Today’s highly interesting read (09/28/17): Get rid of the anthem?

One of my favorite columnists is Jeff Jacoby of the Boston Globe. I’ve shared his material on my blog many times.

I disagree with the premise of his latest column, but I still find it compelling. The piece would make a great radio talk show topic.

Here’s a brief excerpt:

They don’t sing “The Star-Spangled Banner” when the president delivers his State of the Union message, or when Congress convenes, or when Supreme Court justices assemble for oral arguments. The national anthem isn’t played at the lighting of the National Christmas Tree or the awarding of the Pulitzer Prizes. Worship services in church don’t include the national anthem.

So what is it doing at sporting events?

Here’s the entire column.


On the passing of Playboy’s Hugh Hefner

Millionaire publisher of Playboy magazine Hugh Hefner poses with Playmate Bunnies at one of his clubs in 1962.
Photo: At one of Hefner’s clubs in 1962. Getty Images

Not everyone is praising Hefner’s legacy.

Every social observer agrees that the sexual revolution is unintelligible without noting the effect that Hefner’s philosophy played. But did it liberate?

When Playboy was founded, the birth control pill did not exist, abortion was illegal, and sex education was non-existent in the schools. Yet the rate of out-of-wedlock births was negligible, abortion was rare, and STDs were insignificant. Today, all three conditions have soared. Moreover, the spike occurred at a time when everything from the ABC’s of condom usage to the wonders of anal sex are taught in sex education classes all across the nation.

Anyone who thinks that Hefner’s legacy is one of liberation needs to explain why those who were the most likely to practice his philosophy wound up being anything but beacons of happiness. Want proof? Just ask the shrinks, and the morticians, in Hollywood.
Catholic League president Bill Donohue


BREAKING NEWS: Milwaukee County Board approves Ballpark Commons resolution

The Milwaukee County Board this morning voted 11-7 to approve a deal for the county to sell the 140-acre property that includes The Rock Sports Complex in Franklin to the entity that runs The Rock. ROC Ventures would then develop Ballpark Commons at the site, a project costing more than $100 million.

Mike Zimmerman heads ROC Ventures and needed to buy the land in order for Ballpark Commons to move forward.

The project’s construction is now slated to begin in the spring of 2018 with the opening of the baseball stadium expected in 2019.

The Milwaukee Business Journal recently reported:

Zimmerman forged a deal to build The Rock on Milwaukee County land in 2012, and over the past two years has been seeking to build the Ballpark Commons project there. A minor-league baseball stadium would be built closer to Rawson Avenue, and would host games by an American Association team owned by Zimmerman’s ROC Ventures, as well as games by the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Panthers men’s baseball team.

A high-tech golf driving range, an indoor sports training center, and associated stores and restaurants would be built next to the stadium.

Those would be built on land Zimmerman would buy under the deal Milwaukee County officials are considering. An ongoing point of discussion is the condition of the land underneath much of the county-owned property. It formerly was the Crystal Ridge ski hill, and before that was a landfill. There’s significant maintenance and equipment costs related to that landfill. Zimmerman’s development group would assume the majority of them.

Under the agreements, the developer would spend $21.2 million over the next 40 years on the landfill, said James Tarantino, Milwaukee County economic development director. Milwaukee County would spend about $4.37 million over that time.

Prior to today’s County Board vote Supervisor John Weishan Jr. made two motions in an effort to delay the matter.

First Weishan moved to refer the resolution to the county’s lawyers, the Corporation Counsel for a written opinion.

Supervisor Steve Taylor said that was not necessary because a Corporation Counsel staffer at the meeting could answer any questions.

Several questions were raised and supervisors were informed that the county would be in a much better position than the status quo because the resolution contains safety measures, including provisions about noise and light remediation that are not currently in place.

Objective measures would also be put in place to review complaints from neighbors.

Taylor objected to Weishan’s motion, saying he was trying to bring up “any doomsday scenario.”

“If you don’t like the project, you vote no. You don’t play games,” argued Taylor.

Weishan’s motion failed with only four supervisors in favor, 14 opposed.

Weishan then moved to send the resolution back to the Finance Committee that recently approved the measure.

“It’s insane to think developing on a landfill is a good idea,” said Weishan.

