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3rd February 2013

12:00pm: Gun responsibility

President Obama asked gun control advocates to do more listening.
I'd like for gun control and gun rights advocates to both do more listening.
Guns don't kill people. Guns don't keep people safe.
People kill people. People keep people safe.

Gun laws don't kill people. Gun laws don't keep people safe.
People kill people. People keep people safe.


Posted via LiveJournal app for iPhone.

17th January 2013

11:54pm: Policy

Then Jesus asked them, "When I sent you without purse, bag or sandals, did you lack anything?"
"Nothing," they answered. He said to them, "But now if you have a purse, take it, and also a bag; and if you don't have a sword, sell your cloak and buy one. It is written: 'And he was numbered with the transgressors'; and I tell you that this must be fulfilled in me. Yes, what is written about me is reaching its fulfillment." The disciples said, "See, Lord, here are two swords."
"That is enough," he replied.
Luke 22:35-38 NIV84

When Jesus' followers saw what was going to happen, they said, "Lord, should we strike with our swords?"
And one of them struck the servant of the high priest, cutting off his right ear. But Jesus answered, "No more of this!" And he touched the man's ear and healed him.
Luke 22:49-51 NIV84

"Put your sword back in its place," Jesus said to him, "for all who draw the sword will die by the sword."
Matthew 26:52 NIV84

Then Jesus said to the chief priests, the officers of the temple guard, and the elders, who had come for him, "Am I leading a rebellion, that you have come with swords and clubs?"
Luke 22:52 NIV84

Posted via LiveJournal app for iPhone.

16th January 2013

8:30am: That is Enough

Then Jesus asked them, "When I sent you without purse, bag or sandals, did you lack anything?"
"Nothing," they answered. He said to them, "But now if you have a purse, take it, and also a bag; and if you don't have a sword, sell your cloak and buy one. It is written: 'And he was numbered with the transgressors'; and I tell you that this must be fulfilled in me. Yes, what is written about me is reaching its fulfillment." The disciples said, "See, Lord, here are two swords."
"That is enough," he replied.
Luke 22:35-38 NIV84
When Jesus' followers saw what was going to happen, they said, "Lord, should we strike with our swords?"
And one of them struck the servant of the high priest, cutting off his right ear. But Jesus answered, "No more of this!" And he touched the man's ear and healed him.
Luke 22:49-51 NIV84

"Put your sword back in its place," Jesus said to him, "for all who draw the sword will die by the sword."
Matthew 26:52 NIV84

Then Jesus said to the chief priests, the officers of the temple guard, and the elders, who had come for him, "Am I leading a rebellion, that you have come with swords and clubs?"
Luke 22:52 NIV84

Posted via LiveJournal app for iPhone.

5:48am: Work and Help; Toil and Strife
As I understand it, work and help were always intended for our lives, but toil and strife were aftermath of rebellion.

----------------------------------
The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it.
The Lord God said, "It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him."
Genesis 2:15, 18 NIV84
----------------------------------
"Cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil you will eat of it all the days of your life."
"By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground."
Genesis 3:17b, 19a NIV84

15th January 2013

1:40am: 1 John 5:16 - sin that leads to death; suicide intervention
"If anyone sees his brother commit a sin that does not lead to death, he should pray and God will give him life. I refer to those whose sin does not lead to death. There is a sin that leads to death. I am not saying that he should pray about that."
NIV (©1984)

Many reflections on 1 John 5:16 search for some hidden meaning to the phrases "sin that does not lead to death" and "sin that leads to death". Sometimes this scripture is used to promote the idea of an "unforgivable sin", with some believers left to later wondering whether their own future in the mercy of God is at risk due to this unnamed sin for which no pardon can be given.

Perhaps the meaning is more natural and less mystical.

"I am not saying he should pray about that [considering it the conclusion of the matter, as if any other intervention is unwarranted]." Pray, but not to excuse yourself from anything further.

Consider the persecution of early Christians. A believer has been warned that dangerous persecution is coming, but refuses to take action to deliver their family to safety. Don't just pray about it; pray and intervene.

A more grim possibility: in exchange for personal safety a believer may have betrayed other believers. That sin could lead to the death of those betrayed. Don't just pray - pray and intervene. Intervene for the betrayer, and those in jeopardy.

