Saturday, December 31, 2011

We Wish You the Merriest

Happy New Year, everyone.  If you go out tonight, have a designated driver.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Proof that Chris Rickert is Completely Out of Touch

I don't usually read the Wisconsin State Journal columns of professional apologist Chris Rickert anymore, unless a particular headline sparks my curiosity. When I do read them, they usually leave me scratching my head and wondering about the alternate universe in which he lives. But this one takes the cake. The headline online is different than the one in yesterday's print edition, which said something like Nail's Tales Should Stay Where It Is.
"Nails'" reminds us that art is to be pondered and maybe even reviled - and maybe reviled for reasons we don't understand.

I think Rickert may be projecting his opinion of his own columns.  Most of the time, it seems like his point on almost any issue boils down to "I don't understand why people who have paid more attention to this issue than I have are so upset about it; they should just accept the status quo like I do."  I don't find that particularly thought-provoking or controversial; I just find it eye-rollingly irrelevant.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Little Drummer Boy

Reminding us that the best Christmas gifts are those of our time and talents, here is the late, great Johnny Cash.

Merry Christmas everyone, and Happy Festivus.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Winter Wonderland

Most of December was unusually snowless, but this morning Madison awoke to a sea of white. It will likely be gone by Saturday, but at least there will be a white Hanukkah.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Rest In Peace, Vaclav Havel

Yesterday, a great man passed away at the age of 75.  Vaclav Havel went from political prisoner to President and helped the Czech Republic become a stable modern democracy.  He will be forever linked with the Velvet Revolution, one of several such transformations that swept the former Soviet bloc in 1989.

For those of us old enough to remember, here is Jesus Jones' musical diary of that time.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Taxpayers won't pay for Edgewater project

This is an instance where Mayor Soglin has delivered more than he promised. During the campaign, he said it wasn't possible to stop the Edgewater TIF handout, but he would ensure that nothing similar ever happened again.

However, the developer's own failure to deliver has doomed the project. All along, Dunn relied on special favors and exceptions to the rules (both TIF and shoreline zoning) while withholding required details about the project.  Now they are threatening to sue.

Soglin said Dunn would have "a real tall mountain to climb" to win a suit because the developer has failed to produce a detailed financial plan and a construction contract, two essential pieces of paperwork for any city financing deal.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Monday, December 5, 2011

Congratulations to the NFC North Division Champions

Aaron Rodgers has led the Packers to clinch the NFC North Division.  I always knew he had it in him.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Quote of the Day

We’ve had it backward for the last 30 years. Rich businesspeople like me don’t create jobs. Middle-class consumers do, and when they thrive, U.S. businesses grow and profit. That’s why taxing the rich to pay for investments that benefit all is a great deal for both the middle class and the rich. 

So let’s give a break to the true job creators. Let’s tax the rich like we once did and use that money to spur growth by putting purchasing power back in the hands of the middle class. And let’s remember that capitalists without customers are out of business.
Venture capitalist Nick Hanauer, who also said "An ordinary middle-class consumer is far more of a job creator than I ever have been or ever will be."

That's the same argument I tried to make a month and a half ago. Maybe it will have more weight coming from one of the 1%.