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Daily Bread

Daily Bread for 6.13.24: Troupis’s Suspension (Criminal Defendants Don’t Belong on Judicial Advisory Panels)

Good morning.

Thursday in Whitewater will be partly sunny with a high of 86. Sunrise is 5:15 and sunset 8:34 for 15h 19m 01s of daytime. The moon is a waxing crescent with 43.7 percent of its visible disk illuminated.

Whitewater’s Board of Review meets at 4 PM.

On this day in 1777,  Gilbert du Motier, Marquis de Lafayette, lands near Charleston, South Carolina, to help the Continental Congress train its army.


Scott Bauer reports Former Trump attorney in Wisconsin suspended from state judicial ethics panel:

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The Wisconsin Supreme Court on Tuesday suspended former President Donald Trump’s Wisconsin lawyer from a state judicial ethics panel a week after he was charged with a felony for his role in a 2020 fake electors scheme.

Liberal advocates have been calling for Jim Troupis to step down from the Judicial Conduct Advisory Committee, saying he is unsuitable due to his role advising the Republicans who attempted to cast Wisconsin’s electoral votes for Trump after he lost the 2020 election in the state to Democrat Joe Biden.

Troupis, a former judge, Kenneth Chesebro, another Trump attorney, and former Trump aide Mike Roman were all charged by state Attorney General Josh Kaul last week for their role in the fake electors plot.

Troupis did not return a voicemail or text message seeking comment Tuesday.

The Wisconsin Supreme Court, in its order, notified Troupis and the judicial advisory committee that he was “temporarily suspended” from serving on the panel effective immediately. The court did not give a reason for the suspension. 

(In March 2023, the former conservative majority on the Wisconsin Supreme Court reappointed Troupis to a second term despite awareness and objections at the time of his role in the fraudulent electors’ scheme. There was no requirement in 2023 that he be reappointed, and as there were many other suitable candidates for appointment, he should not have been given a second term.)

Now, almost a year and a half later, it should not — and among the ethically-minded people has not been — merely the center-left demanding Troupis’s suspension. Pending the outcome of criminal proceedings against him, he is unsuited to serve actively on the advisory committee. Should he be convicted, he is unsuited to remain a member.

The Wisconsin Supreme Court did not state a reason for Troupis’s suspension, as they might have, but then again, the reason should be apparent.


A glass that builds and heals itself:

Daily Bread for 6.12.24: National Inflation Slows

Good morning.

Wednesday in Whitewater will be partly sunny with a high of 87. Sunrise is 5:15 and sunset 8:34 for 15h 18m 33s of daytime. The moon is a waxing crescent with 34.5 percent of its visible disk illuminated.

Whitewater’s Landmarks Commission meets at 6 PM.

On this day in 1889, the worst tornado disaster in Wisconsin history occurs:

The storm virtually leveled New Richmond on the day the Gollmar Brothers Circus came to town. At the time, New Richmond was a prosperous town of 2500 people and one of the most scenic places in Wisconsin. On the day of the storm, the streets were filled with residents and tourists waiting for the afternoon circus parade. Shortly after the circus ended, the tornado passed through the very center of town, completely leveling buildings. Over 300 buildings were damaged or destroyed. Massive amounts of flying debris resulted in multiple deaths in at least 26 different families. In all, the storm claimed 117 lives and caused 150 injuries.

On this day in 1944, American paratroopers of the 101st Airborne Division secure the town of CarentanNormandy, France.


Good news on national inflation, as Jeff Cox reports Inflation slows in May, with consumer prices up 3.3% from a year ago:

The consumer price index showed no increase in May as inflation slightly loosened its stubborn grip on the U.S. economy, the Labor Department reported Wednesday.

The CPI, a broad inflation gauge that measures a basket of goods and services costs across the U.S. economy, held flat on the month though it increased 3.3% from a year ago, according to the department’s Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Economists surveyed by Dow Jones had been looking for a 0.1% monthly gain and a 3.4% annual rate.

Excluding volatile food and energy prices, core CPI increased 0.2% on the month and 3.4% from a year ago, compared with respective estimates of 0.3% and 3.5%.

