Video: Shirl LaBarre speaks to an animated tree.

I present iron mine supporter Shirl LaBarre speaking to an animated tree who calls Mike Wiggins a “twig amongst our many branches” and calls Senator Bob Jauch “a joke”.

Bad River Tribal Chairman Mike Wiggins and Senator Bob Jauch can laugh off this tripe, so I don’t take as much umbrage on their behalf. In fact, I can laugh when Jauch’s photo is introduced with the sound of thunder.

However when she mocks the person who objected to the mine based on the fact that “water spoke” to them, she’s mocking the way some people approach our natural world with reverence. Particularly native peoples. Particularly the Bad River Tribe whose sacred rice beds would be ripped up by the proposed mine. Does she really think that if she’s speaking to a badly animated tree, it’s exactly the same as a spiritual relationship with water? I was prepared to assume she’s an idiot but all of these things have been explained for too long for her to be simply dumb to them. She has created a mean-spirited taunt with this video. I believe there is hatred in her willful ignorance and in the ignorance of the mine planners.

More background:

LaBarre has been a rabid an avid supporter of the proposed iron mine in the Penokee Hills.  You may have seen her testimony during the 12 hour public hearing last week. She whined that “The voices from down here [in Madison and Milwaukee] are heard more than ours” – which is a gross oversimplification of the matter when you consider that the strip-mine equipment factory Bucyrus is located in Milwaukee and they’ve been avidly pro-mine as well. Or when you pause to consider that CRG is based in Milwaukee and they funded a push to recall Senator Jauch after he opposed the 2012 mine bill.

Perhaps persuaded (or taken in) by her whinging, Isthmus recently treated her with kid gloves and gave her top billing in their piece Heated testimony heard from both sides at public hearing on Wisconsin mining bill.

Ms. LaBarre of Hayward, Wisconsin has made 3 attempts to win an Assembly seat and has lost all 3 times.  Her most recent loss was against the great Janet Bewley in 2010.   Ms. LaBarre attempted to recall Senator Bob Jauch in 2012 with the aid of Citizens for Responsible Government (CRG)  and a sister organization, CRG Northland.  That also failed.

You may remember that CRG played a big role in helping Scott Walker land his Milwaukee County Executive gig back in 2002.

When LaBarre and CRT filed papers to recall Senator Jauch, he said the following:

“Citizens for Responsible government is a Milwaukee fringe group that is more interested in political conquest than working for the common good. They helped Scott Walker win a recall election in Milwaukee and now they think they can spread their southeastern Wisconsin special interest money and extreme right wing agenda to other parts of the state.

They don’t care about jobs or responsible mining policy. The only contact they have had with my office has been harassing, costly and time consuming open record requests. They just want to send a message that they will threaten to recall a public official who happens to dare to disagree with them.

They don’t care about the north. They just want to make sure they own the politics and control the person who represents the north. They certainly don’t care about the truth.

It is obvious that CRG doesn’t care about good government. While the public yearns for bi-partisan cooperation this extreme group seems to condemn it. Their decision to amend the statement to include a possible recall against Republican Senator Dale Schultz shows that they are resentful of the actions of lawmakers who work across party lines to develop shared ideas and shared solutions to tough problems.

This special interest group has a right to initiate a recall petition effort but their intimidating tactics will not deter me in my efforts to work for responsible public policy and fight for the interests of the citizens I proudly serve. ”


2 thoughts on “Video: Shirl LaBarre speaks to an animated tree.

  1. The tree has no pro-mine arguments to make, he just bashes the mine opponents. I would expect something more profound from an ancient being with deep northwoods roots.

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