Thursday, January 31, 2013

BCD Member Editorial: Gun Safety

Fred Kramer sent a Letter to the Editor to the Burnett County Sentinel and it was published.

(click the link at the top of the pdf viewer to see it full sized, or use the zoom tool at the bottom of the pdf viewer to increase the size.)


Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Learn More About the Supreme Court Candidates

The primary will be February 19. 

Hear from the candidates themselves in the videos below.


Pat Roggensack (incumbent):




Vince Megna:




Ed Fallone:

Friday, January 25, 2013

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

BCD Member Editorial: Mining

Merri Ann and Jose Gonzalez sent the following emails concerning the mining bill.
I am not in favor of senate bill #1. I was not in favor of it when it was introduced last time either. I drink the water that comes directly out of the ground, and I live in the North Western portion of the state. I have been to the Penokee hills and am disenchanted that the Bad River Band has been so dismissed concerning this bill. I am disgusted that the Northern part of our beautiful state is disregarded in consideration of this bill. We have no means to go to the capital to voice our opinion on the one lone day where our voices could be heard. I do not want to drink mercury, lead or arsenic, nor do I want to see acid run off because sulfer has been breached during the mining process. We should not have to trust Gogebic Taconite's facts and figures. This bill was authorless last time and we were well aware that Gogebic taconite had written the bill. HOG tying the DNR in terms of fines, or restoration processes that were in place is the most dispicable part of this bill. Allowing outside mining companies to rape our landscape in the name of a handfull of jobs is disgusting and the people perpetrating this sneaky underhanded method of operation should be ashamed. I vote NO on senate bill #1. We are husband and wife for 46 years, we have the same email address, and we both feel the same way about this issue.
Jose Angel Gonzalez and
Merri Ann Gonzalez



We are asking that this email be considered part of the testimony of the official record concerning senate bill #1. We are not in favor of senate bill #1. We were not in favor of it when it was introduced last time either. We moved to this state from Illinois 7 years ago to appreciate the wildlife especially the presence of wolves, but mostly because of the clean air, and clean clear water that comes right out of the ground as is evidenced by the lab results from having our well tested when we first moved here. We drink the water that comes directly out of the ground, and live in the North Western portion of the state. We have been to the Penokee hills and are disenchanted that the Bad River Band has been so dismissed and disrespected concerning this bill. We are disgusted that the Northern part of our beautiful state is disregarded in consideration of this bill. We have no means to go to the capital to voice our opinion on the one lone day where our voices could be heard. We do not want to drink mercury, lead or arsenic, nor do we want to see acid run off because sulfer has been breached during the mining process. We should not have to trust Gogebic Taconite's facts and figures. This bill was authorless last time and we were well aware that Gogebic taconite had written the bill. HOG tying the DNR in terms of fines, or restoration processes that were in place is the most dispicable part of this bill. Allowing outside mining companies to rape our landscape in the name of a handfull of jobs (political payback for campaign contributions) is disgusting and the people perpetrating this sneaky underhanded method of operation should be ashamed. We vote NO on senate bill #1. We are husband and wife for 46 years, we have the same email address, and we both feel the same way about this issue. We both vote in every single election and will not forget who voted yes on this bill. 
Jose Angel Gonzalez and
Merri Ann Gonzalez



If you would like to contact one of your elected officials, you can find their contact information here on our blog at the Contact Your Elected Officials page.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Statement from Sen. Jauch on the Mining Bill Hearings

(click the link at the top of the pdf viewer to see it full sized, or use the zoom tool at the bottom of the pdf viewer to increase the size)

BCD Member Editorial: Mining

Gail Lando sent the following letter to Sen. Sheila Harsdorf and Rep. Severson:
I know that the mining bill is coming up for discussion tomorrow. I wish I could be in Madison at the hearings. I know how important jobs are for this area. I live here and I am part of a community of neighbors. But I have concerns that the residents of northwestern Wisconsin will not be the people who get the jobs. I am concerned about the lessening of environmental protections. All of us drink water and breathe air. In Minnesota the taconite industry dumped asbestos laden tailings into Lake Superior, contaminating the lake. Asbestos was spewed into the air and many miners were afflicted with cancer as a result. What safeguards does this bill put in place to prevent the mining companies from poisoning the air and water? The bill seems to lack mechanisms for citizen input concerning land use permits, and environmental concerns.
Please go slowly with the mining bill. The iron has been in the earth since the beginning of time and it is not going anywhere. I am not against mining, but I don't think that this bill is a good one. Please for the sake of the air breathers and water drinkers our region, vote no. 
Sincerely,
Gail Lando


If you would like to contact one of your elected officials, you can find their contact information here on our blog at the Contact Your Elected Officials page.