….

Following the report, stock market futures pushed higher while Treasury yields slid.

Though the top-line inflation numbers were lower for both the all-items and core measures, shelter inflation increased 0.4% on the month and was up 5.4% from a year ago. Housing-related numbers have been a sticking point in the Federal Reserve’s inflation battle and make up a heavy share of the CPI weighting.

(Emphasis added.)

The cost of shelter continues to increase nationally, forcing the many to pay more of their income to the few for a place to live.


What are Joro spiders and are they dangerous?:

Daily Bread for 6.11.24: A Bipartisan Vote for Wisconsin Elections Commission Chairperson

Good morning.

Tuesday in Whitewater will be partly cloudy with a high of 74. Sunrise is 5:15 and sunset 8:33 for 15h 18m 02s of daytime. The moon is a waxing crescent with 25.8 percent of its visible disk illuminated.

Whitewater’s Community Involvement and Cable TV Commission meets at 5 PM and the Public Works Committee meets at 6 PM.

 On this day in 1935,  inventor Edwin Armstrong gives the first public demonstration of FM broadcasting in the United States at Alpine, New Jersey:

In June 1936, Armstrong gave a formal presentation of his new system at the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) headquarters. For comparison, he played a jazz record using a conventional AM radio, then switched to an FM transmission. A United Press correspondent was present, and recounted in a wire service report that: “if the audience of 500 engineers had shut their eyes they would have believed the jazz band was in the same room. There were no extraneous sounds.” Moreover, “Several engineers said after the demonstration that they consider Dr. Armstrong’s invention one of the most important radio developments since the first earphone crystal sets were introduced.” Armstrong was quoted as saying he could “visualize a time not far distant when the use of ultra-high frequency wave bands will play the leading role in all broadcasting”, although the article noted that “A switchover to the ultra-high frequency system would mean the junking of present broadcasting equipment and present receivers in homes, eventually causing the expenditure of billions of dollars.”


In a state and nation seldom bipartisan, Wisconsin saw a bipartisan vote yesterday: Bipartisan Wisconsin Elections Commission unanimously chooses Democrat as chair for 2 years. Scott Bauer reports:

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The same Democrat who led the Wisconsin Elections Commission during the contested 2020 presidential election will be back in the helm in the swing state this year after being unanimously elected Monday by the bipartisan panel.

Ann Jacobs was the only commission member nominated to serve as chair, reprising the role she had from 2020 to 2022. The unanimous vote included one from a Republican commissioner who attempted to cast Wisconsin’s electoral votes for Donald Trump in 2020 even though he lost the state.

The six-member commission administers and enforces Wisconsin election laws, but elections are run locally by more than 1,800 clerks in towns, villages, cities and counties. State law requires that the chair of the commission alternate between a Republican and a Democrat every two years.

Two key departures from normal yet persist on the commission (assuming anyone can define normal, let alone recall when that condition last held sway).

First, Bob Spindell remains a WISGOP commissioner. Yet, he is one of ten fraudulent presidential electors who admitted under a civil settlement that their actions were part of an attempt to overturn wrongfully the 2020 presidential election results. Spindell wouldn’t belong on the elections board of the smallest hamlet on the planet, let alone this state’s elections commission.

Second, Wisconsin’s elections administrator, Meagan Wolfe, remains a holdover employee in her full-time state position. A well-ordered politics would not have holdovers, as the appointments & confirmation process would not be intermittent.


The joy of snacking:

Daily Bread for 6.10.24: So Is This a Political Crisis for Robin Vos?

Good morning.

Monday in Whitewater will be sunny with a high of 69. Sunrise is 5:15 and sunset 8:33 for 15h 17m 25s of daytime. The moon is a waxing crescent with 17.5 percent of its visible disk illuminated.

Whitewater’s Planning & Architectural Review Commission meets at 6 PM.

 On this day in 1999,  NATO suspends its airstrikes after Slobodan Milosevic agrees to withdraw Serbian forces from Kosovo.


