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STATE VERSUS COMMUNITY INTEREST.

Shops and highway traffic

Both Shorewood and Whitefish Bay are working on improving their business districts. In Shorewood's case the main purpose is to improve the tax base. We've accepted that that task is of primary public interest.

Among the secondary interests, the most difficult community problem is fast movement of cars through these districts.

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Cup Is To Saucer As Test Is To Friday

Remember when you took your driver’s test? You got the booklet for the written part, memorized the laws, had your friends quiz you and went into that test feeling very confident that you had done all you could do to pass it. You knew what was expected of you, how to answer and knew the onus was completely on you. The second part was a performance assessment, the actual driving test. This required prior tutelage of a family member, friend, or driver's ed. grand pubah who had many years of experience preparing students to pass this very driving test. You've been taught...for the test.

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NOW, WHAT IS REPRESENTIVE GOVERNMENT, AGAIN?

Town meetings.

No amount of speculation will really tell us why all those who want to be re-elected are not being opposed by other candidates. Each of us could come up with our own ideas. Yet without these people in office we would not have any government.

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WHEN IS AN ELECTION NOT AN ELECTION?

Elections

Types of diminished elections have been occurring for some time, perhaps in other communities as well in Shorewood. If it is apathy, then we must ask, why the indifference, the lack of interest?

I don't believe that we can ascribe this feeling to the thousands of people who make up our community. Although a mix of things occurring at the same time could result in that feeling among a large group.

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'LOVE OUR INCUMBENTS.

Government-incumbency

Term limits make for sparse ballot,” reads a headline in this morning's newspaper. No, this didn't refer to Shorewood. “1 Cedarburg seat drew no takers,” except for the incumbent whose time is up because of term limits.

Shorewood doesn't have term limits. Our incumbents are eligible, but we don't have challengers. Its challengers that are lacking. We have ample number of incumbents.

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Barbie For President

Apparently, the power of a woman’s tear has been underestimated. How many times did you see the video of Hillary Clinton having what some pundits are calling “an emotional moment”? How many times did you hear the words “attack ad” or “ganging up on” during this past month? I wonder how all of this is perceived by our children. Girls hear skepticism about whether Clinton’s tears were real, or just an award winning performance. Watch where, when, and how you cry girls; it will be psychoanalyzed. Sleep deprivation, exhaustion, emotional strain and the constant pressure of having to raise money doesn‘t count. You’re not supposed to feel that. Or are you? When I saw that Hillary Clinton cried in public my first reaction was, “Oh no, Hillary. That will be the end of you.” I’ve experienced being told I was too sensitive when I cried, being told “don’t cry” when under strain or crying into pillows so other people wouldn’t hear me. I thought it was a bad thing for us women.

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Apathy Abounds in Shorewood -- New Link to Blog on Hillary Tears Blog

Politicians & Politics

Recently we have seen Democracy in Action around the Globe ....... 

Close election in Venezuela, Chavez's bid for "Dictator Powers" fail -- Democracy Does Work .

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Eat My Dust

Ways to save money in America’s schools that are guaranteed to make just about everybody mad at me:

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So...how much do YOU make?

Well, that was interesting. I just finished checking to see how much more or less money all my colleagues are making compared to me. This led me to make snap judgments about whether or not they deserved it and determine how much I should resent them if they made more. I thought about how early each arrived, how much they contributed to the district in labor or intellect, how dedicated I thought they were, and then it spiraled even lower from there (although that doesn't seem possible). I was much more likely to become a team player when I was ignorant of what others earned. Now I can’t unsee the wages of those people who earn more than I for whatever reason. Oddly, I was happier with my pay before I saw this darn public revelation. While I think some are getting way more than they deserve, relatively, I don't necessarily whine for more. Being brought up in a middle class, with northern European roots I’m very satisfied with my salary, and live with the constant understanding that I don’t deserve it and I’m just lucky to be working at all.

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Stupid Parent Tricks

Kids, Parents, Schools, Teachers

Stupid Parent Tricks is a segment that David Letterman will  never have on his show.  The Stupid Pets Trick segment probably keeps his staff more than busy enough --- they couldn't possibly handle the volume that they would surely be inundated with, if they resorted to the low hanging fruit of Stupid Parents.

Of what seems to be endless controversy in the media, and the topic of discussion around the water coolers and latte machines is how our kids now are supposedly doing much worse in school than their predecessors  - how they are becoming obese couch potatoes - how they are oversexed and violent - how they dis-respect their  teachers and other authority figures --  on and on, ad nauseum ..........

