Week-ends (02/16/19)

A look back at the people and events that made news the past week. Week-ends is a regular weekly feature of  This Just In…


Shawn Allen

Daniel Ritchie

Middle school boys


Gary Martin


Andrea Mitchell

Stephen Bonser


“Believe me, it hurts. Nobody forces us to be cops. We volunteer to do this job because we believe we make a difference. We believe we are a part of a greater good. We do this because it’s the right thing to do, not the easy thing to do.”
Milwaukee Police Chief Alfonso Morales speaking at the funeral of honored fallen Police Officer Matthew Rittner

“Matthew lived an extraordinary life as a son, as a brother, as a husband, as a father, a United States Marine, Milwaukee police officer, and a friend to many, many.”
Pastor Jerry Brooks at Rittner’s funeral

“We sit here with heavy hearts, trying to make sense of this. I can tell you this. It doesn’t make sense. It is not right.”
Milwaukee Police Lt. Derrick Harris, commander of the specialized patrol division, at Rittner’s funeral

“We have had better snow plowing.”
Milwaukee Alderman Michael Murphy

“Our operations almost always look horrible before they look good. We have a lot of new people. Some of these people, it’s a learning curve for them. Where I think we can do better is some of the curb-to-curb. Some of the new drivers are afraid to tug up against the curb. It’s scary. They don’t want to ruin the plow and the curb. We need to do better on that and corners. We need to dip in and out and around, so we are not leaving triangles.”
City of Milwaukee Department of Public Works director of operations Laura Daniels

“I’m going to be signing a national emergency … We’re talking about an invasion of our country with drugs, with human traffickers, with all types of criminals and gangs. Sadly, we’ll be sued and sadly it will go through a process and happily we’ll win, I think.”
President Donald Trump

“There is no national emergency. No one who subscribes to reality can claim otherwise … President Trump simply failed to get a deal to build his wasteful vanity wall.”
Sen. Patrick J. Leahy, D-Vt.

“El Paso used to have one of the highest crime rates in America. After that fence went up and separated Juárez, which still has an extremely high crime rate, the crime rates in El Paso are now some of the lowest in the country.”
What Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton told Trump

“I, too, want stronger border security, including a wall in some areas. But how we do things matters. Extraconstitutional executive actions are wrong, no matter which party does them.”
Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky

 “We would be idiots as Republicans not to support Donald Trump to try to build this wall anyway he can.”
GOP Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, once resistant to an emergency declaration, said he’s all for it

“I must have stood some three minutes by the counter … Nobody came after me, nobody yelled.”
Slovenian member of parliament Darij Krajcic, who walked out of a sandwich shop without paying after waiting for employees to stop talking and notice him. He said he did go back and pay, but after discussing the incident with colleagues, he apologized and resigned.

“You know here’s what bothers me. By the time we get to 2020, Donald Trump may not even be president. In fact, he may not even be a free person.”
Massachusetts Senator and Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren at a rally in Cedar Rapids, Iowa

“Among political professionals, there are deep concerns because we know the history. We have reason to be skeptical of the hype. We heard it with Hillary, and we saw it happened. And there’s a lot of reason to think he would wind up a significantly weaker candidate than Hillary.”
A Pennsylvania-based Democratic strategist, granted anonymity to speak candidly about Joe Biden. McClatchy News interviewed 31 Democratic strategists — pollsters, opposition research experts, media consultants, ex-party officials, and communications specialists — from across the country about a potential Biden presidential campaign.

“Heaven has a wall, a gate and a strict immigration policy. Hell has open borders. Let that sink in.”
A family-owned Christian grocery store with several locations in Southeast Arkansas dealt with backlash as customers argued a weekly ad mailer included this controversial political message. The ad book was sent to four Mac’s Cashsaver stores in Arkansas. According to the store, the mailer typically includes a religious or political message.