It’s possible that Speaker Robin Vos is “in the flight of his life” over a possible recall and then November election campaign, as emeritus professor at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Mordecai Lee contends. See Rich Kremer ‘The fight for his life’: Vos faces 2 challengers in district race who helped with ongoing recall (‘A Republican primary challenger and independent candidate facing off against longtime Assembly Speaker Robin Vos assisted with second effort to remove him from office’).

Kremer reports:

The Wisconsin Elections Committee is currently vetting more than 9,000 signatures submitted by organizers of the Racine Recall Committee. Committee members are confident they’ll have enough signatures to trigger a recall election, despite falling short with their first attempt earlier this year. 

A Friday press release from the Racine Recall Committee says the group is “extremely confident” it has enough signatures. A statement from the Vos-aligned group Wisconsinites for Liberty Fund posted by WisPolitics last week claims recall organizers have “once again fallen woefully short on collecting the required number of signatures.”

On Friday afternoon, Vos filed a challenge to the Racine Recall committee’s petition, claiming that organizers initiated it in the wrong Assembly District. 

A press release from Vos’ campaign called the second recall attempt a failure. It claims organizers allowed hundreds of people to sign recall petitions multiple times and states 2,000 signatures were collected from outside Vos’ old 63rd Assembly District. 

Vos is now running in the new 33rd Assembly District, where he will face up to three challengers, two of them people who have helped the latest recall effort.

They include Andrew Cegielski of East Troy, who plans to run against Vos in the Republican primary, Kelly Clark of Sturtevant, who plans to run in the general election as an Independent, and Democrat Alan Kupsik of Lake Geneva.

See also FREE WHITEWATER’s dedicated Speaker Vos category.

So is this a political crisis for Robin Vos? At the least, one can say that Vos’s tenure has been a political crisis for others.

There are probably a few people — including in Whitewater — who are obtuse enough to think that dropping Vos’s name still reflects well on them. If doing so ever reflected well on those so inclined, it’s been so long that only historians and archeologists can mark that ancient time.

Embed from Getty Images

World’s first drone delivery on Mount Everest a success:

Daily Bread for 6.9.24: Ron Johnson

Good morning.

Sunday in Whitewater will be sunny with a high of 73. Sunrise is 5:16 and sunset 8:32 for 15h 16m 46s of daytime. The moon is a waxing crescent with 10.5 percent of its visible disk illuminated.

 On this day in 1954, Joseph N. Welch, special counsel for the United States Army, lashes out at Senator Joseph McCarthy during the Army–McCarthy hearings, giving McCarthy the famous rebuke, “You’ve done enough. Have you no sense of decency, sir, at long last? Have you left no sense of decency?”


While these years since 2016 have ruined some (Gableman comes to mind), and left others in the past (Walker), a third type has come through better in these worse times. Charlie Sykes is of that last type: an ideological transformation that has shown him to be more principled in less principled times.

Sykes writes of Ron Jonnson, Wisconsin’s ventriloquist dummy of conspiracy theories, in Sen. Ron Johnson’s claim he knew nothing about a fake electors plot isn’t believable (‘Text messages show that Johnson and his staff were told explicitly about the plot to deliver the fake electoral votes to Washington’):

On Tuesday, Wisconsin’s Department of Justice brought felony forgery charges against one of the architects of the plan, Kenneth Chesebro. That attorney already pleaded guilty in Georgia to participating in the illegal attempt in that state to overturn the election. Wisconsin prosecutors also charged Trump aide Mike Roman and attorney Jim Troupis, who represented Trump in Wisconsin during the 2020 election. Wisconsin is the fifth state to bring criminal charges in connection with the conspiracy to overturn Trump’s defeat.

The evidence supporting the Wisconsin charges is especially robust, given the volume of communications — text messages, emails, photos, videos and social media posts — that were gathered as part of an earlier civil lawsuit that unearthed more than 1,400 pages of documents related to the conspiracy. (That case was settled after the fake electors admitted they had signed a document that was “used as part of an attempt to improperly overturn the 2020 presidential election results.”)

….