Consider the parable of the Good Samaritan. Did the Levite or Priest pray for the man that had fallen into the hands of robbers? We know they didn't intervene. The Samaritan intervened.

If one of you says to them, "Go in peace; keep warm and well fed," but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it?
James 2:16

A blessing, with no other nuthin'! What good is it? A prayer, with no other nuthin'! What good is it?

Philippians 4:6 instructs to bring every request to God in prayer; I've come to believe that 1 John 5:16 means that in some cases prayer will not be the end of the matter for me.

My view of suicide intervention has been shaped in part by 1 John 5:16. Some people believe and promote that suicide intervention can only delay a suicide; same manner or different, sooner or later the suicide will be completed. Hogwash! I always try to correct such general statements when I hear them. Some people may resist and some situations may preclude any intervention, but I cannot abandon my belief that lives can be saved by intervention, nor the memories of the second chances that I myself have seen embraced.

Peace!

3rd January 2013

12:06pm: Gun Collection - Well... Gun Stats and Policy Collection
http://www.freakonomics.com/2007/03/28/editorials-dont-kill-people/
http://www.freakonomics.com/2007/07/05/forget-about-having-your-friends-over-for-dinner-in-missouri-its-your-enemies-you-want-to-invite/
http://www.freakonomics.com/2007/09/10/guns-in-america/
http://www.freakonomics.com/2008/08/22/whats-your-best-idea-to-cut-gun-deaths-a-freakonomics-quorum/
http://www.freakonomics.com/2007/09/10/guns-in-america/
http://www.freakonomics.com/2012/12/05/homicide-victims-rarely-talk-to-police-and-other-horrible-headlines/

http://www.chicagomag.com/Chicago-Magazine/August-2006/The-Shootout/

http://smartgunlaws.org/straw-purchases-policy-summary/
http://smartgunlaws.org/gun-deaths-and-injuries-statistics/#footnote_22_5975

http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/misc/RL32842.pdf
http://www.mayorsagainstillegalguns.org/downloads/pdf/maig_mimeo_revb.pdf
http://freedomsadvocate.com/files/ref/FBi-ViolentEncounters-AStudyofFeloniousAssaultsonAmericasLawEnforcementOfficers-2003.pdf

Investigating the Link Between Gun Possession and Gun Assault
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2759797/

Firearm Retailers' Willingness to Participate in an Illegal Gun Purchase</a>
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2937134/

Rates of Household Firearm Ownership and Homicide Across US Regions and States, 1988–1997
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1447364/

Firearm availability and unintentional firearm deaths, suicide, and homicide among 5-14 year olds.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11834986

Firearm availability and suicide, homicide, and unintentional firearm deaths among women.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11937613

Factors associated with state variations in homicide, suicide, and unintentional firearm deaths
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15186014

Clinical Psychologists' Firearm Risk Management Perceptions and Practices
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2816245/pdf/10900_2009_Article_9200.pdf</a>

Clinical Psychologists' Firearm Risk Management Perceptions and Practices
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2816245/pdf/10900_2009_Article_9200.pdf</a>

The Effectiveness of Policies and Programs that Attempt to Reduce Firearm Violence: A Meta-Analysis
http://cad.sagepub.com/content/58/2/222

School Shootings and Lessons Learned
http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/776891

Murder-Suicide: A Review of the Recent Literature
http://www.jaapl.org/content/37/3/371.full.pdf

American Roulette: Murder-Suicide in the United States
http://www.vpc.org/studies/amroul2012.pdf

Gun Deaths Outpace Motor Vehicle Deaths in the DMV in 2010
http://www.vpc.org/studies/dmv.pdf

Gun Deaths Outpace Motor Vehicle Deaths in 10 States in 2009
http://www.vpc.org/studies/gunsvscars.pdf

Suicide in Mass Murderers and Serial Killers
http://www.suicidology-online.com/pdf/SOL-2010-1-19-27.pdf

http://www.coconino.edu/business/facilities/security/SECURITYPROGRAMSPROCEDURES/Documents/How_to_Survive_an_Active_Shooter.pdf</a>
Current Mood: anxious