When the project fails, Weishan said he wanted to see names of those who supported Ballpark Commons printed in newspapers, and supervisors “dragged through the street.”

Weishan’s motion failed again, 2-15.

During debate on the resolution Supervisor David Sartori said the behavior on the County Board floor was an example of why people hate government.

“Endless, endless, endless delays. The silly ass games,” said Sartori.

Weishan continued to criticize the project, claiming the argument that it would be an economic boon was a “miscalculation” and that Ballpark Commons would be a strip mall in 10 years.

But Taylor disagreed, calling Ballpark Commons “a game-changer” that would “change the identity of our community.”

Prior to the Rock “there was nothing that put us (Franklin) on the map,” said Taylor.

UPDATE: Following the vote, Supervisor Taylor provided me this statement:

The Ball Park Commons Development is a big win for Milwaukee County financially, environmentally and will greatly improve the quality of life for its residents.  For the City of Franklin, this is a game changer that will forever alter the identity of our community.  I commend Mike Zimmerman and his development team for enduring this very long process and working with both elected officials and surrounding neighbors to make this a first class project.    

In my 20 years of public service this was by far the most complex development I was ever involved in. But I can tell you that it is also the most satisfying. Before The Rock, Franklin had nothing that could be considered a true destination. What gets built over the next few years will definitely put Franklin on the map.


Supervisor Steve F. Taylor September 2017 E-Newsletter

Dear Friends,

Please click here to view the September 2017 edition of “Privileged to Serve”, the monthly e-newsletter issued by my office.

This edition includes:

-Franklin Senior Citizens’ Walking Club

-2017 Senior Citizen Hall of Fame & Volunteer Dinner

-Legislative Roundup

-Town Hall Meetings

-China Lights 2017

-Free days at the Milwaukee County Parks, museums, and the County Zoo.

-Upcoming events in our community

I encourage you to forward this newsletter to anyone who may find it informative. Please do not hesitate to reach out to my office if I can be of assistance concerning any matter involving Milwaukee County.

All My Best,

Steve F. Taylor 

Milwaukee County Board, 2nd Vice Chairman

Economic & Community Development Committee Chairman

Milwaukee County Supervisor, 9th District

(414) 278-4267

(414) 223-1380 fax

Moving Milwaukee County Forward

Shoddy voter ID study, shoddy reporting

The very recent Journal Sentinel headline read:

Wisconsin voter ID law deterred nearly 17,000 from voting, UW study says

The story opened:

A study released Monday estimates 16,800 or more people in Dane and Milwaukee counties were deterred from casting ballots in November because of Wisconsin’s voter ID law. The study by University of Wisconsin-Madison political scientist Ken Mayer concluded 16,800 to 23,250 voters in the two counties — the Democratic strongholds of Wisconsin — did not vote because of the voter ID law.

Hasn’t happened yet, but I fully expect the newspaper to publish an editorial screaming that the photo ID law is disgustingly unfair and racist.

Meanwhile, as Paul Harvey said countless times, you need to know “the rest of the story.”

Committing a flagrant act of non-lazy journalism: The MacIver Institute:

Perhaps the study’s most troubling number is its minuscule response rate, according to nationally renowned elections expert Hans von Spakovsky.

University of Wisconsin-Madison political scientist Ken Mayer’s analysis, released this week, asserts at least 16,800 voting-age residents in the two counties did not vote because of the law.

What’s buried at the bottom of the mainstream media’s screaming voter disenfranchisement stories is the extrapolation game Mayer plays with the numbers.

The political science professor sent out 2,400 surveys to residents registered to vote but identified as not having cast ballots in November. Mayer received 293 responses. A total of nine respondents claimed voter ID exclusively kept them from voting.

“That’s not sufficient for a ballot poll. That’s too small a sample to give you any validity,” said von Spakovsky.

MediaTrackers also found flaws, reporting “looking at the study closer shows that there are too many holes for it to concretely say that the Voter ID law was at fault, and even less about how this could have changed the outcome of the 2016 election.”

Hero’s widow rips NFL

In 2014 Bradley Cooper starred in this film as he portrayed Navy SEAL Chris Kyle.