Johnson initially said he was “basically unaware” of what was going on, dismissing the attempted handoff of the fake certificates as a “staff-to-staff exchange.” Later, however, he admitted that his staff had been in touch with Rep. Mike Kelly, R-Pa., “about how Kelly’s office could get us the electors because they had it.”

Even so, he continued to insist that he “had no idea that there was an alternate slate of electors.” Referring to Troupis, Johnson said, “He was asking me to deliver some documents.” He said he didn’t know the document Troupis wanted him to hand off was a fake slate of Trump electors from his home state. What did he think the document could have been, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel asked. Responded Johnson: “I couldn’t have cared less. I’m asked by the attorney for the president of the United States to deliver something to the vice president on that day.”

But documents released as part of the civil lawsuit in March seemed to blow a hole in Johnson’s story. In a Dec. 8, 2020, email to Chesebro, Troupis wrote that he “spoke with Senator Johnson late last night about the Pence angle at the end.” Troupis wrote, “Just wanted to take his temperature.”

….

The documents also show that Troupis texted Johnson personally on Jan. 6, explicitly mentioning the electors: “We need to get a document on the Wisconsin electors to you for the VP immediately.” He added, “Is there a staff person I can talk to immediately.”

That same day, Troupis texted Chesebro, confirming that he had been “on the phone with Mike Roman and Senator Johnson’s COS [chief of staff] to get an original copy of Wi slate to VP.”

Of all the many influences of these last years on the men and women of Wisconsin, one can easily say that Sykes rose, while Johnson descended, to the occasion.

See also Wisconsin Attorney General Files Criminal Charges over Fraudulent Presidential Elector Scheme,  Wisconsin Native Kenneth Chesebro’s January 6th Instigation, and Wisconsin & Arizona Investigations into Fraudulent 2020 Presidential Electors, and the 6.4.24 criminal complaint, below:

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In Paris, a 10.5-mile trail plotted out by American Boy Scout troop leaders:

In Paris, among all of the history and glamour, one can find something completely unexpected: a 10.5-mile trail plotted out by American Boy Scout troop leaders. The trail highlights sites of importance to both the French and Americans. Ed O’Keefe brings us along to explore this connection dating back to Benjamin Franklin.

Daily Bread for 6.8.24: Are Vertical Farms the Future of Agriculture?

Good morning.

Saturday in Whitewater will be cloudy with afternoon showers and a high of 70. Sunrise is 5:16 and sunset 8:32 for 15h 16m 03s of daytime. The moon is a waxing crescent with 4.7 percent of its visible disk illuminated.

On this day in 789,  three Viking ships from Hordaland (in modern Norway) landed on the Isle of Portland on the southern coast of Wessex, the beginning of Norse activity in the British Isles.

Just after midnight on this day in 1984, about 90 percent of the town of Barneveld was destroyed. Ninety-three homes were flattened, and 64 were damaged. Seventeen of 18 businesses and public buildings in the village were obliterated. This tornado was rated an F5 on the Fujita Scale, the highest rating a tornado can achieve.


Are Vertical Farms the Future of Agriculture?:

Have you ever wondered how in-flight meals are made or where the ingredients come from? ? Welcome to the innovative world of vertical farming with an inside look into the largest vertical farm in Dubai that supplies fresh greens to @emirates. Filmed in the heart of Dubai, we dive into these cutting-edge farming techniques that are revolutionizing agriculture in the region. This is how they utilize advanced technology to grow sustainable, pesticide-free produce, ensuring a constant supply of fresh greens to Emirates and beyond.

Mealtime:

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Daily Bread for 6.7.24: National Job & Wage Growth Robust in May

Good morning.

Friday in Whitewater will be windy with a high of 75. Sunrise is 5:16 and sunset 8:31 for 15h 15m 15s of daytime. The moon is a waxing crescent with 1.5 percent of its visible disk illuminated.

On this day in 1776,  Richard Henry Lee presents the “Lee Resolution” to the Continental Congress:

Resolved, That these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States, that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain is, and ought to be, totally dissolved.

That it is expedient forthwith to take the most effectual measures for forming foreign Alliances.