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The Packers and the Doo-Doo Heads

Things to remember when watching the Packer playoff game with kids around:

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Shorewood clears snow for St Roberts but not for local businesses

D2D, Parking, Politicians & Politics, Schools, Streetscape, Village Administration, Walkable

This past December was a good reminder that we really do live in an area that gets snow !  Yes, here in Wisconsin, Mother Nature has been known to make life miserable by dropping a whole lot of wet sloppy snow, and then freezing it all into frozen slush.

 On December 20th I wrote a posting to this blog noting that the merchants on Capitol Drive were still hampered by the mounds of snow and ice piled up at the curb.  Shorewood had cleared the mounds along North Oakland Avenue, but hadn't gotten to Capitol Drive.  In previous postings, I had noted that crosswalks in the business district remained treacherous and needed clearing.

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Would You Like Some Fries With Your Crow?

When people are part of a losing team they get reflective and philosophical. What else can we do when Eli Manning turns out to be the winning quarterback? Although our first impulse may be to retire Brett or get some lavender oil for Al Harris, the fact is we lost. We lost and our children are watching.

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Trustees Johnson (pres), Eckman, Hanewall, Hickey, and Phinney Do Not respond to questions on Snow Problems, while Trustees Anderson and Maher do Communicate

Politicians & Politics, Village Administration, Walkable

After all the problems Shorewood has had with piles of snow and ice througout the Business District, the delay in clearing Crosswalks, and the Free Show Removal for St Roberts, I sent the following questions to all the Trustees:

 Do you think that St Roberts should be charged for that service.  Do you think that service should be expanded to other private lots.

What position do you take on making the business district "Walkable" year round, by having the DPW removing snow and ice from the sidewalks, aprons and curbs? 
 
And on making the crosswalks safe by quickly cleaning them to the pavement, especially for the needs of the elderly and those who must use canes, walkers and wheelchairs.
 
Do you agree  that snow and ice removal in the Business District should be a priority, not only for the business owners to be able to engage in commerce, but also for the safety and welfare of the pedestrians? 
 
Do you support giving  the proper resources to the DPW (equipment and funds) for snow and ice removal to make Shorewood safe for its pedestrians in winter --- and for businesses to be accessible to their customers?
 
Only Trustees Anderson and Maher choose to communicate their opinions as follow:
(Trustee Anderson responded twice -- responses are in order as received)
 
(1) From Dawn Anderson 
 
Hi Dave - thanks for the note. First - of course I believe it's
important to make sure the district is walkable. I am an avid walker and
believe me, I had some real issues last month not only in the district but
in residential areas as well. It was a horrible month that caught alot
of communities off guard - WFB was just as bad in their business
district although I noticed alot of business owners had cleared their own
curbs, and of course we know the trouble Milwaukee had on the east side.
Part of the problem (I believe, but will find out more) could be the new
overnight parking allowed on North Oakland. This does make it more
difficult for the DPW to do a thorough job - but it's a new program and I'm
sure there will be kinks to iron out.  Regardless, crosswalks really
do need to be a priority. I agree.

I have to admit that I meant to talk to the DPW about the St Roberts
issue when it first popped up on the blog and it fell off my radar. I
will definately talk to them to find out what precipitated it. I was very
suprised by it honestly and I am concerned that a precident was being
set which I don't believe SHOULD be set. But since I don't know the
details, I won't comment beyond that for now.

Thanks again and have a good weekend,  dawn
(2) From Mike Maher
 
Dear Mr. Tatarowicz,

I share your concerns about maintaining the walkability of our entire
community in winter.  For Shorewood to achieve this goal, it requires
the combined efforts of residents, businesses and the Village. The vast
majority of Shorewood residents and businesses do an amazing job at
keeping their sidewalks cleared plus helping neighbors when needed.  The
Village DPW works hard to keep up with clearing the streets, sidewalks at
the corners, parks, public buildings and business district but because
of budget and staffing constraints they can only do so much so
quickly.  I will frequently see a DPW staff person plowing the streets into
the evening then see the same person picking up garbage carts out of snow
drift at 8:00 a.m. the next morning.  

This past December, Shorewood received a large amount of snow and some
of it froze like concrete which made removal very challenging for
everyone.  I continue to strongly push to have the Village clear the large
mounds of snow that build up at the crosswalks at the street
intersections.  I have asked the Village Manager to update the Village Board on
how the snow removal operations are going so far this season and explore
possible ways for the Village to clear the sidewalks at the corners in
the residential areas and the business district more quickly.  As with
any municipal service,  there is always a balancing of striving to
provide the highest level of service within the budget constraints the
community faces.  I know there is also interest from the Village's
Pedestrian Safety Committee to review the Village's snow removal efforts and
see if there are ways to improve our efforts.

