Sunday, April 30, 2006

Coming events

From Lynn C.: Two significant ballot issues will be put before Wisconsin voters this fall concerning reinstatement of the death penalty and restricting the legal interpretation of marriage. There is much debate that often deteriorates into argument. Waysmeet Quaker Center would like your help in sponsoring a local workshop to help people learn how to reestablish dialogue around these and other controversial subjects: Non-violent Dialogue Training with "LARA" (Listen, Affirm, Respond, Add) technique. If you are interested in participating in this training on Saturday, July 15, or Sunday, July 16, 2006, please email Lynn ASAP!

Upcoming events. More details at the calendar.

May 1 - Wisconsin Supreme Court Chief Justice, Shirley Abrahamson, 10 a.m., Viterbo Fine Arts Center. Free tickets to the event are available at the MC reception desk.

May 2 - Wisconsin Democracy Campaign demonstation at the State Capitol at 10 a.m. to protest Republican Assembly leaders blocking a full vote on SB1, bipartisan ethics reform legislation.

May 2 - Fundraiser for Peg Lautenschlager, 5 to 8 p.m., American Marine, La Crosse. For more information call 608 255-2006 or e-mail.

May 4 - Parker Palmer "The Courage to Teach", 4 p.m., San Damiano Chapel, Viterbo. Space is limited, and people may call Chris Sanger at 608-796-3070

May 5 - Parker Palmer, "Work as a Vocation", 8 a.m. and noon, Reinhart Center 107, Viterbo. Contact Rick Kyte at 608-796-3704 for details.

May 6 - Three Rivers Intertribal Pow-wow, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Mitchell Hall, UW-L

May 8 - Dan Kapanke and Wisconsin's energy future. A forum hosted by UW-L Progressives and WISPIRG at 7 p.m., Ward Room, Cartwright Center, UW-L

May 12 - Reception and fundraiser for progressive Democratic candidate for Wisconsin's 31st Senate district, Chris Danou, in La Crosse. Email to register or for more info.

Please email with calendar items!

Saturday, April 29, 2006

Weapons of Mass Deception

We finally had a chance to watch "Good Night and Good Luck." I assume some national news people have seen this film. Apparently they were not as moved as we were.

On May 15, Open Eye Documentary and Independent Film Society will show the film Weapons of Mass Deception, the Danny Schechter film about the media's cheerleading in the U.S. invasion and occupation of Iraq. The film will start at 7 p.m. and be shown at the La Crosse Public Library in a FREE and OPEN TO THE PUBLIC venue.

Most Americans get their news from local TV news. Now THAT'S a depressing thought considering local evening television "news" usually consists of two or three local stories, one mention (when time permits) of an issue of national importance (with no attempt to place the issue in any context or provide background) and at least one story about a cat who flew to France accidentally or a bird that can play happy birthday on the piano.

We need more good information and we need it now. This web site and the links we provide is one small voice. We need a lot more.

Friday, April 28, 2006

What did you expect?

The Wisconsin Democracy Campaign has been reporting daily on the soap opera going on in the State Assembly. A bi-partisan campaign ethics reform bill, SB 1, has passed the Senate and has the Governor's nod. But the Assembly leadership, including Mike Huebsch of West Salem have just pulled the football once again. Here's the latest from the WDC:

"After briefly toying with scheduling a vote on Senate Bill 1, the Democracy Campaign-backed bill that would toughen state ethics enforcement, Assembly Republicans voted behind closed doors yesterday not to bring up the legislation before the end of the legislative session next week.

"Representatives Terri McCormick of Appleton and Sheryl Albers of Reedsburg were the only Assembly Republicans to vote to bring the bill to the floor, sources who attended the meeting told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

"Several Assembly GOP members said they and their colleagues did not believe there needs to be tougher enforcement of ethics laws and they worried that the proposed new enforcement agency would have nothing to do but investigate state lawmakers. Under SB 1, the new agency would be responsible for administering elections, regulating lobbyists, enforcing campaign finance laws and the state ethics code, as well as having the new authority to investigate and prosecute wrongdoing.

"Other Republican lawmakers indicated that action on SB 1 would be seen as a slap at convicted ex-Speaker Scott Jensen, who is due to be sentenced in less than three weeks."

So, Mike Huebsch, who got nearly 75% of his campaign funds from out of district in 2004, has killed a good first step at cleaning up politics in Wisconsin. The WDC invites those who can make it to Madison on Tuesday, May 2 to assemble at the State Capitol (by the Fighting Bob statue) at 10 a.m. to demonstrate support for SB 1.

And, if you can't go there physically, please call Huebsch (608) 266-2401 or (888) 534-0094 or at home in West Salem at 786-3512 (or you can email him) and demand a vote on SB 1.