That a plan of confederation be prepared and transmitted to the respective Colonies for their consideration and approbation.


Lindsay Dunsmuir reports US job gains blow past expectations, wage growth quickens:

June 7 (Reuters) – The U.S. economy created far more jobs than expected in May and annual wage growth reaccelerated, underscoring the resilience of the labor market and reducing the likelihood the Federal Reserve will be able to start rate cuts in September.
The Labor Department’s closely watched employment report on Friday also showed the unemployment rate ticked up to 4.0% from 3.9% in April, reaching a symbolic threshold below which the jobless rate had previously held for 27 straight months.

The unexpectedly strong report made plain that while the labor market has softened around the edges in recent months, its still-solid performance is set to keep the Fed on the sidelines and taking its time in deciding when to begin lowering borrowing costs.
Financial markets slashed the odds of a September rate cut, reducing the probability to about 55% from about 70% before the report, based on rate futures contracts.

These are national figures; they are not local measures of progress. Whitewater’s old guard wasted a generation by which our city has lagged our nation.

These types would like to tell the city they have answers for the next generation’s needs.

Admittedly, they’re right — they do have answers for the next generation: answers as wrong and counter-productive as the ones they’ve been giving for decades. (If they’d advised and guided correctly, longtime residents now in need wouldn’t be bartering for diapers and small appliances on social media.) If these men have but one skill, it hasn’t been in getting conditions right, but instead in shameless self-promotion while they’ve been getting conditions wrong.

Whitewater will see widespread prosperity when she moves away from her stultifying past.


Greater Sage-Grouse:

Greater Sage-Grouse are one of the most iconic birds of the American West. Each spring across the sagebrush steppe, they gather at mating grounds, called leks. There, males perform incredible courtship displays for onlooking females. Experience the magic of sage-grouse from inside a photography blind on a lek in southern Wyoming with Audubon Rockies’ communications manager, Evan Barrientos.

Daily Bread for 6.6.24: D-Day, Eighty Years On

Good morning.

Thursday in Whitewater will be sunny with a high of 70. Sunrise is 5:16 and sunset 8:31 for 15h 14m 24s of daytime. The moon is new with none of its visible disk illuminated.

Whitewater’s Alcohol Licensing Committee meets at 5:30 PM.

On this day in 1944, Operation Overlord, the Allied invasion of Normandy, begins with the execution of Operation Neptune—commonly referred to as D-Day—the largest seaborne invasion in history. Nearly 160,000 Allied troops cross the English Channel with about 5,000 landing and assault craft, 289 escort vessels, and 277 minesweepers participating. By the end of the day, the Allies would land on five invasion beaches and were pushing inland.



President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s D-Day Prayer, Broadcast on June 6, 1944:

Daily Bread for 6.5.24: Wisconsin Attorney General Files Criminal Charges over Fraudulent Presidential Elector Scheme

Good morning.

Wednesday in Whitewater will see partly sunny afternoon conditions with a high of 77. Sunrise is 5:16 and sunset 8:30 for 15h 13m 29s of daytime. The moon is a waning crescent with 1.1 percent of its visible disk illuminated.

On this day in 1883, William Horlick patents the first powdered milk in the world. He named his new product, intended to be used as a health food for infants, “Malted Milk.” Horlick’s product went on to be used as a staple in fountain drinks as well as survival provisions. Malted milk was even included in explorations undertaken by Robert Peary, Roald Amundsen, and Richard Byrd.

On this day in 1944, more than 1,000 British bombers drop 5,000 tons of bombs on German gun batteries on the Normandy coast in preparation for D-Day.


Yesterday, Attorney General Josh Kaul filed felony charges against three, two of whom are attorneys, for a fraudulent presidential electors plot. Anya Van Wagtendonk and Sarah Lehr report Wisconsin AG files felony charges against Trump allies involved in 2020 false electors scheme (‘Attorneys Kenneth Chesebro and Jim Troupis, political operative Michael Roman each face 1 count of felony forgery’):

Wisconsin’s attorney general filed felony charges Tuesday against three people in connection with a 2020 scheme to submit a slate of false electors in support of former President Donald Trump.

