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What about a more perfect democracy?

Empire of democracy.

Senator John McCain, one of the candidates likely to become president of the United States, has indicated that we might remain in Iraq for some time.

And he is probably right. Now that we're in, getting out is going to be quite tricky. The question is, what will be the purpose of our stay? How many troops are going to be required and what is their task going to be?

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QUESTION: Who won the most votes from Independents in the recent Pennsylvania Primary - Clinton or Obama ??

Barack Obama, Democrats, Hillary Clinton, McCain, Politicians & Politics, Presidential Primary, Republicans, Wisconsin Primary

Much has been said about the ability of Barack Obama to win over Independents and Undecided Voters ...... which will bode well for whichever Democratic Candidate faces off with John McCain.

McCain has a strong attraction to Independent Voters who do not necessarily vote a straight party line, but who look at the individual candidate's attributes. 

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The Emperor Has No Homework

I was talking with a former student the other day. He is now in middle school and has a list of complaints common to young teenagers. To many of them I responded, “Just man up and do it”, but after he left, I did a lot of thinking about one issue. He told me that if work was late, the grade on it would drop one level for every day. If he did A work, but handed it in three days late, the A work would become D work by virtue of its lateness only.

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Beyond pot-hole mending.

New infrastructures

Much of Shorewood's infrastructure is in the “100 year-old” category. We've been quite frugal over its maintenance, primarily because it's costly and shows no immediate financial pay-back.

Another reason for limiting our expenditures along these lines is that our politicians have usually promised minimum or no tax increases. We've also relied on the thinking that “if it ain't broke, don't fix it.”

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Little guy.

Little creatures.

He would lie next to my work. As I wrote he heard the clicking. When I paused he offeed his little head for petting. Then he'd walk all over the table. Never placing a paw on the keys.

Now he is no more. And we shall miss the soft purr and gentle nature of this frail little creature.  His honest personality gave so much to us.

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Does our economy add up to a mere trickle?

Pump priming.

Politicians necessarily include economic theory into their political presentations. These are usually amazing ventures into nothingness.

President Bush's economic policies have been as bad as Hoover's, except that Hoover didn't give us a war.

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What about it?

Seniors

Elizabeth Price, Director of Shorewood's Senior Resource Center has been doing excellent work for the seniors of this community. It seems to me that it would take a staff of several people to do all that she accomplishes.

It's obvious to most people who have experienced the senior programs that further progress here requires more attention by the Village Board in terms of providing staff. I would think that at least 2 more people are needed to continue the good work. The Bill Benjamin fund could help carry the additional staff for the next few years for starters.

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Beats dictatorhips.

Appointing a president.

Well, the Shorewood Village Board did again, This time they made two significant mistakes.

One, they approved the Sunrise development, a project for those in the sunset of their lives—seems there was a song, sunrise, sunset. But a mistake never-the-less.

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Beauty and the Budget

It is a perfect irony that this year’s high school production is Beauty and the Beast. I saw a preview and it was spectacular. The sets, costumes, pit orchestra, lighting and everything else that contributed to this bit of magic were top notch. Seemed as though they did not cut corners on any part of it. There was an extended stage, excellent sound equipment and yards of gorgeous velvet red curtain. This school was able to provide everything the parents of these young, talented people could ever wish for.

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Hillary Goes After the Bubba Vote --- Is that the White Trailer Trash Crowd ?

Barack Obama, Democrats, Hillary Clinton, Hillary Clinton goes Negative againts Obama, Politicians & Politics, Presidential Primary, Republicans

As the results from the Indiana Primary showed, the Bubba vote that Hillary was so hotly pursuing in the recent weeks, did not come to her aid for a big win.

After Barack Obama made his comments about Small Town America:

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Downside up sometimes seems better than upside down.

Democratic elections

Further consideration of the appointment of trustees for Shorewood rather than election might lead us to the following assumptions:

First assumption: existing members feel that that they are good judges, if not the best judges of what makes a good trustee and are willing to examine and interview those who make themselves available and then select one from the pool to join them on the Board of Trustees.

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The “golden goose policy”.

Property tax, the golden goose of local government.

Somewhere along the line, I heard that Shorewood was pursuing a policy for attracting young families with school-aged children that would help bring state revenue to our school system.

Most of the new development that has taken place has been in the form of condos that usually attract people of more mature age and who usually are without children.  So much for how that policy has influenced our demographics.

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Hillary has to keep running --- for the MONEY !

Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, Politicians & Politics, Presidential Primary

The contribution limits for individuals in the presidential primary race is $2300.  This has been a problem for Hillary Clinton whose money primarily came from big contributions, and quite a number of contributors who hit the limit, and could not be hit up for more, versus Barack Obama, whose contributions came from more individuals in smaller amounts --- individuals he could go back to several times, with no fear of their hitting the limit.

Although there is a limit on contributions from individuals to a candidate, the big loop hole in the campaign finance laws is that a candidate can contribute unlimited amounts to his or her own campaign.

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Sometimes It Is The Gift That Counts

Dads get shafted. For the past few days in many classrooms around the country, children have been working on Mother’s Day presents. Kids are being prodded to think of all the wonderful things their mothers do for them besides “making food“. I think elementary teachers throughout the years have painted themselves in corners and are now the default gift and centerpiece providers for all American households. I would like to know where this started, but since that first turkey went home there has been year after year of stuffed paper, traced hand or paper bag versions of birds to plop on the Thanksgiving table. One holiday taken care of. Around winter break you’ll see classroom made art pieces going home to celebrate the birthday of winter apparently. Lots of snowmen, mittens and fir trees that with a few hands-full of tinsel would represent, well you know. Another holiday covered and we’re not even to the new year. We make sure that children have gifts for parents, holiday decorations for the house and whoever invented Grandparents’ Day got us to have children cheer up their one day as well. Check, check, check.

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National This and That Month

America loves to proclaim things. It's advertising without the cost. I'm not sure of the process, though. Can one simply declare a month "National (fill in the blank) Month" and that makes it so or do you have to go to City Hall, get petitions signed or have the ear of a governing body? For teachers, this could be the curriculum guide we've been looking for. If we wanted to, we could just hop month to month building classroom activities and lessons around the malady, movement or product to be touted. I used to teach poetry in National Poetry Month, Women's History during March, Black History during February, etc. The problem became, however, that every year additional recognitions would be added and after a few decades it adds up!  Now the number of things we're supposed to be aware of, and make our students aware of is, as most things like this become, hilarious. A true patriot would collapse under the burden of such celebration, ay nah?

This piece can be read, or sung. It is (or seems) most fun when belted out during National Beer Chugging Month, which I now proclaim to be in the month of May, as well. So grab your grog and someone old enough to know the melody of the "Too Fat Polka" and have some fun. These are all real days. Ah one, ah two, ah three...SING

Lots of things to celebrate, oh May’s the month for me

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Realty Estate Sales Remain Low in Milwaukee Area --- Could be Concern for Paying off Shorewood TIF's

CDA, Residential, Taxes, TIF

According to the Greater Milwaukee Realtor Association, of which I am a member ---- sales in April in the Milwaukee Area were still down: 

If this trend continues, it could affect the repayment of the TIF's the back the spending by the Village on various projects, as the cost of repayment could be spread to all property owners if the TIF properties do not appreciate in value. 

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Jazz

 I like almost any kind of music --- especially if it is live.  And nothing is better than Good Live Jazz.

 

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So You Want To Be President

I remember being told once that middle school students were given so many hours of homework because they were being groomed to attend schools like Harvard and Yale. Not that they would all go to them, but they would be prepared to if “Extreme Home Makeover” ever dropped by to raze their home and throw in an ivy league scholarship with the new double stove and bed made of pancake flippers.

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Shorewood Needlessly Hurts Local Village Businesses AGAIN

BID, CDA, Local Merchants, Parking, Shorewood Businesses, Streetscape, TIF

 Frequent readers of my blog --- both of you :-) --- may recall that last fall when the Village was starting the Streetscape project, they had NO PARKING signs all along Oakland Avenue --- for days at a time when NO WORK was being done.

 

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The Best Party I Thought I Didn't Want

The kids in our class brought in over 500 pounds of food for a school food drive. That’s a lot of food, by the way. Picture an upright piano made of canned goods, shaped with bags of beans, rice and flour. My partner teacher and I thought it would be fun to throw out a 500-pound goal, thinking there was no way we could ever reach it. Not with 8 oz. cans of soup and such. After suggesting we would sponsor a Friday night party should the goal be met, things started happening. Every few days we would weigh the food that came in and add that weight to the original figure. As the days went on things looked good for us, we were in the 200s and felt quite sure Friday would remain “flop-on-the-couch” Friday, for us teachers anyway.

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