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Lakeland Times, Minocqua, Wisconsin
Friday, May 17, 2019 7:30 AM
Oneida County’s demand for an independent transit commission audit is welcome news, assuming the transit commission complies, or doesn’t try to be sneaky and play games with such an audit. (subscriber access)
  • Presidential candidates and the media keep telling people “it’s immoral” that a few rich people have so much more money than everyone else. 

    They talk as if it doesn’t matter what the rich did to get the money. Instead, the fact that they are rich is itself immoral. 
  • Time to get off the transit-go-round
    And around and around they go, the Oneida-Vilas Transit Commission and the Oneida County Board of Supervisors.

    Oneida County supervisors keep asking questions, the transit commission keeps resisting (though it claims otherwise), then Oneida County supervisors vote to allow them to borrow money anyway, even though they are not sure the transit operation is functional or even on the up-and-up.

    Then they do it all over again the very next year. What a carnival. (Subscriber Access)
  • Among the most disturbing moments during the last presidential election cycle occurred in September 2016, when a group of top intelligence officials briefed congressional leaders on the Kremlin’s aggressive hacking campaign.
  • British goon cops acting at the request of the United States government entered Ecuador’s embassy in London, dragged out WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange and prepared to ship him across the pond. After this event last month, most of the mainstream media reacted with spiteful glee about Assange’s predicament and relief that the Department of Justice had exercised self-restraint in its choice of charges.
  • Some blessed day, America will be rid of the Trump administration. But the “normalization” of misconduct by this president’s entourage will leave indelible stains — one of which will bear the name Jared Kushner.
  • One person’s guidance is another person’s law
    As we report in today’s edition, there’s a lot more at stake in the various challenges to laws passed in an Extraordinary Session of the Legislature last December, when lawmakers clipped the wings of the incoming governor and attorney general, than the legality of the session itself.

    In an attempt to save some power for this liberal duo, the lawsuits ostensibly challenge the constitutionality of the session, and that is important. As others have observed, if that session was illegal and the laws passed during it are null and void, then it’s not a far leap to think that all laws passed during any similar extraordinary sessions in the past are also null and void. (Subscriber Access)
  • Almost all of the economic discussion of late has been on the “wage gap” between men and women. A case in point: California Sen. Kamala Harris wants to create a federal bureaucracy that will ensure the government has more influence over workers’ pay than workers and employers themselves. This will open up a Pandora’s box for trial lawyers as employers find themselves deluged with lawsuits over pay “gaps” real and imagined.
  • Both Republican and Democratic politicians want government to “do more” to give parents paid time off. 
  • The guided missile destroyer USS John S. McCain, “Big Bad John,” was christened in 1992 in honor of the U.S. Navy’s first father-son duo of four-star admirals, “Slew” and Jack. On July 12, 2018, their son and grandson respectively, retired Navy captain and U.S. Sen. John S. McCain III was added to the official namesake of that Navy ship in a ceremony in Yokosuka, Japan. This American destroyer and its crew, as reported by The Wall Street Journal’s Rebecca Ballhaus and Gordon Lubold, were told by Navy and Air Force brass — in response to a directive from the White House — that during President Donald Trump’s Memorial Day weekend visit to Japan, the USS John S. McCain needs to be kept “out of sight.”
  • In Great Britain, there is such a thing known as the Shadow Cabinet, technically the Official Opposition Shadow Cabinet, wherein senior members of the out-of-power opposition party assume corresponding cabinet roles and scrutinize their peers who are actually in power.

    All in all, it’s jolly good fun and makes for great political theatre, but it can also serve a serious purpose — to formulate alternate policy positions that help the opposition party sharpen its message for the next election, and, most important, to shine a substantive light on what the government is doing in specific policy arenas. (Subscriber Access)
  • There’s no question many farmers are struggling this year with incomes down and bankruptcies up. Though some of the more dire reports on the farm sector recorded in the media are exaggerated, what is indisputable is that prices for major commodities such as corn are on a downward trend and are significantly lower than they were less than a decade ago, when prices were at or near record highs.
  • Walking quorum decision walks county further from good government
    In district attorney Michael Schiek’s opinion, four members of the Rhinelander city council and mayor Chris Frederickson did not violate the open meetings law when they composed, signed, and circulated a letter to council president George Kirby questioning his leadership, suggesting he resign, and promising a forthcoming and uncomfortable conversation about it all.
  • The Joint Finance Committee has started taking votes to craft the biennial state budget. Among the first votes the committee took was to remove non-fiscal policy, items that were non-starters for the legislature, and over a billion dollars in tax and fee increases. Full Medicaid expansion was included in the items that were voted to be removed.
  • Oneida County’s demand for an independent transit commission audit is welcome news, assuming the transit commission complies, or doesn’t try to be sneaky and play games with such an audit. (subscriber access)
  • When police charged New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft with soliciting prostitution, the press said the police rescued sex slaves. 
  • I recently took some flak from Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown for saying in a speech at the Heartland Institute several years ago that the “only place to live in the midwest is Chicago.” He was particularly upset that I took a tongue-in-cheek swipe at Cleveland and Cincinnati as “armpits.” This was supposedly evidence that I hate Ohio.
  • It was all just a joke. It was all said in jest. (subscriber access)
  • In Wisconsin, our natural resources are an essential part of who we are as a state. We value our outdoor traditions and the stewardship program has helped Wisconsinites preserve natural areas and expand access to recreational activities, all of which are beneficial.  
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