I have asked the Village manager to provide me information on the
possible clearing of an area at St. Roberts. I was not aware the Village was
clearing any area at St. Roberts. The Village does clear a few private
parking lots where the Village has an arrangement with the lot owner
to allow Shorewood to sell overnight parking permits for the lot. St.
Roberts is not one of these overnight parking sites.  So until the
Village staff gets back to me with the background information, I would be
just guessing on the reason for the plowing.  There maybe Village traffic
safety concerns with the grade school children walking to the school.  

Thanks for your e-mail. I will continue to push to do as much as
possible to keep our community as walkable as possible. 

Mike Maher

Trustee 
(3) From Dawn Anderson
 
Hi Dave - I spoke with Jim Swenson yesterday before the snow got bad
and he filled me in on St Roberts -  they asked for help removing the
PILES of snow - we did not really plow their lot although given the date
(right before Christmas) our guys probably felt they'd do a little extra
clean up for them. The piles were causing a safety hazard not only
because kids were climbing on them, but the freeze/thaw cycle was causing
runoff onto the sidewalks - creating an ice hazard.

My understanding is that Jim will be sending you a note, if he hasn't
already, explaining the situation in more detail. Along with Trustee
Maher, I would urge patience. They do the best the can with the available
resources.

Thanks, dawn
 
WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS --- PLEASE FEEL FREE TO LEAVE YOUR COMMENTS BELOW
 

Illegal Use of Idiom. 10 yards.

Okay, so here’s what we do. You know how nuts people go over football, right? Well I think with enough good old smoke and mirror television, we could actually convince people that the campaign is just an extension of the race to what we can bill as Superbowl B. Pundits are always bemoaning the fact that young people get all razzed up when they’re at rallys but sleep in on the day of the election. We can keep not only college kids interested, but sports fans invested as well. Think of all the stuff people know about individual players and teams. If they could know even half of that about the presidential candidates, people might actually vote on more than who they’d want to tailgate with.

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$600. That's Funny.

Dear Washington,

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Admit it. You've all seen this.

Did you ever notice that little kids can go for hours with snot hanging from their noses and not even notice it? They get so focused on activity they don’t even stop long enough to bend an arm, put nose to the fold and carry out a fairly hygienic sleeve sneeze when one is called for. No, they just look forward, release their wet, nasty germs like face geysers and proceed to touch all the books, pencils, toys, doorknobs, teachers and friends they can get their hands on.

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Why haven't Trustees Johnson (pres), Eckman, Hanewall, Hickey, and Phinney responded to Snow Problems in Village ?

Parking, Police, Politicians & Politics, Streetscape, Village Administration, Walkable

 Why haven't Trustees Johnson (pres), Eckman, Hanewall, Hickey, and Phinney responded to Snow Problems in Village ?

Perhaps it is because of what they know that the most of us in the Village don't.

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Let's Review

So kids, what have we learned so far about how to become the president? Hillary says she has learned that if you want something done right, do it yourself. Always wear black pants and no one will notice after awhile and be yourself, unless of course that’s not working. She adds that even though she knows every issue inside and out, the smartest kid in the class doesn’t always get to go to prom. What’s that? She says she’s figured out that you can’t step into the same river twice. The Changemobile has no reverse.

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Comedy/Tragedy

Wanna see something funny? Try reenacting a state of the union address with 6 and 7 year olds. One person gets to be president and the rest are split into the democrats, the republicans, members of the supreme court and then the kids who don’ t ever want to do anything get to be the press and sit cross legged on the floor with construction paper press passes. We make an aisle and the kid who is always shushed for talking too loudly gets to yell, “Ladies and Gentlemen, the President of the United States.“ One side of the aisle bursts into loud, low politician’s “HOOAs” while the other stands and claps politely. Members of both sides stretch to the aisle to shake the hand of someone most either can’t stand or someone they think has screwed up the party for the next generation. Everyone smiles, glad hands and back slaps until the only kid who can be responsible with a hammer slams it down a few times on top of the dictionary. The crowd quiets. Hammer girl introduces the president again, in case people came in late, and the place erupts again. It’s hard to teach kids how to look like they just came from a couple Manhattans, but we just tell them to act a tiny bit silly. The quiet kid Supreme Court just sits down and shuts up.

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