“There is a narrative being propagated by the liberal media that the right is ‘obsessed’ with Rep. Ocasio Cortez. That’s not accurate or fair. Republicans are tracking her rising star because she has a prominent, albeit severely misguided, voice. They would be fools not to examine her and her allies’ agenda.

“The Democrats made a grave mistake in disregarding the populist momentum President Trump generated during his election campaign. The Republicans should not return the favor and discount The New Extreme Left’s ideas, no matter how wrong they are.”
William J. “Bill” Bennett, former U.S. Secretary of Education for President Ronald Reagan

“The wall will be built. Make no mistake about that. We will have a great big beautiful wall protecting our country from crime and disease and earthquakes and hurricanes and the measles. And there will be no skirting of that wall. We’re going to make ladders and shovels illegal in border- states. Canadian borders too. Puerto Rico.

“And we’ll have cheaper, better health care for everybody. The best health care. It’s easy. You know it and I know it. The only reason we haven’t done it before is I’m forced to work with idiots. People who won’t do what I tell them to do. Trust me. I know more than anybody else. A lot more. These so-called experts are passive and naive. That’s the truth. Everybody knows it.

“It won’t be long before the yellow lines down the middle of our highways are outlined by real gold and double quarter-pounders with cheese pop right out of your phone and the chickens lay nothing but soft boiled eggs and people won’t need to go on holidays, because everywhere in this great nation will be a vacation spot. Just wait and see, it’s going to be amazing.”
Wisconsin-born columnist and comic Will Durst in a piece previewing the State of the Union. The satire had Durst writing he got an excerpt  of the speech that he called “The State of The Donald.”

“Sex offenders are not second-class citizens. The Constitution protects their liberty and dignity just as it protects everyone else’s. An offender must report to the police every time he connects to a Wi-Fi spot at a new McDonald’s, every time he uses a new computer terminal at a public library, every time he borrows a smartphone to read the news online, and every time he anonymously comments on a news article. Every time he walks into a new coffee shop, he must determine whether opening his laptop is worth the hassle of reporting.” Those burdens “chill a wide swath of protected speech under penalty of felony,” Watkins says, making the law “facially overbroad.”
U.S. District Judge W. Keith Watkins in a recent decision overturning two provisions of the Alabama Sex Offender Registration and Community Notification Act (ASORCNA) on First Amendment grounds

“I must have stood some three minutes by the counter … Nobody came after me, nobody yelled.”
Slovenian member of parliament Darij Krajcic, who walked out of a sandwich shop without paying after waiting for employees to stop talking and notice him. He said he did go back and pay, but after discussing the incident with colleagues, he apologized and resigned.


Killer of MPD officer Matthew Rittner pleads not guilty


Here’s a list of the 31 national emergencies that have been in effect for years


The state GOP refuses to honor Colin Kaepernick


The wedding cake made entirely out of cheese

More women working; productive farmers; smartphones; and mattresses

This week’s highly interesting reads:

19TH UPDATE: Today’s highly interesting read (08/08/17): Have Smartphones Destroyed a Generation?

Today’s highly interesting read (02/14/19): American Farmers So Productive That We Went From Starvation To Obesity

Today’s highly interesting read (02/13/19): Once upon a display mattress

Today’s highly interesting read (02/12/19): ‘More Women in the Workforce Than Ever Before’

The Barking Lot – America’s Finest Dog Blog (02/16/19)

The Barking Lot is a regular weekly feature of This Just In…Written by my lovely wife, Jennifer and me.  It opens with the weekend dog walking forecast followed by the main blog from dog lover, Jennifer. Then it’s DOGS IN THE NEWS and our close. Enjoy!

THE WEEKEND DOG-WALKING FORECAST: We grade the weather outlook for taking your pet outdoors.