Attorneys Kenneth Chesebro and Jim Troupis, as well as political operative Michael Roman, each face one count of felony forgery for their roles in the scheme, which involved signing official-looking documentation claiming that Trump won Wisconsin in 2020, even though he had narrowly lost. 

The Class H felony charges were filed Tuesday morning by Attorney General Josh Kaul in Dane County Circuit Court. They use a state law suggesting that Chesebro, Troupis and Roman acted knowingly when they worked to collect and submit the false elector documentation.

….

Chesebro is considered the architect of the plot, which extended to multiple swing states Trump had lost, in the days following the 2020 presidential election. In a memo he sent to Troupis, who was then the lead attorney for the Trump campaign in Wisconsin, Chesebro laid out a strategy to use “alternate” electors to contest the election results. 

Chesebro and Troupis recently settled a civil lawsuit related to their actions in Wisconsin. As part of that agreement, the two men admitted no “liability or culpability,” but said they would not submit false electors in the future. 

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See also Wisconsin Native Kenneth Chesebro’s January 6th Instigation and Wisconsin & Arizona Investigations into Fraudulent 2020 Presidential Electors.


This cow is the most expensive ever sold at auction:

Daily Bread for 6.4.24: Regent Bob Atwell Yields and Resigns (So Much for Vos’s Advice)

Good morning.

Tuesday in Whitewater will be cloudy with nighttime thunderstorms and a high of 82. Sunrise is 5:17 and sunset 8:29 for 15h 12m 31s of daytime. The moon is a waning crescent with 4.9 percent of its visible disk illuminated.

The Whitewater Common Council meets at 6:30 PM.

On this day in 1861,  Dr. Erastus B. Wolcott, a Milwaukee surgeon, performs the first recorded removal of a diseased kidney

On this day in 1989, the Tiananmen Square protests are suppressed in Beijing, leading to a massacre by the People’s Liberation Army, with between 241 and 10,000 dead (an unofficial estimate).


FREE WHITEWATER has been following the controversy Regent Bob Atwell created by taking Robin Vos’s advice to remain on the Board of Regents past Atwell’s term. See Another WISGOP Holdover (After an Encouraging Reminder from Lifetime Schemer Robin Vos) and Update on Another WISGOP Holdover.

Atwell has now yielded and resigned from the Regents, confirming once again that listening to Robin Vos is a sucker’s play. Kelly Meyerhofer reports Conservative UW Regent Bob Atwell resigns, clearing way for new appointee to serve:

A conservative University of Wisconsin regent who planned to remain on the board despite his term ending has resigned, clearing the way for his successor to join the board.

Former Republican Gov. Scott Walker appointed Bob Atwell to the UW Board of Regents for a term that ended May 1. Atwell emailed UW System leaders late last month about his plan to continue serving until he resigned or his successor was confirmed by the GOP-controlled state Senate. He noted his replacement hadn’t even been named and he hoped his extension would improve communication between the Legislature and the board.

The state Supreme Court ruled in 2022 that political appointees can remain in their posts until the Senate confirms their successor because the expiration of a term doesn’t in itself create a vacancy.

Evers on May 31 announced Timothy Nixon would take Atwell’s spot for a term ending in 2031. Nixon, who earned a bachelor’s degree from UW-Green Bay and a law degree from UW-Madison, is a bankruptcy lawyer for Godfrey & Kahn.

Atwell resigned Monday, according to an email he sent to UW leaders and shared with the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. 

Atwell is claiming his actions were ‘misinterpreted,’ but it is Atwell who followed Vos’s lousy advice and declined to change course until he, Atwell, faced public criticism. The best way to avoid being ‘misinterpreted’ is to avoid counsel from men whose advice leads to ‘misinterpretation.’

Which men would those be? Men like this:

“Incredibly Safe!” By Lehnmat – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=89016154

Baby Bats via Bat Conservation International:

Daily Bread for 6.3.24: Update on Another WISGOP Holdover

Good morning.