In February of 2013 Kyle and his neighbor Chad Littlefield were gunned down at a Texas gun range by former Marine Eddie Ray Routh who was recovering from post traumatic stress disorder.

Kyle’s wife, Taya Kyle is described on one online bio as “a bold advocate for women and families and a passionate voice for faith, strength and American ideals.”

Today Kyle sent a scathing column about the current pro football controversy in the form of a letter directed at the NFL. She challenged players to “build bridges.”

That would involve getting off their knees and getting to work though. If I can do it while I raise two kids as their only parent and work through the greatest pain of my life, let’s see if they can do it…

Read the entire column here.

Today’s highly interesting read (09/27/17): NOTE TO CNN: It’s About Lives and Property, Stupid

An American flag is torn as Irma passes through Naples on September 10.

Today’s read comes from Rebecca Hagelin who writes about television coverage of Hurricane Irma:

I landed on CNN, where news anchor Chris Cuomo had precariously positioned himself on a balcony in Naples as the torrent of the eyewall lashed him with punishing winds and rain.

Mr. Cuomo shouted over the drowning noise of the storm as he speculated how the beautiful homes along the beaches of Naples might be submerged by the expected storm surge. He had my full attention as my heart pounded in my chest.

However, I quickly found myself disgusted and in disbelief (yet again) at Mr. Cuomo and CNN when he proclaimed…

Read the entire column here.

In the aftermath of Hurricane Irma, a house slides into the Atlantic Ocean in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, on Monday, September 11.


Fans are really ticked at the NFL

Scratch that. Ticked isn’t really the word.

Try angry.




And downright acrimonious.


Consider social media. The Facebook pages of NFL teams are lighting up with negative comments by the thousands after the weekend’s protests during the National Anthem.

“Introducing politics into today’s was the lowest behavior of any team. I’m no longer a Ravens fan after today. I will be notifying M&T Bank of my decision to pull out as well. If you don’t support my country, you & M&T Bank don’t deserve my support or my money either. Shame on you Baltimore Ravens!”
Ravens’ Facebook page

“You all forget who you represent. Not just yourselves. You represent the ravens, Baltimore, and America. And you embarrassed yourselves and us today. You not only broke the unity of us as Americans today, I think you broke the unity between Ravens players and Ravens fans.”
Ravens’ Facebook page

“I have been a Pittsburgh Steelers Fan for 60 years and Not so much anymore. I’m done. How dare you dis-respect our country like that. You only have one player that is a true American!” (referring to Steelers offensive lineman Alejandro Villanueva, a former Army Ranger who served three tours in Afghanistan. Villanueva was the lone Steelers player to emerge from the locker room and stand on the field during the anthem.)
Pittsburgh Steelers’ Facebook page

“You disrespected our Flag, our Veterans who fought for it and our Country and you did it on foreign soil. Not one more dime of my money! Not one more minute of my time!”
Jacksonville Jaguars Facebook, posted even though the Jaguars blew out the Jaguars in a game played in London

Protests were everywhere across the league Sunday, including Lambeau Field.

Photo: Stacy Revere / Getty Images

Jeff Wagner took up the topic on his WTMJ radio show this morning.

An elderly military veteran was disgusted, asking “How many (NFL players) served their country? How many put their lives on the line?”

And then a most stunning call came from a man who was taking down all his Packer memorabilia that filled a room in his house.

The same caller said he had at least $1,000 worth of Packer clothing that had been given to him as gifts. He was going to give it back to those who made the purchases and if he couldn’t return it all he was going to, remember this is a die-hard Packer fan, burn the rest.

Burn it.



Today’s highly interesting read (09/26/17): Hard Data, Hollow Protests Lives Matter protesters rally outside the Minnesota Vikings game on September 24th, 2017, at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minnesota.(Photo: Stephen Maturen/Getty Images)

Today’s read comes from Heather MacDonald, author of…

You can bet what she writes about will be ignored by the mainstream media.

The FBI released its official crime tally for 2016 today, and the data flies in the face of the rhetoric that professional athletes rehearsed in revived Black Lives Matter protests over the weekend.  Nearly 900 additional blacks were killed in 2016 compared with 2015, bringing the black homicide-victim total to 7,881.

Who is killing these black victims? Not whites, and not the police, but other blacks.

Read her entire column here.