I persisted commenting there for the next three months, I knew our romance would be a brief one. Finally they gave me the boot for being "lewd and vulgar" and told me to go start my own blog. So I did. When word got out about this blog, the first two people to sign up said they too were kicked off of OTBL for being "lewd and vulgar." ...a repeating theme...
In late June, I started writing a series of letters to the editor at the Hudson Star Observer exposing the hypocrisy I was seeing between the deeds and words of the OTBL'ers. This led to increased publicity for their site and brought attention to this site.
I put on a hit counter in late July and have gotten 8,722 hits. We average about 100 per day. It goes down on the weekend and up during the week. I'm attributing that to work site computers. A handful of people have joined this site and post with varying degrees of frequency. Others send stuff by e-mail that I will use. Some have corresponded with me by e-mail to discuss various topics.
In September, I started writing another series of letters to the editor at the New Richmond News pointing out the invasion of the OTBL blogtroopers into the New Richmond school district debates and discussion. This brought more attention to both these blog sites. In October, I stood next to three of the infamous OTBL blogs at WITC during a community meeting on school district planning. I ate a cookie and listened to them plot their strategy.
In October, I addressed the NR school board with a question about the posting of confidential, executive session information that was released to and posted on the OTBL blog. A few weeks later, after another OTBL posting on NR school district, executive session information, I contacted NR's acting school superintendent about the timing of the OTBL posting. I posted the response to the timeline I was provided and this blog became the topic of a school board meeting.
In December, the New Richmond News did an indepth article titled "Battle of the Blogs." I was pictured on the front page of the News, sword in hand, computer by my side and Michael Moore-ish Michigan State Spartan cap on my head. The OTBL'ers were obviously jealous about me getting my picture on the front page of the NR News. Of course, they will deny this and deny all knowledge that I exist -- but I'm the who gets asked by the women of Quik Trip for autographed copies.
The OTBL'ers whined about the idea of there being a "blog war" and pointed to my "obsession" over getting kicked off their blog. Sister Clarentine is the one who called me a "pugilist" way back in sixth grade. When I asked her what that meant, she flung a dictionary at me and told me to look it up. I looked it up, read the definition and told her that was a compliment. She said she meant it as one. If you follow this blog, by now you should now that I pretty much give all credit and blame to the nuns at St. Pat's who will forever patrol my memories of that grade school prison in Hudson.
To the OTBL'ers I say your wall of selfishness has been breached, the rotten teeth of your selfish politically hypocrisy have been exposed and the dark stains of your agenda have leaked through your blogger shorts. To those contributing to this blog and providing encouragement, I say thanks. To you readers, we hope you find this a worthwhile stop in the blogsophere.
2005 has definitely been a learning experience. Who knows what 2006 will bring? One thing is for certain, we will keep on truckin' above the border line!
It's New Years Eve. 2005 is today and 2006 is tomorrow. Time for a quick look back and review the year. Let's see...
Dr. Luke, St. Croix Valley blog pioneer and owner of one of the last outhouses in the county, died. So his wife, Mr. Bill Ph. D., went to the local paper, the Holy Scared Oracle, to put a notice in the obituaries. A tall stovepipe of a man at the counter, after offering his condolences, asked Mr. Bill Ph. D. what she would like to say about Luke in the obit.
Mr. Bill Ph. D. replied, "You just put 'Luke died'."
The man at the counter, somewhat perplexed, said, "That's it? Just 'Luke died.'? Surely, there must be something more you'd like to say about Dr. Luke. I know Dr. Luke always wish for death before taxes, so if it's money you're concerned about, the first five words are free. We must say something more."