TODAY: Cloudy. High of 26.  “D”

  UPDATED: WEATHER ADVISORY REMAINS IN EFFECT FROM 6 AM THIS MORNING TO 6 AM CST MONDAY. Snow expected. Total snow accumulations of 3 to 6 inches expected in portions of southeast Wisconsin. High of 26.  “F”

Now, here’s my lovely wife, Jennifer, with this week’s main blog.

On the surface it sounds like a terrific idea.

Earlier this month in Madison, the city county liaison committee took up the question of whether city employees would be allowed to bring their pet dogs to work in city offices.Image may contain: sky and outdoor
Madison’s City County Building near the State Capitol

Deciding the matter was no slam dunk. The committee voted yes, but the vote was 4-3.

“Dogs tend to calm people, make people more friendly,” said Enis Ragland, Deputy Mayor of Administration and Finance. “It brings on collegiality, improves the work flow in offices and there are studies that show that, and they’re just fun to have around, and it relaxes people.”

Do you agree? Read the quotes again. Carefully.

More than 500 city of Madison employees took part in a survey about how they felt having dogs in offices in the City County Building. Of the 529 who participated, 54.25% said they supported the proposal, 35.35% said they did not, and 10.40% said they didn’t care one way or the other.

“Dogs tend to calm people, make people more friendly, and they’re just fun to have around, and it relaxes people.”

But even this dog lover has to admit that might be true for some, but not for all.

Why would anyone object? For several reasons, actually. According to that survey here were the top worries beginning with the biggest:

1) Work distractions

2) Hygiene

3) Safety

4) Noise

Some respondents were also concerned about allergies.

What about rules?

Dogs must be spayed or neutered. Dogs must have had their shots. Dogs would have to be licensed. Dogs would have to be well-behaved (Who makes that determination and how?). Dogs must have no fleas. Dogs would not be allowed in cafeterias or common conference rooms. Dogs must have insurance. Dogs could not be unattended.

Remember, this is Madison we’re talking about. Because of all those regulations the thought by city officials is that few dogs will actually show up.

Here’s another factor to consider.

“My concern would be the lack of training or control or sometimes responsibility that people have with their general pet dogs,” said Nicole Meadowcroft, president of Custom Canines Service Dog Academy.

“They don’t have the training and socialization that our service dogs do, so I worry about the safety of our service dogs and our clients out there working. The worst case scenario would be dogs fighting, somebody getting bit trying to break up a dog fight, so I question who is going to be responsible, who would carry the insurance,” she said. “If one of our service dogs gets attacked by another dog, that’s a huge fine for that other pet owner, but also it could mean instant retirement and a loss of enhancement for someone with a disability.”

Rules and regulations? There’s more.

“The next step is to complete the drafting of an administrative procedure memorandum, which is the rules that city employees work by, managers work by,” said Enis Ragland, Deputy Mayor of Administration and Finance. “Once those are drafted we’ll let the mayor’s management team take a final look at them to see if there’s any issues they may have with them. Then we’ll implement them in this building and in all city facilities where it’s feasible.”

Halley’s Comet could strike before that all happens.

Sounds like this idea wasn’t vetted properly or efficiently.

Take Your Dog To Work Day? You betcha.

Take Your Dog To Work Every Day? Probably not.
—Jennifer Fischer

Thanks, Jennifer.

Time now for DOGS IN THE NEWS, canines that made headlines the past week.

Fatal experiments on dogs are happening at the VA. Now, the inspector general is investigating.

Sheriff: Dog named Donald Trump wasn’t killed over politics.

Oregon’s governor lost a vote on a dog, and learned a lesson.

80-Pound Dog Attacks a Top Runner a Mile Away From Half Marathon Finish.

‘My Owner Will Be Back Soon. Don’t Worry! Tesla Just Launched ‘Dog Mode’

Hang on to that pooch: Cleveland forecasters issue “Small Dog Advisory” on blustery day.

Column: What to do for your dog so they’re happy when you’re not around.

‘King’ the wire fox terrier claims Best in Show title at 143rd Westminster Dog Show.