13th August 2012

1:29am: Voter ID
1. I've never seen any indication that in-person impersonation is anything but a small portion of election fraud.
2. Fake IDs ain't that hard.  After 3.5 years, many Americans still believe that the President of the United States is presenting fake ID.
3. If "you get what you pay for", what would the tax payers really be getting by implementing the Wisconsin Voter ID law?
4. ALEC no longer lists voter ID as one of its policy strategy goals.  I wonder why?  
"The News21 report is based on a national public-records search in which reporters sent thousands of requests to elections officers in all 50 states, asking for every case of alleged fraudulent activity - including registration fraud; absentee-ballot fraud; vote buying; false election counts; campaign fraud; the casting of ballots by ineligible voters, such as felons and noncitizens; double voting; and voter impersonation."
"The analysis of 2,068 reported fraud cases by News21, a Carnegie-Knight investigative reporting project, found 10 cases of alleged in-person voter impersonation since 2000."
"The analysis found that there is more alleged fraud in absentee ballots and voter registration than in any of the other categories. The analysis shows 491 cases of alleged absentee ballot fraud and 400 cases involving registration fraud. Requiring voters to show identification at the polls - the crux of most of the new legislation - would not have prevented those cases."
Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/nation/article/Voter-fraud-findings-question-ID-law-logic-3783305.php#ixzz23P6cuWUu

27th November 2011

2:54pm: Why no Recall Election Candidate?
norwood44 said on: November 27, 2011, 9:20 am

A Democrat has not stepped forward because the recall election is a long shot.


Lonny says: norwood44, on what do you base that conclusion?

As a counterargument, I submit the 2002 Milwaukee County pension scandal, the ensuing recall petition, and the special election following the resignation of Milwaukee County Excutive Ament. Given the circumstances, and that 100,000 signatures had been gathered by February 7th, I don't believe that the reason the State Representative Scott Walker waited to declare candidacy was that replacement was uncertain.


Milwaukee County Pension Scandal Timeline
http://www.wisn.com/news/1246471/detail.html

Jan. 10: First mention of recall effort. Two people fill out forms to begin recall process.

Jan. 12: First pension rally, unifying various recall efforts.

Feb. 5: Recall tops 85,000 signatures, thousands more than legally necessary.

Feb. 7: Recall effort hits organizers' goal of 100,000 signatures.

Feb. 9: Final scheduled recall rally takes place at Serb Hall

Feb. 15: Ament cancels lawsuit against recall group. Organizers formally turn in 181,957 signatures.


On February 25, 2002 a WISN article (http://www.wisn.com/news/1250271/detail.html) had this to say about the upcoming election:
'State Rep. Scott Walker formally entered the county executive race last week.'

That would mean that his candidacy was offical no earlier than February 18th - after the recall signatures had been turned in.

Here's a little extra credit.

http://scottwalker.sitebuilder.completecampaigns.com/sbcc/personalinfo.php?page=biography

'In 2002, Scott answered the call to lead the reform movement after the pension scandal in Milwaukee County was uncovered. He was the first person to rise and commit to challenging former County Executive Tom Ament when Ament attempted to legally challenge the recall petition signatures against him.

Within a month, more than 150,000 people signed recall petitions demanding their government back. Scott felt that a leader needed to emerge to lead the movement. He was inspired by the hope of the people involved in the recall effort that they could change the government – for the better.'


But the real kicker:

http://www.insidemilwaukee.com/Article/242011-TheGreatImposter

'Everyone remembers why he was elected Milwaukee County executive. There was universal outrage over the pension deal and the huge payouts to county employees. Walker vowed to reform the system.'

'As the reporter who first broke the pension story, I’ve watched closely to see what Walker would do to roll back the benefits, to lower the hit on taxpayers. I’m still waiting.'

'From the time he was elected, Walker has been remarkably uninterested in reforming the pension system.'

'Walker has been reluctant to pursue legal action against the Reinhart Boerner Van Deuren law firm for advice it gave county officials on the pension plan. The head of the Reinhart firm, it turns out, is state Republican Party chairman Rick Graber, who has provided major campaign dollars to Walker.'

'Walker repeatedly criticized the County Board for failing to get an independent audit of the benefits they passed but has never had such an analysis done.'