So Mr. Bill Ph. D. pondered for a few minutes and finally said, "O.K. You put, 'Luke died. Computer for sale.'"
at 12/31/2005 Posted by A Viewer
If it weren't for State Provided Health Insurance Programs what would these working poor families do? Most of us are one pink slip and a major health issue away from financial ruin. This is what the ownership society is bringing your way. Prosperity for the few, and catastrophe for many. Compare the 2 articles below:
|Rank||Name||Net Worth ($mil)||Age||Residence||Source|
|1||Gates, William Henry III||51,000||49||Medina, WA||Microsoft|
|2||Buffett, Warren Edward||40,000||75||Omaha, NE||Berkshire Hathaway|
|3||Allen, Paul Gardner||22,500||52||Seattle, WA||Microsoft, investments|
|4||Dell, Michael||18,000||40||Austin, TX||Dell|
|5||Ellison, Lawrence Joseph||17,000||61||Silicon Valley, CA||Oracle|
|6||Walton, Christy||15,700||50||Jackson, WY||Wal-Mart inheritance|
|6||Walton, Jim C||15,700||57||Bentonville, AR||Wal-Mart|
|8||Walton, S Robson||15,600||61||Bentonville, AR||Wal-Mart|
|9||Walton, Alice L||15,500||56||Fort Worth, TX||Wal-Mart|
|10||Walton, Helen R||15,400||86||Bentonville, AR||Wal-Mart|
Some of the people on the list above can't seem to afford to provide adaquate health insurance coverage for their emplyees, and guess who pays for what they refuse to?
Wal-Mart Admits Public Health Care Assistance is a “Better Value”
- Despite $10 billion in profits, President and CEO Lee Scott said, "In some of our states, the public program may actually be a better value - with relatively high income limits to qualify, and low premiums." (Transcript Lee Scott Speech 4/5/05)
Wal-Mart’s Most Affordable Health Plan is Costly
- According to Wal-Mart, “We insure more than 500,000 associates, including many family members, who pay as little as $17.50 for individual coverage and $70.50 for family coverage bi-weekly.”
- Wal-Mart’s most affordable plan includes a $1,000 deductible for single coverage and a $3,000 deductible for family coverage ($1,000 deductible per person covered up to $3,000). An average full-time worker earns $17,114 a year.
- If a full-time Wal-Mart hourly employee elects for single coverage, the employee would have to spend on average 9% of their earnings before the health insurance provided any reimbursement.
- If a full-time employee elected for family coverage, an average employee would have to spend 27% of their average earnings before the health insurance covered any costs. (Wal-Mart 2004 Associate Guide and UFCW Analysis).
Combined, the 13 states disclose that at least 55,000* Wal-Mart employees, children, and spouses are covered by state health insurance programs. A total of 480,000 Wal-Mart employees work in these 12 states, meaning that on average for every nine Wal-Mart employees, at least one Wal-Mart family member is getting state-provided health care.
A total of approximately 505,000 Wal-Mart employees work in these 13 states.
*The figure for Arkansas include forms of public aid other than health care, however Medicaid makes up the primary component.
at 12/28/2005 Posted by Andy Rand
A marriage of tech and activism at Wisconsin's No on the Amendment
Blogs to battle the proposed state constitutional ban on same-sex marriage
Wisconsin's No on the Amendment is emerging as a leading source of information and networking for activists opposed to a proposed state constitional ban on same-sex marriage and other domestic benefits for same-sex partners. The group blog launched in mid-October, written by three staffers of Action Wisconsin, "a statewide organization dedicated to advancing and protecting the civil rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people."
Read more the story by Kristian Knutsen@ The Daily Page out of Madison.
Get more facts, info and links@ Vote No On The Amendment blog site.
"As long as the differences and diversities of mankind exist, democracy must allow for compromise, for accommodation, and for the recognition of differences."
Excessive Hot Air Detected!
Terminal Boredom Reigns Supreme!!
Intellectual fraud melts down!
spiritofpublicus reruns his post of intellectual fraud
"A conservative is someone who admires radicals a century after they're dead."
"If you're not confused by economics, you're not paying attention."
"You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, and that has long been sufficient for any government."
John Kenneth Galbraith said:
"There is an old saying, or should be, that it is a wise economist who recognizes the scope of his own generalizations."
John Maynard Keynes said:
"Unlike physics, for example, such parts of the bare bones of economic theory as are expressible in mathematical form are extremely easy compared with the economic interpretation of the complex and incompletely known facts of experience, and lead one a very little way towards establishing useful results."
Paul R. Krugman said:
"However, the fact that an economist offers a theoretical analysis does not and should not automatically command respect. What is needed is some assurance that the analysis is actually relevant."