Remember George H.W. Bush’s service dog Sully?



Don Chatten, 49, is now being called a “hero” after he took quick action to save a small dog that had fallen into the icy waters near the Bark Park at Ellicott Creek Park in Tonawanda, NY. Chatten told 7 Eyewitness News that another person in the park asked him to help find a missing small dog just after 3 p.m. Thursday afternoon. Shortly afterwards, Chatten’s own two dogs spotted the small animal in the water. Chatten said he first called for 911 but decided to take action fearing the little dog would not last long. Hhe tried to crawl across the ice but it gave way and plunged him waist-deep into the water. “I knew it wasn’t real deep in this part because I use to come here when I was a kid,” Chatten said. He was able to rescue the dog and return him to his owner. Photo: WKBW-TV

Mystery of sad dog abandoned on beach with Valentine’s Day balloon solved

Gallery: Pups groomed for success at Westminster dog show

We close as we always do with our closing video, and we’ve got a bunch.

First, genetic tests for dogs have surged in popularity, but as NBC News reports, experts have warnings.

How about some cuteness…

King was the king of New York.

Let’s go behind the scenes at the big dog show.

Here’s a tale of two dogs. First, the amazing Gabby captured the 8″ division title at the 2019 WKC Masters Agility. She ran a time of 39.31 for the win.

That was Gabby.

This was Winky.

Last video?

No way. There’s one more!

Is this the dog video of all dog videos?


That’s it for this week.

Thanks for stopping by.

Please consider passing this along to other dog lovers you know. We’d really appreciate it!

See ya, BARK, next Saturday morning!

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The Best Cartoons of the Week (02/16/19)


Gary Varvel

A.F. Branco

A.F. Branco

Gary McCoy

Tom Stiglich

Michael Ramirez

Henry Payne

A.F. Branco

Michael Ramirez

A.F. Branco


Tom Stiglich


Steve Kelley


Sean Delonas


Robert Ariail


Sean Delonas

Mike Lester

Steve Kelley

Chip Bok


Henry Payne

A.F. Branco


Tom Stiglich


Steve Kelley


Chip Bok


Goodnight everyone, and have a fairy tale weekend!

Every Friday night we smooth our way into the weekend with music, the universal language. These selections demonstrate that despite what is being passed off as art today, there is plenty of really good music available. Come along and enjoy.

Our theme this week is music of romance.

Wait. Wasn’t Valentine’s Day yesterday? True.

But lots of lovers are celebrating today and/or this weekend. So we think it’s more than appropriate to dedicate this February 15th blog feature to music that gets the heart beating.

The question is, what kind?

We can and have done in the past classic love songs. Pretty love songs. Sultry love songs.

How about a specific type that can be transformed into all kinds of musical genres. Why? Simple. Because it’s so good, and so timeless.

So, let’s revise our above opening. Our theme this week is Disney music of romance.

Let’s get started.

Little Texas is a band from Nashville that started out when the guys were in their early 20’s. They were known as “the hardest-working band in country music,” and rightfully so, doing more than 300 shows a year without a bus, a driver, and no recording label to support them.

Their first album had five singles reach the top of the charts. Their second album produced three No. 1 singles, including my favorite, “God Blessed Texas.” Several awards followed.

The band called it quits in the mid-90’s, but a la Brett Favre, are back together and touring.

In 1996 Little Texas was one of the artists on the album The Best of Country Sing the Best of Disney.

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Several country stars and groups did country versions of Disney songs.

Admit it. The first time you saw “The Little Mermaid” you were right there with Sebastian, urging Prince Eric in that boat to just lean over, doggone it,  and do it.

Kiss the girl.

Kiss the girl.


Image result for image, photo, picture, disney, kiss the girl

Note the album/CD cover.

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It’s a spin-off of a famous still picture taken from  “Fantasia” in 1940 where Mickey shakes hand with conductor Leopold Stokowski.