Speaker reminds Walker his policies are incompatible with MLK Jr's

Read more: http://host.madison.com/news/local/govt-and-politics/raw-video-speaker-criticizes-walker-at-mlk-day-event/vmix_e175d370-641c-11e2-9aef-0019bb2963f4.html#ixzz2Iji0RDtV

Friday, January 18, 2013

72 County Strategy

(click the link at the top of the pdf viewer to see it full sized, or use the zoom tool at the bottom of the pdf viewer to increase the size)

72 County Strategy by


Thoughts?

Thursday, January 17, 2013

BCD Member Editorial: NRA

Francis Peterson sent in a Letter to the Editor to the Burnett County Sentinel and it was published.  Great NRA commentary.

(click the link at the top of the pdf viewer to see it full sized, or use the zoom tool at the bottom of the pdf viewer to increase the size.)

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Statement from Senator Jauch on Introduction of GOP Mining Bill


Wednesday, January 16, 2013                                             
Contact: Senator Bob Jauch
608-266-3510
Statement from Senator Jauch on Introduction of GOP Mining Bill
Now that Republican legislative leaders have finally acknowledged that the mining legislation they’ve been promoting over the last year does exempt mining companies from meeting a variety of environmental standards, Governor Walker should endorse Senator Cullen’s bipartisan proposal, which maintains our state’s environmental standards and creates a fair and responsible permitting process.
While last year’s AB 426 was written by the company, this latest version of the GOP backed bill has clearly been written for the company, while Senator Cullen’s proposal was written in the public eye for the public interest. Senator Cullen’s proposal also comes much closer to matching the consensus reached between George Meyer and Tim Sullivan, a consensus called for by Governor Walker last year, than the proposal put forth by Republicans today.
Republican leaders have already acknowledged that their bill will be an invitation to litigation, in part because the environmental exemptions included in the bill are in conflict with the public trust doctrine that exists within our state’s constitution. Instead of creating jobs in Northern Wisconsin, the only jobs that will be created from the Republican bill will be the lawyers who spend 7 or 8 years arguing it in the courts.
We are all in agreement on the need for jobs throughout Wisconsin, but it seems as though Governor Walker and Republican legislative leadership are simply using the word “jobs” to cloak their unwillingness to talk about the flawed legislation and seek bipartisan solutions.
Once again, I call on Governor Walker to honor his pledge of bipartisanship and work with Senator Cullen, Senator Schultz and me because our bill provides the certainty in the permitting process he’s asked for while also maintaining the environmental protections he claims to wish to protect.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Event Reminder

This is the time of year we honor our members who have volunteered their time and energy to help make the party events and programs a success. This year the dinner will be held at the Siren Senior Center located at 23943 State Rd. 35 in Siren on Saturday, January 19. All democrats are welcome to attend this pot-luck dinner. We are expecting a big turnout that will provide the opportunity to mix with fellow democrats. Won’t it be fun to enjoy conversation with others who simply “get it?” The food service begins at 5:00 p.m. and we’ll be serving ham, green beans, mashed potatoes and your dish to share. The food will be served buffet-style. During the dinner we will enjoy music provided by Dragonfly with Doug Crane & Al Parson. At 6:00 p.m. the program will begin and continue until no later than 8:00 p.m. I’m looking forward to seeing all of you on the 19th.






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Saturday, January 12, 2013

BCD Member Editorial: Weapon Regulation

Will this letter get published in the newspaper?