Associated Press Headline: Several questioned in Milwaukee beating
(Note: Below is a tragic story about a beating of a man for honking his horn yesterday at a crowd on the street in Milwaukee. A couple weeks ago I read a comment to a post at ontheborderline.net that Governor Doyle and the vast majority of Democrats were trying to make it really hard to stop crime in Wisconsin. Delaying passage and signing of Wisconsin's conceal and carry law would help prevent this type of hideous, brutal crime -- the comment intimated.
Just think, with conceal and carry, arm citizens could have legally jumped out of their cars and started emptying their clips on these thugs. Of the gun-owning friends I talk to about the need for conceal and carry, only one thinks it's really needed -- and he is a gun dealer.)
Associated Press (MILWAUKEE) - A motorist who was kicked, punched and left alone in the street after honking at a group of people suffered severe head trauma and may not survive, police said.
Several people were questioned by detectives after police and city officials asked for the public's help in finding the assailants, believed to be between 16 and 23 years old. It was the latest in a string of mob beatings in the city since 2002.
Family members identified the victim as Samuel McClain, 50. His niece, Jennifer McClain, said he was believed to have been going to a friend's house at the time.
McClain was hospitalized in critical condition with severe head trauma, according to police. His condition has improved since he was beaten about 10:30 p.m. Monday, said police Lt. Scott Lange.
A group of people surrounded McClain's vehicle after he honked at them because they were in the middle of the street, said police spokeswoman Anne E. Schwartz.
The assailants, thought to be between 16 and 23 years old, yanked him from the car, beat and kicked him, she said.
Read more: Milwaukee beating
The Dakota Indians of North America passed on this piece of wisdom from generation to generation by word of mouth: “If you are riding a dead horse, the best thing to do is dismount”. In the corporate world, because of the heavy investment factor, other things to be tried include the following:
- Change riders
- Appoint a committee to study the horse
- Arrange to visit other sites to see how they ride dead horses
- Change the form so it reads, “This horse is not dead"
- Hire outside contractors to ride the dead horse
- Harness several dead horses together for increased speed and efficiency
- Donate the dead horse to a recognised charity therefore deducting its full original cost
- Declare the dead horse has lower overhead and is therefore more cost effective
- Promote the dead horse into a management position
(PressZoom) - CHICAGO ( Dec. 27, 2005 ) - U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 5 has settled with Doboy Inc. of New Richmond, Wis., for an alleged violation of federal hazardous waste regulations. Doboy will pay a $52,246 penalty.
The company failed to determine, from 2000 to 2004, if waste filters from its wet paint spray booth were hazardous. EPA and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources inspected the Doboy package-making facility, 869 S. Knowles Ave., in March 2004. Its manufacturing process produces paint waste that requires disposal in an EPA-approved hazardous waste facility.
Under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, EPA controls hazardous waste from its production to final disposal.
Story source: Press Room Global News Service
From the beginning, there has been little doubt in the intelligence community that the outing of CIA officer Valerie Plame was part of a bigger story. That she was exposed in an attempt to discredit her husband, former ambassador Joseph Wilson, is clear, but the drive to demonize Wilson cannot reasonably be attributed only to revenge. Rather, her identification likely grew out of an attempt to cover up the forging of documents alleging that Iraq attempted to buy yellowcake uranium from Niger...
The timing, August 2002, was also propitious as the administration was intensifying its efforts to make the case for war...On Sept. 9, 2002, Ledeen set up a secret meeting between Pollari and Deputy National Security Adviser Hadley...On Jan. 28, 2003, over the objections of the CIA and State, the famous 16 words about Niger’s uranium were used in President Bush’s State of the Union address justifying an attack on Iraq: “The British government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa.”
...The investigation continues, but the campaign against this lone detractor suggests that the administration was concerned about something far weightier than his critical op-ed.
Read more: The American Conservative
The prophets of the Gospel of Greed are out street preaching again over at ontheborderline.com. In a long-winded article typical of the bdanielson "raging philoshopical debate" school of economics, spiritofnarcissis, (aka, spiritofpublicus,bildanielson,donttreadonme, and junkyarddog) cloaks himself in his religion of "Classical Liberalism" and invokes the Creator and Ten Commandments to implicitly justify his extremist views, or as he puts it "The Principles of Liberty".
