Recalls Pickle the Public, Raise the Dead, Make A Fool of a Professor

(These are a couple of the nasties from a WisconsinReporter article “Dems, GOP trade barbs as state reviews recall petitions”.)

When you need the people power to recall a Democratic Senator in Wisconsin. Who you gonna call? Not local Wisconsin volunteers. You won’t see 100’s of volunteers in a line circling the block the way they did on the first day to help with the Alberta Darling Recall.

You won’t see 100’s of volunteers trying to find a place to sit and stand as they jam offices across Wisconsin in an effort so popular and powerful that it exceeds the grassroots effort of Obama’s 2008 campaign.

Nope! You gotta call the recall for hire firm of Kennedy Enterprises out of Colorado.

“Kennedy Enterprises will work diligently to get people to sign your petition.”

From their site, these are their services:

  • Review all signatures collected by each circulator making a good faith effort to determine their validity
  • Provide weekly delivery of signatures and written reports on progress towards qualifying your inniative
  • Validation of each batch of signatures, utilizing at least a 10% random sampling
  • We guarantee that your negotiated contract rate will never increase for the duration of your campaign – more HERE 

On facebook I am hearing this same story from volunteers who are verifying signatures against Democratic Senators:“Amazing how many of the circulators were from out of state, such as FL, CO, MO and OK to name a few. Funny, we didn’t need that kind of help getting sigs to recall the Repubs!”

Volunteers from Wisconsin who are committed to recalling Republicans are already amazed that Republicans can not find their own local volunteer help. I think it just boggles the mind to think that when Republicans pay for this sort of help, they aren’t getting somebody decent.

According to ballotpedia, Kennedy Enterprises “circulators have associated themselves with benefits for the fire department [in a local Colorado effort] even though the fire department would not benefit nor is associated with the petition. The group works for Kennedy Enterprises. According to the Colorado Springs Gazette, Kennedy Enterprises was involved in an Indiana investigation in 2000 for placing the names of four people who had died on a petition drive to get then-Republican candidate Gary Bauer onto the state’s presidential primary ballot.” – More at

Well. People DO die. I thought, perhaps, there’s an explanation. Maybe in a big signature campaign, someone dies who was alive 1 week ago.”  But in the year 2000 Indiana case, the first dead person signature was caught by a clerk who knew that the man, Glen Barnett, had died 6 years previous.

As for the three other signatures: Arnold Moser had been dead 16 years, Lawrence Eberle had been dead for 23 years, and Hershel Engleman had been dead for 25 years. source

Did somebody say to old widows- “Go ahead and write down your dead husband’s name, while you’re at it?”

Here in Wisconsin, not only have dead people shown up on recall papers against Democrats, but booze has been exchanged for signatures.

(there’s audio at that link which is  just sad.)

Republicans contend that the discovery of Bill Pocan’s signature on the recall petition against Democratic state Sen. Bob Wirch is a stunt conducted by the Dems.

Bill Pocan was the father of state Rep. Mark Pocan and he died nearly two decades ago.

Smells of deeply hateful Republican bullshit to me.  It would be easier to turn me into a 911 truther than to convince me that any Dem would put Mark Pocan’s father’s name on such a document.

Interesting that the signature of Mark Pocan’s deceased father turns up on Wirch’s recall, it being the same recall effort that used booze shots to gain signatures.

Side note- a D.C. group called Fieldworks has consulted on the WI Democratic side. But the door-to-door manpower came from homegrown volunteers.

Oshkosh Professor Solicits for Recall Signatures and More in the Classroom

I am very much in support of Progressives and the Dems. However this action from “our side” irks me.

An Oshkosh professor,  Stephen Richards, takes 8 minutes out of class time subtly stumping for the recall of Hopper and yakking about how Republican politics will affect salaries and more  inside the classroom.  A student recorded the incident-  Audio Link Here

It’s skating closely to a conflict of interest. He says “there will be an 8% pay cut for all faculty and staff”. He’s speaking about something which impacts his compensation while at the same time, the audience listening is paying for his time there.

I would feel more comfortable with this if he asked the students to debate the topic – to challenge. But the students seem to have a passive role.

UW Oshkosh’s chancellor said the school would  “implement agreed-upon corrective action”.

Let’s say I were the student, I would simply speak up and ask the teacher to get back to work on what I’d paid him to do.

Are these students overly polite? Nobody told him he was out of line directly? They should speak up.

The Ed Schultz Town Hall, Barrymore Theater, Madison, Ground Zero in the Wisconsin Movement.

I joined 1,300 people in the Barrymore Theater last night. This crowd needed absolutely no assistance in warming up. While we waited for start, one audience member in the front in green face paint and a fright wig, stood up to lead the chant “This is what Democracy looks like”, while a cowbell waving member clanged along.

The crowd was noticeably over 30-years-old and mostly white–a demographic that fits with Madison, Wisconsin. However I feel qualified to state that the mix of cultures and styles brought to the Barrymore by the Ed Schultz crowd was uniquely non-elitist and non-cocktail swilling – as the downtown Madison crowd is characterized by the local GOP.

The format of the evening was billed as “town hall” with microphones at either side of he theater, and so I expected to hear hours of testimony. Instead, we heard a series of brief pointed speeches followed by a conversational exploration of the events that have transpired in Wisconsin since February 11 of 2011 when Scott Walker unveiled Wisconsin Act 10.

The crowd was stacked with those absolutely committed to jumping through all of the hoops required to get there – and thus  -the energy level they brought to the evening was red hot.

To guarantee entry into this event, hundreds waited in line first at noon, and then again later at 4:30PM, and following, they waited inside the theater. We listened first to John Nichols, Stu Levitan, Ruth Conniff, and a representative from PR Watch, and finally, we saw the man of the hour, Ed Schultz.

I didn’t count how many times Ed was thanked for Continue reading

Part 3. 150,000 Welcome the Dem14 Home: I laughed, I cried, I took pictures.

I have video. I have audio. I have photos. They all should be compiled into a multimedia schmorgasbord. But it takes so much time to wrestle with this stuff. Just thinking about it… I need to relax and have a beer. So, for the moment, here are a few photos and comments.

Part 1 and Part 2 say “100,000” Then I heard from Steve Hanson, 150,000. Do you know how many people went to this rally? I do know that I became really uncomfortable at one point as I got smooshed in a big pack that would only inch forward. In broad daylight outside.

I found this odd and frustrating, but then again, once in a while we’d lighten up and pick up in song. Musical packs of humanity. This actually describes normal life here since February 11th.

Darth Walker stood on the corner on the way to Barriques. He wouldn’t talk or change his facial expression, remaining “in character”. Here I laughed.

Judging by posture, profile, and mood, I’d guess these drummers were father and son, or at least relatives. They drummed together solemnly near the head of the Dem 14 parade. At this point, I did cry for a second.

Firefighters, firefighters, firefighters. I will never, ever be tired of firefighters.

Senator Jon Erpenbach getting flirted with, I think.

Senator Kathleen Vinehout. Believe it or not, given the hive effect here, and relative mayhem, this is not a terrible shot.

Can you guess where I was when I took this shot?

Yes. That is a rather large puppet. I was surprised too. I think I said something eloquent like, “Holy crap. Big puppet.” and fumbled for my camera. Continue reading