Dear Editor:

Rebuttal to:
Dave Wilhelm
Guy McCarty
Bob Blake
Bill Kutz

From:
Merri Ann Gonzalez

You have all made my point. Your temper tantrums full of false information and vitriol absolutely riddled with far right-wing erroneous talking points (that we have all heard multiple times before) are proof that a middle ground solution has little hope of happening unless ALL people speak up. Common sense changes to our current gun laws are being called for by many people who own guns as well as those who don’t, by hunters and non hunters, by parents and grandparents. I have been around, and owned guns my whole life including an H&K 91 (uses 308’s), so your accusations of me NOT being a proponent of the second amendment are unfounded. (Liberal, Socialist, WOMAN advocate for separation of church and state and marriage equality....I am ok with those names)

Your statements concerning Australia are wrong and wrong. I know it is all over the internet, but that does not make it true. Here is a web site that might enlighten you as to Australia’s GUN violence, not simply “violent crime” because that statistic is misleading, and quotes only a fraction of the time frame since it was instituted.

Please don’t be TOO confused by the facts.
1. Since Australia has imposed a gun ban after their massacre, it has NOT happened again. http://www.slate.com/blogs/crime/2012/12/16/gun_control_after_connecticut_shooting_could_australia_s_laws_provide_a.html
2. GUN deaths have steadily declined since the buy back and ban. The statistics you referenced are of VIOLENT CRIME, not GUN DEATHS. Don’t want to read the whole Government report, fine, just read the summary. http://www.aic.gov.au/documents/A/8/4/%7BA84819A6-AC46-4A82-A049-841A3F3A9730%7Dti10.pdf

On the other hand, back home here:

31,755 GUN DEATHS in the USA during 2012.

While the NRA was discussing what can be done about the problem with V.P. Biden, yet another school shooting took place.

Do the DEAD CHILDREN NOT matter to you?

Merri Ann Gonzalez (Who still thinks we have some wiggle room for change here)

Monday, January 7, 2013

Chair Report - January 7, 2013



Greetings….I would like to take a moment to thank all of you for a great 2012 and we must now focus on 2013 to meet the continuing challenges we face as democrats. Your past efforts have not gone unnoticed and provide the Burnett County Democrats with a positive view looking forward. Let’s all recommit to a successful year. Thanks again for hanging in there.

Annual Recognition Dinner….This is the time of year we honor our members who have volunteered their time and energy to help make the party events and programs a success. This year the dinner will be held at the Siren Senior Center located at 23943 State Rd. 35 in Siren on Saturday, January 19. All democrats are welcome to attend this pot-luck dinner. We are expecting a big turnout that will provide the opportunity to mix with fellow democrats. Won’t it be fun to enjoy conversation with others who simply “get it?” The food service begins at 5:00 p.m. and we’ll be serving ham, green beans, mashed potatoes and your dish to share. The food will be served buffet-style. During the dinner we will enjoy music provided by Dragonfly with Doug Crane & Al Parson. At 6:00 p.m. the program will begin and continue until no later than 8:00 p.m. I’m looking forward to seeing all of you on the 19th

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Press Check


Our Chairman, Richard Costerisan, has written a critique of the editorial standards at one of our local newspapers, the Inter-County Leader. The incident that caught his attention began when The Leader published a letter “written” by Sam Jones of Siren.

From the Inter-County Leader, 12/19/12, Sam Jones writes:
As each state reports their final election details, the evidence of voter fraud is astounding. Massive voter fraud is being reported in areas of Ohio and Florida, with Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Virginia, all deploying personnel to investigate election results.

He then goes on to cite election data and conspiracy laden conclusions directly from the putrid corner of the internet where the fringe, right-wing, hate sites reside. Sam Jones’ stream of misinformation inspired Polk County Democrats Chairman Jeff Peterson to send his own letter.

From the Inter-County Leader, 12/26/12, Jeff Peterson writes:
After seeing Sam Jones’s letter titled Election Fraud in last week’s Leader, I sat down to research the Web site he listed as a source, american3rdposition.com and was a little shocked by what I saw. On a hunch I went to the Web site of the Southern Poverty Law Center, an organization that tracks hate groups, and here’s what they say about AmericanThird Position: “The American Third Position is a political party initially established by racist Southern California skinheads that aims to deport immigrants and return the United States to white rule. The Group is now led by to coterie of prominent white nationalists …”

Jeff then goes on to debunk the false conclusions Sam tried to draw from the election results. Later in Jeff’s letter he gets to the heart of the misinformation problem.  Jeff writes:
I then skipped down in Jones’ letter to the bullet that says “In Ohio County, Obama won by 108 percent of the total number of eligible voters.” Turns out there is no Ohio County in Ohio (there’s one in Kentucky), so I conclude that Jones must have been referring to Wood County, Ohio, home of Bowling Green College and lots of student voters. Politifact.com investigated the 108 percent claim for Wood County and rated it a “pants on fire” lie.
I was curious about Jones’ erroneous reference to Ohio County, so decided to Google that sentence from his letter, and to my great surprise got 474 hits with the exact same working. Not only that, but the exact same opening paragraph as well. And the exact same closing paragraph. In fact, the letter that Sam Jones signed his name to was copied verbatim from one of any number of right-wing Web sites. He didn't bother to change even one word.