In his unfathomable parable of the dairy farmer, viewed by the "countless individuals, who are readers of (his) website", spiritofnarcissis takes over 700 words and 3 paragraphs to expound upon the same message he always preaches. It can be summerized in 3 words...."Taxes are immoral".
BTW, The next time you're at the grocery store, see if you can negotiate a lower price for milk from the dairy farmer, or for that matter a cheaper gallon of gas from Exxon-Mobile.
(I would create link #252 here to Spirit's article, but if I did it would be redirected to pop-up about Socialists being insects and most likely plant a virus or worm on your computer, thanks to the internet trickery of the ontheborderline Admin.)
So in a nutshell, Spirit's argument is the typical Calvinist one.
The pecking order is God, me then the government. God gave me my money. Therefore, if the government taxes me, that's immoral.
(As an aside, just think of the implications of this "philosophy". We drink "government
( inspected and monitored)water. If you don't want to get dysentery from what you drink we'd all be buying bottled water )
and be driving on toll roads to get to the Wal-Mart Company Store to purchase it).
I'm not one run around quoting the Bible, chapter and verse .
However, since Spirit invoked the Creator and the Ten Commandments, let's do a little more investigation into the realm of religion to debunk the Gospel of Greed.
In Matthew 22:15 The Pharisees ask Jesus, "Is it lawful to pay taxes to Caesar, or not?".
Does Jesus say "Go forth thou home and guard thoust gallon of milk from Ceasar and the Romans"? Duh, no!!!!
He says, "Render therefore to Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and to God the things that are God's."
Clearly he's telling the faithful, "All taxation is immoral". Yeah, Right!
This voluminous little thesis of the Spirit is of course only Part I.
Perhaps in Part II, spiritofnarcissis could expound on this verse to justify the Gospel of Greed.
Matthew 16:24-26 24 26 For what doth it profit a man, if he gain the whole world and suffer the loss of his own soul? Or what exchange shall a man give for his soul?
Oh please Spirit, tell us the secret of life from the fountain of Ayn Rand and John Locke.
at 12/27/2005 Posted by Andy Rand
"The number of people in developing countries experiencing obesity and related diseases – such as diabetes, cancer and heart disease – has grown to 115 million now from essentially none two generations ago. These “diseases of affluence” occur as diets change away from high-quality foods, such as whole grains, fiber, and fruits and vegetables. By 2030, the diseases could become the primary killers of poor people around the world."
World Trends and Forecast
At The OnTheBorderLine.net Blog Site
I see OTBL admin Chris Kilber has provided us with his review of the New Richmond News coverage of the St. Croix County blog scene. I to think it was a good story. Editor Jeff Holmquist covered the local blog scene quite well. Unlike CK, I don't feel the need to bore you readers with any CYA spin or put any lipstick on the pig. My experiences as a reporter taught me that you can write a good story covering as many angles as time and space allow and there are still going to be complaints from those involved in the story.
I do have a couple of comments concerning Kilber's posting about the story titled: NR News.
"Another paragraph concerns screening. Not all comments are screened. Screening occurs only with new commenters. Only the first few are moderated. After that period people are more than welcome to comment. I will not allow my blog to get hijacked."
My experience commenting on OTBL agrees with what CK wrote. I was allowed to add comments to posts and debate and discuss the issues involved in the post -- up to a point. There gets to be a point where your comments bring up fact-based statistics and opinions that rationally provide a strong counter argument to the discussion. When this would happen, the comments to the post would be shut off -- especially if it started to look like there actually was another, legitimate side to the argument.
In addition, I was never allowed to do my own postings on OTBL. I tried to post some facts and figures that reflected positively on public education. CK said he would not publish this information because his was a right leaning blog and he wasn't going to allow it to be hijacked. Obviously, they have an agenda at OTBL and that is their right. However, they should at least be honest about it and cut the crap about open and honest debate. It doesn't happen there. Period!
"This blog has no links to Nelson's blog. I simply don't choose to belittle myself with childish and amateurish pictures, characterizations, and cartoons that are outright offensive to members of this blog and the publics sensibility."