Coming soon…

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Billy Joel makes his only Midwest performance of 2019 at Miller Park Friday, April 26th. This will be Joel’s first appearance at the ballpark. He will celebrate his 70th birthday on May 9, 2019.

Having sold 150 million records over the past quarter century, scoring 33 consecutive Top 40 hits, Billy Joel ranks as one of most popular recording artists and respected entertainers in history. The singer/songwriter/composer is the sixth best-selling recording artist of all time and the third best-selling solo artist.

This probably won’t be on the Miller Park playlist, but it fits this week’s theme. From a  1991 collection, a Grammy nominated track has Joel performing  not just the best Disney song ever, but what is truly one of the best songs, period.

Image result for image, photo, picture, simply mad about the mouse

When it comes to Disney films (Pixar, Marvel, and Lucasfilm) 2019 looks to be a gigantic year with movies like Captain Marvel, Dumbo, Avengers: Endgame, Toy Story 4, The lion King, Artemis Fowl, Frozen 2, Star Wars Episode 9, and a new live-action version of Aladdin.

Mena Massoud will portray Aladdin and Naomi Scott is Jasmine with Will Smith taking on the role of The Genie.

May 24th to be exact.

Not sure if that popular song will be part of the new movie, but if so, these two will be tough to top.

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No photo description available.

A blog about Disney love music absolutely must include this charming young lady.

Cinderella, you’re as lovely as your name
Cinderella, you’re a sunset in a frame
Though you’re dressed in rags
You wear an air of queenly grace
Anyone can see a throne
Would be your proper place

Cinderella, if you give your heart a chance
It will lead you, to the kingdom of romance
There you’ll see your dreams unfold
Cinderella, Cinderella
In the sweetest story ever told

“Tribute to a Classic: Cinderella,” a version of the soundtrack to Cinderella was released  in 1995. Artists included Linda Ronstadt, Bobby McFerrin, James Ingram and Take 6.

Also on the CD were jazz musicians David Benoit on piano and David Sanborn on saxophone who get together on a lovely Cinderella Medley: Cinderella/A Dream Is a Wish Your Heart Make/Oh Sing Sweet Nightingale.

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As I mentioned earlier, Disney music can be transformed into just about any genre as evidenced above in serious high quality material. We don’t even consider rap or metal. And we make no apologies.

That’s it for this week.


Sleep well.

Have a great weekend.

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There’s this restaurant at the Portifino Bay Resort at Universal Orlando.

No, it doesn’t rhyme with dice.


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I’m sure it’s wonderful. When Jennifer and I were courting (love that expression) we stayed at that marvelous hotel and dined at the restaurant when it was called Delfino Riviera.

It was magnifico!

One who thinks he cannot get a great dining experience at a theme park or theme park hotel is sadly mistaken.

As we enjoyed a fantastic evening a strolling guitarist made his way around the tables. He wondered if we had any requests and we asked for “Bella Notte.”  And he obliged. What a great song.

We close with Steve Tyrell, he of the voice of a suave Dr. John.

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Accidental Romance

Friday Night Forgotten Oldie: They just kept going

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This is the week of amour. Tonight’s oldie was one of my Dad’s favorites.

At the 1977 American Music Awards, presented on January 31, 1977, Lou Rawls was nominated in the Soul/R & B Single category.

Frank Sinatra once described Rawls as having “the classiest singing and silkiest chops in the singing game.”

During the awards program Rawls sang what would be his most successful hit. The performance that night was anything but typical.

Were you watching on TV?

Do you remember?

Glen Campbell does the introduction.

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The back-up singers and orchestra never quit. Neither did Rawls.

That same night…

“You’ll Never Find Another Love Like Mine” was a No. 1 R&B hit that also rose to No. 2 on the pop charts.

Rawls died of lung cancer at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles in January 2006. He was 72.


19TH UPDATE: Today’s highly interesting read (08/08/17): Have Smartphones Destroyed a Generation?