Read more: http://host.madison.com/wsj/news/local/govt-and-politics/elections/with-recall-election-probable-who-will-face-walker/article_00ecb390-1621-11e1-a404-001cc4c002e0.html?mode=comments#ixzz1ewQ38nWm
12:27pm: Is the 2011 Wisconsin Gubernatorial Recall Subverting an Election?

http://www.timnerenz.com/2011/11/bring-it.html?showComment=1322243045466#c7435900635866864420

Tim Nerenz said: 'This recall
process is not an election; it is a subversion of an election, and I will not
vote to subvert elections.'

Lonny Niederstadt says: 'Can you provide more of an explanation of this recall
process as subversion of an election?

Consider an employee - whether an individually contracted worker or one that is
union represented and under union contract.

It is perfectly reasonable for the contract to specify performance and
compliance reviews within the contract period, both at regular intervals and in
response to any particular event during the contract period. Job termination
can take place for poor performance, or violation of workplace rules.

Job termination in response to these reviews does not subvert the contract even
if it leads to termination before the completion of the contract term.

The Wisconsin State Constitution provisions for impeachment and recall were
already written at the time that Governor Walker campaigned and assumed his
current office. It is not the case that provisions for the impeachment of a
Governor were introduced after his election; I find this similar to allowing
for event-based compliance reviews. It is not the case that provisions for the
recall of a Governor were introduced after his election; I find this similar to
allowing for event-based performance reviews.'



12:10pm: Is Collective Bargaining a Right?
Wisconsin Legislative code 111.82 refers to 'the right to bargain collectively through representatives of their own choosing'.  This wording was left unchanged when 2011 Wisconsin Act 10 amended this passage.
Some ideologues argue that collective bargaining is not a right, their argument is not with me alone but with Wisconsin Law that is still in place today.  It is also an argument that these individuals should take up with the current administration that left this language in place as they amended the statutes according to their plan, and interpreted the effects of Act 10 while it was still a bill.
 
1.  Wisconsin Law passage referring to collective bargaining rights
https://docs.legis.wisconsin.gov/statutes/statutes/111/V/82
111.82  Rights of employees. Employees have the right of self-organization and the right to form, join, or assist labor organizations, to bargain collectively through representatives of their own choosing under this subchapter, and to engage in lawful, concerted activities for the purpose of collective bargaining or other mutual aid or protection. Employees also have the right to refrain from any or all of such activities. A general employee has the right to refrain from paying dues while remaining a member of a collective bargaining unit.
 
2.  Wisconsin Legislative Fiscal Bureau interprets Act 10
http://legis.wisconsin.gov/lfb/2011-13%20Budget/2011_03_09%20Modification%20to%20SS%20SB%2011_AB%2011.pdf
 
'Eliminate collective bargaining rights for employees of the University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics Authority.'
page 4
 
'The employee is not a state agency and employees of the Authority are not state employees.'
page 5
 
3.  UWHCA is surprised at elimination of CB rights
http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/host.madison.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/3/35/3355d8d4-3bb6-11e0-bd16-001cc4c002e0/4d5effa414583.pdf.pdf

4. Specifics of Act 10 repealing in whole collective bargaining rights
https://docs.legis.wisconsin.gov/2011/related/acts/10
Section 188. 111.02 (7) (a) 2., 3. and 4. of the statutes are repealed.
Section 229. 111.70 (3p) of the statutes is repealed.
Section 265. 111.81 (7) (g) of the statutes is repealed.
Section 279. 111.825 (1m) of the statutes is repealed.

6. Portions of legislation repealed by Act 10, as specified above, and their context.
http://law.justia.com/codes/wisconsin/2011/111/111.02.html
111.02(7)(a)
(a) "Employer" means a person who engages the services of an employee, and includes all of the following:
111.02(7)(a)1.
1. A person acting on behalf of an employer within the scope of his or her authority, express or implied.
111.02(7)(a)2.
2. The University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics Authority.
111.02(7)(a)3.
3. A local cultural arts district created under subch. V of ch. 229.
111.02(7)(a)4.
4. With respect to an employee under sub. (6) (am), the state, counties, and other administrative entities involved in regulation and subsidization of employees under sub. (6) (am).
 