Monday in Whitewater will be partly cloudy with a high of 80. Sunrise is 5:17 and sunset 8:28 for 15h 11m 28s of daytime. The moon is a waning crescent with 10.9 percent of its visible disk illuminated.

Whitewater’s Equal Opportunities Commission meets at 5 PM, and the Police & Fire Commission meets at 6 PM.

On this day in 1965,  NASA launches Gemini 4, a NASA crew’s first multi-day space mission. Ed White, a crew member, performs the first American spacewalk.


Here’s an update on yesterday’s post about Another WISGOP Holdover (After an Encouraging Reminder from Lifetime Schemer Robin Vos). Robert Atwell, who has signaled he’ll overstay his term in the Board of Regents, cannot say no other nominees are pending. Henry Redman reports Evers makes three appointments to UW Board of Regents despite Walker appointee’s refusal to leave:

Gov. Tony Evers on Friday announced three appointments to the University of Wisconsin Board of Regents, including one to replace an appointee of Gov. Scott Walker who has said he won’t leave his position despite the expiration of his term. 

In a news release announcing his appointments to the board, which contains 14 citizen members, Evers did not address Robert Atwell’s statement earlier this week that he would be remaining on the board, but said that the body is at a “critical juncture.” 

“Our UW System is at a critical juncture after a decade-long war waged on higher education by Republican lawmakers in our state, the devastating results of which we are seeing firsthand as campuses close their doors, layoff staff, and cut programs,” Evers said. “The work of the UW Board of Regents is as important as ever, and I have full confidence that the three individuals I am appointing today are ready and prepared to face these challenges head-on, to do what is in the best interest for our students, faculty, and staff, and to ensure we have the fully funded, fully functioning UW System that Wisconsinites deserve and that meets the needs of our students, our workforce, and our local communities.”

On Monday, Atwell said in an email to UW System leaders that he wouldn’t be leaving. He’s able to remain on the board because of a legal precedent set by the state Supreme Court after a Walker appointee to the state Natural Resources Board refused to leave for over a year past the expiration of his term. The precedent states that so long as the state Senate, currently controlled by Republicans, does not confirm an appointee’s replacement, that person can remain in their post indefinitely. Wisconsin Elections Commission Administrator Meagan Wolfe has also used the ruling to remain in her post despite opposition from Republicans to her continued service in the role. 

Evers appointed Tim Nixon, Jack Salzwedel, and Desmond Adongo to seven year terms. 

Nixon, a commercial lawyer, was appointed to replace Atwell. He has received three degrees from UW schools. 

Can stay and should stay aren’t the same concepts; a well-ordered system is one in which should trumps can.


Conditions allow firefighters to make progress in containing Corral Fire:

Daily Bread for 6.2.24: Another WISGOP Holdover (After an Encouraging Reminder from Lifetime Schemer Robin Vos)

Good morning.

Sunday in Whitewater will be partly sunny with a high of 77. Sunrise is 5:17 and sunset 8:28 for 15h 10m 23s of daytime. The moon is a waning crescent with 19.6 percent of its visible disk illuminated.

On this day in 1966,  Surveyor 1 lands in Oceanus Procellarum on the Moon, becoming the first U.S. spacecraft to soft-land on another world.


Readers will recall Fred Prehn, the dentist-cranberry farmer who refused to leave his seat on the state’s Natural Resouces Board at the expiration of his term. Although the Wisconsin Supreme Court, then with a conservative majority, found his actions lawful, Prehn later left that board, in the way that even the most stubborn ticks dislodge themselves after they’ve gourged long enough. See Tiny Fred Prehn, Fred Prehn, the Most Self-Aware Man in All History, and Frederick Prehn finally resigns from Natural Resources Board.

Now comes another, as Todd Richmond reports Republican-appointed University of Wisconsin regent refuses to step down when term ends:

Then-Gov. Scott Walker, a Republican, appointed Robert Atwell to the Board of Regents in May 2017. His seven-year term ends this month. 

Atwell sent an email to Universities of Wisconsin President Jay Rothman, regents President Karen Walsh and regents Executive Director Megan Wasley on Monday saying he won’t step down until he chooses to resign or the state Senate confirms a successor. 