Jeff Peterson researched his information with credible sources. It appears Sam Jones copy/pasted his letter. Probably one of those urban-myth type, chain-letter emails the marginal and gullible so often believe and forward on infinitum until a credible outlet debunks the hell out it.

Once Sam’s naivety was exposed he lashed out against Jeff, and began screeching about socialism, Nazis, communism and WWII. Only two letters to Godwin’s Law!

From the Inter-County Leader, 1/2/13, Sam writes:
When I went to school in Frederic, a teacher would have been fired if he/she even let anyone know anything about their politics. Students have a special relationship with their teachers, making them easy to brainwash, and then re-enforcing it with political letters to the editor makes it even more damaging. A public schoolteacher is a highly respected public servant which has to be nonpartisan. After two generations of Democratic teachers it is understandable why the Luck area has so may radical Democrats. You can be either a teacher or a politician but not both.
I see the county that 407,000 of us died for in World War II falling into socialist hands, declining into a Third World country. Although I was a permanently disabled World War II veteran, I was also involved in the Kennedy/Johnson war in Vietnam. Hopefully, the country will wake up before it is gone completely and the dead that saved it can rest in peace. I have also searched through both Democratic and Republican propaganda and concluded that only the Republicans can save our country. We can’t tolerate brainwashing schools because we know it leads to socialism, Nazism or communism. Those of us that served out country know what that means.


This brings us to Richard Costerisan’s response to these letters, particularly The Leader's journalistic responsibility to truth, even on the editorial page.

A Responsible Press?

I was amazed, once again, by the unprofessional and inappropriate editorial that appeared in the January 3, 2013 edition of the Inter-County Leader. I am referring to the editorial comment on page 9 entitled “Democratic Podium” submitted by Sam Jones, Siren. Sam’s opinion did not work as a rebuttal to Jeff Peterson’s opinion in the December 26 edition. Instead, it only served as a personal attack directed at Jeff and his political affiliation. This type of editorial negligence is common on the Leader editorial page and is a disservice to the newspaper and its readers. As a reader, I wonder why the editor allows this type of behavior to continue on its pages. Is it readership? Is it profit driven? Perhaps the newspaper is promoting a conservative agenda and is attempting to allow journalistic intimidation within its pages. Whatever, it’s wrong!

I would like to believe the Leader is interested in printing opinions that have some basis in fact and those issues serve a purpose toward moving public debate on matters important to the readers. Jeff Peterson clearly demonstrated the article submitted by Sam Jones in the December 19 edition was not factual. It was based on prejudices and opinions not supported by any truths found in the common understanding of the public domain. Simply said, it was clear the writer had a limited and prejudiced view of the political arena in this country. Jeff poignantly demonstrated this in his rebuttal.

I hope the Leader editor would show some respect for his readers by refusing to print continuing opinions rife with misinformation and personal accusations. Then, refuse to print a second article written by this person that simply attacks anyone that doesn't agree with him. Unfortunately, the editor has committed this journalistic crime all too often. I hope this letter will help him rethink his responsibility to the readers he serves.

Richard Costerisan
PO Box 545
Siren, WI 54872




I also would like to take this opportunity to respond to Sam’s letter attacking Jeff.

First, teachers do not give up their right to voice political opinions when they accept the job. Second, Jeff wasn't expressing his political opinion in front of a classroom, he wrote a letter to a local newspaper. Third, children are not being brainwashed by the editorial page of the newspaper. Seriously, how may kids read the editorial page of the newspaper? Forth, I’d love to know how much Sam Jones is enjoying the 100% socialized health care he’s entitled to from the VA as a permanently disabled veteran. Fifth, as a veteran myself, I’m sick and tired of the veterans out on the radicalized ends of the political spectrum attempting to use their veteran status to lend credibility to being wrong. -- Emily Nehring, Site Administrator