 
http://law.justia.com/codes/wisconsin/2011/111/111.70.html
111.70(3p)
(3p) Child care provider services unit. A collective bargaining agreement that covers municipal employees performing services for the child care provider services unit under s. 49.826 shall contain a provision that permits the terms of the agreement to be modified with respect to hours and conditions of employment by a memorandum of understanding under s. 49.826 (3) (b) 4.
 
http://law.justia.com/codes/wisconsin/2011/111/111.81.html
111.81(7)(g)
(g) For purposes of this subchapter only, home care providers. This paragraph does not make home care providers state employees for any other purpose except collective bargaining.
 
 
http://law.justia.com/codes/wisconsin/2011/111/111.825.html
111.825(1m)
(1m) Collective bargaining units for employees in the classified service of the state who are employed by the University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics Board are structured with one collective bargaining unit for each of the following occupational groups:
111.825(1m)(a)
(a) Clerical and related.
111.825(1m)(b)
(b) Blue collar and nonbuilding trades.
111.825(1m)(c)
(c) Building trades crafts.
111.825(1m)(d)
(d) Security and public safety.
111.825(1m)(e)
(e) Technical.

21st November 2011

9:14pm: Excess Burden or Deadweight Loss (DWL)
'A Note on the Concept of Excess Burden', Hans Lind and Roland Granqvist, Economic Analysis & Policy, Vol. 40 No. 1, March 2010
http://www.eap-journal.com/archive/v40_i1_04-lind.pdf

Page 71
'If a concept is given a different interpretation by the public than by the economists, there is a large risk that politicians and the general public misunderstand what economists actually talk about and what economists are measuring when they use the concept of excess burden. Some economists have noted that there is such a misunderstanding. This misunderstanding seems to be a world-wide problem.'

'It can therefore be argued that the economists, by their move from the Pigovian to the modern interpretation of excess burden, have exaggerated the negative side effects of taxes and have given the public, and the politicians, a misleading picture of the consequences of major changes in the tax systems in many countries during the recent decades.'

8th October 2011

3:20pm: Hot coffee 2
While I can be persuaded that punitive damages should not in their entirety be awarded to the plaintiff in tort cases, I think that Liebeck vs McDonalds shows why punitive damages, even at times in amounts that are surprising, can be a necessary part of consumer protection.

Without at least the consideration of a considerable punitive damage award, Stella Liebeck would have been just number 701 - still representing just one out of every 24 million cups of coffee sold, and a number that McDonalds considered trivially different from zero.  This was the reason that Morgan requested a punitive damage based on coffee sales volume.

I think that punitive awards for willful endangering behavior should continue to be part of the legal recourse for consumers.  How much the plaintiff can receive, vs how much is directed to other purposes by the government, may be an interesting discussion.  

http://www.social.mtu.edu/faculty/speters/WrightsMcDonaldsfacts.htm

'McDonald's safety consultant, Robert Knaff, a human-factors engineer, asserted that 700 complaints, which was about one for every 24 million cups of McDonald's coffee sold, was "basically trivially different from zero."'

'The jury was further surprised to learn that during the prior ten years McDonald's had received more than 700 reports of coffee burns ranging from mild to third-degree, and had settled burn claims for amounts up to and exceeding $500,000.'

'Christopher Appleton, the McDonald's quality-assurance manager who previously had been deposed in the Texas case, testified that despite the complaints and despite knowing that its coffee was causing serious burns when spilled, McDonald's had not consulted burn experts and had no plans to change any of its coffee policies or procedures. "There are more serious dangers in restaurants," he said.'

'Adopting [Attorney for the Plaintiff] Morgan's suggestion that punitive damages be assessed equal to one or two days' worth of McDonald's coffee sales, which Morgan estimated to be $1.35 million per day, the jury awarded Stella $2.7 million in punitive damages. "It was our way of saying, 'Hey, open your eyes. People are getting burned'," juror Bell said later.'

7th September 2011

1:19am: Wisconsin Supreme Court Chief Justice Shirley Abrahamson
I am in favor of recall elections during contentious times as a means to establish the continued "consent of the governed" as discussed and detailed by the Wisconsin Constitution. A competing view has been very popular among Wisconsin conservatives this year: the official won the election, in the absence of malfeasance in office a change should only take place at the next election in the regular cycle.