He is free to link to information on this blog, if he chooses. It's a free, virtual-country. I brings me great joy to read that he simply doesn't "choose to belittle myself with childish and amateurish pictures, characterizations, and cartoons that are outright offensive to members of this blog and the publics sensibility."
Did you get a whiff of the hypocrisy in that last statement? Gee CK, we are sooooo sorry you might find some postings here "outright offensive" to members of your blog -- maybe I'm not wasting my time blogging the night away...
Let's see...OnTheBorderLine.net...isn't that the blog site in Hudson, Wisconsin that spends most of its time slandering any public official -- elected or employed -- who doesn't agree with their anti-tax, anti-community, anti-union, anti-public education fanaticism? Isn't OTBL the blog site that has published posts that attack the sons and daughters of those who don't happen to agree with them? Didn't I read posts over there calling Hudson "Nazi, Wisconsin?" The OTBL posts are littered with gutless anonymous slandering, tasteless characterizations of dedicated, self-sacrificing public officials and private citizens "that are outright offensive to members of this blog and the publics sensibility."
As you OTBL'ers polish the daggers of your self-righteous indignation, remember that you boys will always make better waitresses than customers. The reason is simple: you can dish it out, but you can't take it.
"There have been very few if any references to Nelson's blog or posts other that a gratuitous thank you now and then when he has attacked me in the paper. I have never attacked him in the paper and maybe have mentioned him but one or two times. On the other hand there are over 251 links on his site back to this site. It looks as if this blog did not exist, he would have nothing to write about."
I'm confused about the "attacked me in the paper" phrase. I've written letters to the editor pointing out the hypocrisy that echoes so loudly on his blog site. Since I not allowed to come over to his blog house and discuss the issues, I am simply using another forum to get my opinion out. CK is like many of the extremists on the right and left. If you disagree with their point of view and point out inconsistencies with their approach and/or arguments, they say you are attacking them. Freedom of speech is ok for them and not ok for those who disagree with them. Ditto for the extremists on the left. Being really liberal doesn't mean you are open-minded.
The reason CK has "never attacked" me in the paper is because he couldn't counter my arguments. OTBL'ers are the bullies who start crying when the targets of their attacks fight back. A good example is the bully in the movie "A Christmas Story."
"Nelson has many references to socialism, Marxism, anti-capitalism, centralized government and those are things that I simply don't agree with."
Always the one to play the "commie" card, CK pulls it out again. You will find discussion on all these political philosophies here. Much of it is to provide historical context to help make sure people understand the history of how we got to where we are today. I am a pragmatist. I look for the best aspects of what there is to offer and try to build from there. We are basically talking about local politics here and the OTBL'ers are trying to push a brand of political philosophy on the local governing bodies that I don't agree with. Granted, there are many aspects of their ideas that I agree with and many I don't. Their method of personal attack and bullying is what really detracts from the successful communication of their message. They came blame it on the teachers' union, the elected officials who don't agree with them, the Commies, etc., but their failure to communicate is their own fault.
The reason we have used so many links from this blog to the OTBL blog is to prove our point about the hypocritical statements and misinformation that is posted over there. A major part of our mission on this blog is to be a community "watch dog" on what goes on over there. We want to make sure that members of our local communities know what is cooking OnTheBorderLine.net. From the perspective here, their attacks on local newspapers is no different than our attacks on them.
If they can't take the heat, get out of the hot tub!
at 12/25/2005 Posted by JPN
"Santa Claus is, in literal terms, the anti-Christ..."
Ayn Rand Institute
(If you have time to waste and want to learn more about Ayn Rand, author of the "Virtue of Selfishness," go to the ontheborderline.net web site. She's their version of Mother Tereasa -- with a cat of nine tails.)
at 12/25/2005 Posted by Sunny Badger
"The individual, if left alone from birth, would remain primitive and beastlike in his thoughts and feelings to a degree that we can hardly conceive. The individual is what he is and has the significance that he has not so much in virtue of his individuality, but rather as a member of a great human community, which directs his material and spiritual existence from the cradle to the grave."
Ideas and Opinions
at 12/25/2005 Posted by JPN