Previously on This Just In…

The update.

Other articles in this series:

Have Smartphones Destroyed a Generation?

’Wait Until 8th’ pledge asks parents to hold off on giving smartphones to kids

How smartphones hijack our brains

Smartphones really are dangerous for our kids (they put them at risk for suicide and more)

Is the Answer to Phone Addiction a Worse Phone?

Smartphone habits of kids becoming a danger to Milwaukee’s public education

Commentary: Why quitting smartphones is the new quitting smoking

Teens who spend less time in front of screens are happier — up to a point, new research shows

Phone-addicted teens aren’t as happy as those who play sports and hang out IRL, new study suggests

Screen addiction is destroying travel. Here’s how to stop it

How to break up with your phone

Exclusive: Nearly half of parents worry their child is addicted to mobile devices

 I wish my mom’s phone wasn’t invented, 2nd grader writes in school project

Parents this common habit is making your kids act like monsters

We Need to Talk About Farting on the Subway

More Screen Time For Teens Linked To ADHD Symptoms

Smartphones raising a mentally fragile generation

Your Smartphone Reduces Your Brainpower, Even If It’s Just Sitting There

Today’s highly interesting read (02/14/19): American Farmers So Productive That We Went From Starvation To Obesity

Cows UW-Madison-5381

Today’s read is serious stuff, about a topic I rarely, if ever, blog about: farming.

It was inspired by Wisconsin news from earlier this week:

According to the state’s agriculture department, there were 8,110 herds milking in Wisconsin during the first week of January. That’s a drop of 691 since the same time a year earlier.

Why is this important and eye-opening? Because agriculture is extremely important economically to Wisconsin.

Today’s read is from Jim Huntzinger, the President and Founder of Lean Frontiers, Inc., which develops knowledge and learning communities on the Lean Enterprise for business and industry.

Huntzinger has a very interesting take on the current state of farming.

 We are so prosperous that we eat too much as an entire nation.  Obesity is a problem among our poor.  Understand that statement – obesity is a problem among our poor.  When in the history of the world has obesity been an issue for the poor?   Never until the prosperity of the Shining City.  For the first time, a paradox exists between the poor and provisions – the poor of the United States are overfed.

The American agricultural industry has achieved productivity improvements at a scale unprecedented in the history of civilization. While the storyline goes as such; the America family farmer continues to decrease in number. This is because the American family farmer is a productivity machine. Simply put – not as many are needed to produce food products for more people at less cost..

There’s more and you can read it all here.

When will a WI media outlet examine this particular issue and perspective?

Don’t hold your breath.

The Port Washington-Nicolet player story

Still developing.

It’s a story because it’s driven by a total overreaction led by hyper-sensitive folks.

NOTE to Port Washington High School intelligentsia: Nothing to apologize for. The Port students waved a picture the Nicolet player posted on social media of himself!

I’m curious  to see how talk radio responds, especially Steve Scafiddi at WTMJ who can be squishy (suffers too often from trying to win over both sides). If he tends to side with the black Nicolet player and you disagree with him, I wonder if he will he call you an idiot?

Let’s do it. Let’s play FINAL JEOPARDY!

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, yes it’s that time…..time once again for another This Just In edition of:


Are you ready?

Well then, let’s play!

Today’s Final Jeopardy category is:


Now, you know how this works.

In a moment, I’ll give you the Final Jeopardy clue.

You will have 30 seconds (if you play fair, that will be when the music runs out) to come up with an answer and remember, players……… your answer must be in the form of a question.


Here’s your clue.

58% of Americans say they do this before they even get out of bed in the morning.

Good luck. Please click.

Alright players, time’s up.

Again, today’s Final Jeopardy category is:


The Final Jeopardy answer was:

58% of Americans say they do this before they even get out of bed n the morning.

The correct question is:

What is check their e-mails?

The details.