Since the story of alleged physical aggression by one Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice against another, I've been quite surprised by reactions calling for resignation or removal of Wisconsin Supreme Court Chief Justice Shirley Abrahamson.

I fail to see how removal or resignation of a Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice with a history of election by wide margin of Wisconsin voters, and that has not been implicated with wrongdoing in any recent matter, would restore public confidence in Wisconsin.

Looking for a titanium spine? I think Shirley Abrahamson just might have one.

In 1999, 3 then-current Supreme Court Justices appeared in campaign advertisements for Sharren Rose, Chief Justice Abrahamson's opponent in that race.

These three Justices, together with a fourth Justice, had previously attempted to limit the powers of the Chief Justice by introducing a rule allowing committee to take on various duties and responsibilities.

In the face of this opposition in 1999, and having already won election to 2 ten-year terms on the Supreme Court, Chief Justice Shirley Abrahamson won election to another 10 year term by over 200,000 votes for a nearly 2-to-1 victory.

Consider that the two Justices not on record as opposing her power as Chief Justice or her re-election in 1999 were Justice David T. Prosser, Jr and Justice Ann Walsh Bradley!

Consider also the 2009 election for the current Wisconsin Supreme Court Chief Justice. She garnered nearly 60% of the vote, winning a whopping 80% of the reporting units/voting wards and 94% of the counties of Wisconsin!

As far as I know, in the 2009 election neither Koschnick nor any then-current or former Supreme Court Justices brought up the ten-year old opposition to the Chief Justice or its causes. I think they may all have learned a lesson - Wisconsin wants this judge on the Supreme Court.

Calls for the Chief Justice to resign or be removed, accompanied by an assertion that "unrest in the Supreme Court is the fault of the Chief Justice!" puzzle me. My response is to ask... uhhh... how much more unrest at the Capitol before the same voices call for the Governor to step down? Or the leader of either of the legislative bodies?

***

Regarding the 2009 Supreme Court Justice Election
http://elections.state.wi.us/subcategory.asp?linksubcatid=2554&linkcatid=2675&linkid=155&locid=47

The individual vote tallies from 793864 votes.
Abrahamson: 473712 (59.7%)
 Koschnick: 319706 (40.3%)
   Scattering: 446

Broken down by winner of the 3413 reporting units.
Abrahamson: 2736 (80.2%)
  Koschnick: 640 (18.8%)
        Tied: 37 (10.8%)

Broken down by county:
Abrahamson: 68 (94.4%)
 Koschnick: 4* (5.6%)

*Jefferson, Ozaukee, Washington, Waukesha

***
Regarding the 1999 Supreme Court Justice Election

The February 4, 1999 Wisconsin State Journal contains an article by Cary Segall, titled: "Bablitch Leading Trio Working to Oust Abrahamson".
This article reports the support efforts of Justices Bill Bablitch, Pat Crooks and Jon Wilcox for Sharon Rose, the challenger in the Supreme Court Justice election that was upcoming at the time.

The Saturday February 13, 1999 Wisconsin State Journal contains an article by Cary Segall, titled: "Four Tried to Reduce Powers of the Chief Justice".

According to this article, drafts of a rule proposed by Justices Bill Bablitch, Pat Crooks, Don Steinmetz and Jon Wilcox were made public Friday, February 12, 1999 after an open records request by the Wisconsin State Journal and other newspapers.

A six page statement signed by Justices Bill Bablitch, Pat Crooks, Don Steinmetz and Jon Wilcox was released Saturday February 13, 1999.
The Chippewa Herald on Sunday February 14, 1999 included an AP story titled "Supreme Court judges file grievance over Chief Justice" referring to this statement.

http://chippewa.com/article_b420b575-7724-5a45-a34c-7a99db8cc546.html

According to June 1, 2008 Wisconsin State Journal article "Unseating Abrahamson from State Supreme Court a Daunting Challenge", the 1999 race saw a combined total of nearly $1.4 million raised. This article states that Abrahamson raised $745,996 - leaving approximately $650,000 raised by the challenger Rose.

http://host.madison.com/business/b2b/article_a4e6b6fa-bd79-5c0c-80fe-b576861420ef.html

The Marquette Law Review, Volume 85 Spring 2002 Number 3 contained the Kearney and Eisenberg article "The Print Media and Judicial Elections: Some Case Studies from Wisconsin". On page 607, the passage below refers to the 1999 Supreme Court race, which was decided with results of 481,281 (63.5%) for Abrahamson to 276,584 (36.5%) for Rose.