The state Supreme Court ruled in 2022 that political appointees don’t have to leave their posts until the Senate confirms their successor. Atwell said in his email that Assembly Speaker Robin Vos reminded him that he could remain in his position on the regents.

Democratic Gov. Tony Evers has yet to announce Atwell’s successor. 

“I knew Bob Atwell as a person of high personal integrity,” Evers told The Associated Press on Saturday. “Something has changed.”

Quite a menagerie the WISGOP has: Atwell comports himself as a parasitic arachnid and Vos as a weasel. Admirers, it seems, in their own disordered but surprising fashion, of the animal kingdom.


Mass parachute jump over Normandy kicks off commemorations for the 80th anniversary of D-Day:

Parachutists jumped from World War II-era planes into now peaceful Normandy to kick off a week of ceremonies marking the 80th anniversary of D-Day. Soldiers from across the United States, Britain, Canada and other Allied nations waded ashore through hails of fire on five beaches on June 6, 1944. French officials, grateful Normandy survivors and other admirers are saying “merci” but also goodbye to the fast-dwindling number of D-Day veterans still alive. (AP video by Nicolas Garriga/Production by Jeffrey Schaeffer)

Daily Bread for 6.1.24: Hawaiian Mochi

Good morning.

Saturday in Whitewater will be rainy with a high of 65. Sunrise is 5:18 and sunset 8:27 for 15h 09m 14s of daytime. The moon is a waning crescent with 29.4 percent of its visible disk illuminated.

On this day in 1494, a monk, John Cor, records the first known batch of Scotch whisky.

From May 31 to June 12, 1864, more than 160,000 men clashed at Cold Harbor, Virginia, during the Wilderness Campaign. The 2nd, 5th, 6th, 7th and 36th Wisconsin Infantry regiments participated. On June 1, the 5th Wisconsin Infantry arrived after a long march, barefoot and exhausted. Nevertheless, they charged enemy lines and captured a number of prisoners. By the afternoon, the 36th Wisconsin Infantry lost 140 of the 142 men who tried to take an enemy position.


Hawaiian Mochi:


What’s Up: June 2024 Skywatching Tips from NASA:

Daily Bread for 5.31.24: New Representatives for New Legislative Districts

Good morning.

Friday in Whitewater will be partly sunny with a high of 78. Sunrise is 5:18 and sunset 8:26 for 15h 08m 01s of daytime. The moon is a waning crescent with 40.4 percent of its visible disk illuminated.

On this day in 1790, the United States enacts its first copyright statute, the Copyright Act of 1790.

On this day in 1899, two salesmen, John H. Nicholson and Samuel E. Hill, crossed paths a second time, in Beaver Dam. The pair had first met eight months before in the Central Hotel in Boscobel and discussed the need for some way to provide Christian support to traveling businessmen. During this second meeting in Beaver Dam the two decided to “get right at it. Start the ball rolling and follow it up.” They invited their professional contacts to an organizational meeting to be held in Janesville on July 1, 1899, at which the organization was formally named and chartered. By 1948, the Gideons had distributed over 15 million bibles world-wide. 


Rich Kremer reports Nearly half of Wisconsin Legislature won’t run in old districts as new maps shake up state politics (‘At least 44 state representatives and senators will run in new districts under maps drawn by Gov. Tony Evers and passed by Republicans’):

As the dust settles from the past year’s redistricting battles in Wisconsin, the state Legislature is undergoing a shakeup, with nearly half of all state lawmakers having announced they won’t run in their old districts. 

All told, at least 61 members of the state Assembly and Senate won’t run again in their old districts. Of those, 41 are Republicans and 20 are Democrats.

In the Assembly alone, 40 representatives — more than a third of the chamber —have either filed to run for new seats in the Legislature or say they plan on it. 

Another 16 state lawmakers, including eight Democrats and eight Republicans, have announced plans to leave the Legislature entirely. 

This is all to the good — Wisconsin could use a new legislature.


Back from the brink, whooping cranes inspire awe but still need help: