Daily Bread for 3.22.18

Good morning.

Thursday in Whitewater will be sunny with a high of forty-eight. Sunrise is 6:52 AM and sunset 7:10 PM, for 12h 17m 26s of daytime. The moon is a waxing crescent with 26.1% of its visible disk illuminated. Today is the four hundred ninety-seventh day.Days since Trump’s election, with 11.9.16 as the first day.

Whitewater’s Community Development Authority meets at 5:30 PM.

On this day in 1765, Parliament imposes the Stamp Act on her American colonies:

The Stamp Act of 1765 (short title Duties in American Colonies Act 1765; 5 George III, c. 12) was an Act of the Parliament of Great Britain that imposed a direct tax on the colonies of British America and required that many printed materials in the colonies be produced on stamped paper produced in London, carrying an embossed revenue stamp.[1][2] Printed materials included legal documents, magazines, playing cards, newspapers, and many other types of paper used throughout the colonies. Like previous taxes, the stamp tax had to be paid in valid British currency, not in colonial paper money.[3] The purpose of the tax was to help pay for troops stationed in North America after the British victory in the Seven Years’ War and its North American theater of the French and Indian War. However, the Colonists had never feared a French invasion to begin with, and they contended that they had already paid their share of the expenses.[4] They suggested that it was actually a matter of British patronage to surplus British officers and career soldiers who should be paid by London.

On this day in 1854, Eugene Shepard, Father of the Hodag, is born:

Hodag ‘captured’ by Eugene Shepard, 1893

On this date Eugene Shepard was born near Green Bay. Although he made his career in the lumbering business near Rhinelander, he was best known for his story-telling and practical jokes. He told many tales of Paul Bunyan, the mythical lumberjack, and drew pictures of the giant at work that became famous. Shepard also started a new legend about a prehistoric monster that roamed the woods of Wisconsin – the hodag. Shepard built the mythical monster out of wood and bull’s horns. He fooled everyone into believing it was alive, allowing it to be viewed only inside a dark tent. The beast was displayed at the Wausau and Antigo county fairs before Shepard admitted it was all a hoax. [Source: Badger saints and sinners, by Fred L. Holmes, p.459-474]

Recommended for reading in full —

➤ ABC News reports Mueller team zeroing in on political consulting firm with Trump ties:

➤ Daniel Bice and Mary Spicuzza report Wisconsin GOP operative Mark Block helped link Steve Bannon, Cambridge Analytica:

Of course, there’s a Wisconsin connection to the Facebook scandal involving Cambridge Analytica.

And, not surprisingly to some, it involves longtime Wisconsin GOP operative Mark Block.

Block, who has a history of campaign missteps, has been named as a key player in the international uproar over Cambridge Analytica, a London-based firm that mined data from 50 million Facebook users to try to influence the 2016 presidential race.

Christopher Wylie, a whistleblower who brought the scandal to light, identified Block as the middleman between former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon and Cambridge Analytica.

In a story posted earlier this week, the Guardian newspaper said Wylie offered “what sounds like a tall tale, though it’s one he can back up with an email.”

“Mark Block, a veteran Republican strategist, happened to sit next to a cyberwarfare expert for the U.S. Air Force on a plane,” the newspaper said. It continued, “And the cyberwarfare guy is like, ‘Oh, you should meet SCL (Group). They do cyberwarfare for elections.’ “

SCL Group is the parent company for Cambridge Analytica.

The firm, which was hired by President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign, has been listed as having a New Berlin address in some Federal Election Commission filings. That P.O. Box has been used by Block in the past.

➤ Mary Spicuzza also reports Thousands of Milwaukee voters have been dropped from rolls, including some erroneously:

Thousands of Milwaukee voters have been dropped from voter rolls — including some erroneously — through the state’s registration system, city officials said Wednesday.

Some 44,000 voters were removed from city rolls after the state started using a new process in the Electronic Registration Information Center (ERIC), they said. It’s unclear how many of those were dropped in error.

“This is not a problem that has been caused at the local level,” Mayor Tom Barrett said at a City Hall news conference.

Barrett said problems were caused by incorrect data provided by the state Department of Motor Vehicles and the U.S. Postal Service, leading some voters who haven’t actually moved or changed addresses to be erroneously dropped from the rolls.

“We are very concerned with the number of legitimate voters whose records have been deactivated,” Barrett said.

➤ Jennifer Rubin observes Trump doesn’t bother to hide his submissiveness to Putin anymore:

Trump’s servility when it comes to Putin defies a benign explanation and takes us to the heart of the Russia scandal: What does Putin “have” on Trump, and why is Trump so reluctant to defend American interests when it comes to only this world leader? Mueller can ask Stephen K. Bannon and Michael Flynn about Trump’s mysterious passivity, but he might want to question outgoing secretary of state Rex Tillerson, too. He would no doubt be entirely candid and might have some important insights into Trump’s refusal to challenge Putin. Come to think of it, Mike Pompeo, the CIA director who has been nominated to replace Tillerson, might have something to say on this score as well.

➤ Meg Jones reports Clover, the adorable fox kit found abandoned last week, is improving at Humane Society:

A week after the shivering ball of fur was found, he has gained half a pound, is recovering from the maladies and is weaning off liquid food. His eyesight has improved and his ears, laid back when born, have now perked up.

“He’s like a true toddler now,” said Crystal Sharlow-Schaefer, wildlife supervisor at the Wisconsin Humane Society’s Wildlife Rehabilitation Center.

“Wild parents are good parents. For him to be in this shape, the fox family had to have been in crisis. He was a nugget of problems, but he has really rallied,” Sharlow-Schaefer said.

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