"The 1999 Wisconsin Supreme Court race proved memorable. This is not because the vote was close. Shirley S. Abrahamson, the incumbent chief justice of the state's highest court, defeated Green Bay lawyer Sharren B. Rose by a nearly two-to-one margin. The vote was sufficiently lopsided that Rose garnered a majority of the vote in only one of the seventy-two counties in the state."

I would really like to see a copy of that 1999 six page statement signed by Justices Bill Bablitch, Pat Crooks, Don Steinmetz and Jon Wilcox.

Six pages, signed by four Supreme Court Justices, three of whom supported her challenger - yet a nearly 2 to 1 victory statewide for Chief Justice Abrahamson? A victory that was consistent across every Wisconsin county save one?!?

I'd also really like to see the draft of the rule with which they tried to reduce the powers of the Chief Justice. I'd probably have to search through microfiche to get those documents... so I might have to survive without them.

***

14th August 2011

2:17am: Wisconsin Supreme Court Chief Justice Shirley Abrahamson

http://host.madison.com/wsj/news/local/crime_and_courts/article_bf532586-c54e-11e0-9f5f-001cc4c002e0.html?mode=story

              lonnyniederstadt
said on: August 14, 2011, 1:33 am
tomtom33 said on: August 13, 2011, 2:49 pm
"As long as people like to bring up Prosser's background, wouldn't it be fair to examine Shirley's? Was there a reason that she was opposed in her last election by the sitting Chief Justice and several other members of the Court including Dem justices?"

Chief Justice Shirley Abrahamson WAS the sitting Chief justice in 2009, the last election she won to a 10 year term. She was appointed to the Supreme Court in 1976, and has won elections to 10 year terms in 1979, 1989, 1999, and 2009. She has served as Chief Justice since 1996. Other basic information can be found here:
http://www.wicourts.gov/about/judges/supreme/abrahamson.htm

The February 4, 1999 Wisconsin State Journal contains an article by Cary Segall, titled: "Bablitch Leading Trio Working to Oust Abrahamson".
This article reports the support efforts of Justices Bill Bablitch, Pat Crooks and Jon Wilcox for Sharon Rose, the challenger in the Supreme Court Justice election that was upcoming at the time.

The Saturday February 13, 1999 Wisconsin State Journal contains an article by Cary Segall, titled: "Four Tried to Reduce Powers of the Chief Justice".

According to this article, drafts of a rule proposed by Justices Bill Bablitch, Pat Crooks, Don Steinmetz and Jon Wilcox were made public Friday, Feburary 12, 1999 after an open records request by the Wisconsin State Journal and other newspapers.


A six page statement signed by Justices Bill Bablitch, Pat Crooks, Don Steinmetz and Jon Wilcox was released Saturday February 13, 1999.
The Chippewa Herald on Sunday February 14, 1999 included an AP story titled "Supreme Court judges file grievance over Chief Justice" refering to this statement.

http://chippewa.com/article_b420b575-7724-5a45-a34c-7a99db8cc546.html

According to June 1, 2008 Wisconsin State Journal article "Unseating Abrahamson from State Supreme Court a Daunting Challenge", the 1999 race saw a combined total of nearly $1.4 million raised. This article states that Abrahamson raised $745,996 - leaving approximately $650,000 raised by the challenger.

http://host.madison.com/business/b2b/article_a4e6b6fa-bd79-5c0c-80fe-b576861420ef.html

The Marquette Law Review, Volume 85 Spring 2002 Number 3 contained the Kearney and Eisenberg article "The Print Media and Judicial Elections: Some Case Studies from Wisconsin". On page 607, the passage below refers to the 1999 Supreme Court race, which was decided with results of 481,281 (63.5%) for Abrahamson to 276,584 (36.5%) for Rose.

"The 1999 Wisconsin Supreme Court race proved memorable. This is not because the vote was close. Shirley S. Abrahamson, the incumbent chief justice of the state's highest court, defeated Green Bay lawyer Sharren B. Rose by a nearly two-to-one margin. The vote was sufficiently lopsided that Rose garnered a majority of the vote in only one of the seventy-two counties in the state."

I would really like to see a copy of that 1999 six page statement signed by Justices Bill Bablitch, Pat Crooks, Don Steinmetz and Jon Wilcox.

Six pages, signd by four Supreme Court Justices, three of whom supported her challenger - yet a nearly 2 to 1 victory statewide for Chief Justice Abrahamson? A victory that was consistent across every Wisconsin county save one?!?

I'd also really like to see the draft of the rule with which they tried to reduce the powers of the Chief Justice. I'd probably have to search through microfiche to get those documents... so I might have to survive without them.

lonnyniederstadt said on: August 14, 2011, 2:09 am
@tomtom33 - I believe that election to a 10 year term - after already completing 2 ten year terms - winning by over 200,000 votes for a nearly 2-to-1 victory - indicates an interest by the people of Wisconsin that other justices learn how to work with this person (even if personality differences make that a challenge), as opposed to making comments about "destroying" them. Calls for the Chief Justice to resign, when they come from supporters of an embattled governor that won his election with 52% of the vote, puzzle me. Even more so when these calls include the argument that "unrest in the Supreme Court is the responsibility of the Chief Justice!" Because then I've just got to ask... uhhh... how much more unrest at the Wisconsin Capitol must there be before the same voices call for the Governor of Wisconsin to step down? If Chief Justice Abrahamson is somehow solely responsible for unrest on the court... I would be greatly interested in the well-reasoned argument that absolves the Governor from responsibility for the protests and the historic recall activity which continues to unfold.
 

9th August 2011

12:07am: She's tough
My daughter just might be tougher than I am emotionally.

Yesterday started before sunrise with a trip to the children's hospital for tonsil and adenoid removal. The elevators wouldn't even stop on the surgery floor because we got there a little too early :) . We started a 1000 piece puzzle in the reception area. Didn't get far, but when we left several hours later we could tell that other folks had continued where we left off. :) We met the surgery team, and I was with her in the OR as she was drifting off with the help of strawberry-bubblegum-tinge​d anesthetics, clutching her favorite blanket, a stuffed dog, and my hand. I whispered to her that I was still there as her eyes closed. "She's doing fine." "How are you, dad?" If I hadn't been lead out of the OR and back to the room to wait, I would have gotten lost. Two and a half hours later, she was taking a walk with the nurse to show she was ready to go home. She wanted to know when she could run again. I think she was especially concerned about that after she heard that she would be pushed back out to our vehicle in a wheelchair when we left for home. Several doses of liquid children's Tylenol and prescription pain medication throughout the day, and now she's sleeping peacefully. So... she's hanging in there... perhaps better than her dad... who is still sorting out his thoughts from the day... :)

3rd August 2011

5:52am: FAA Airport Certification Safety Inspectors among 4000 Furloughed
From the August 3, 2011 news:
United States Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood: "No safety issues will be compromised.  Flying is safe. Air traffic controllers are guiding airplanes. Safety inspectors are on duty and are doing their job. No one needs to worry about safety."

F.A.A. administrator Randy Babbitt, about airport safety inspectors: "The reason they are out on the job is because of the risk to operational safety or life and property.  We can neither pay them nor can we compensate them for expenses. We are depending and living on their professionalism at this point."

1st August 2011

11:27pm: Slava Martynov 20110801

Добрый день всем. К сожалению некогда было пообщаться​ с вами.... на прошлой неделе у моей мамы случился приступ...​. как сказали врачи "пред инсультное​ состояние"​ ее забрали в больницу и всю эту неделю был очень занят.... извините кому не ответил сразу.....​ молитесь за мою маму ей сейчас стало лучше, Бог дал ей еще один шанс и сестры с ней сейчас начали заниматься​ Библией...​.

Posted via LiveJournal app for iPhone.

29th July 2011

1:25pm: Using Quorum to Break Deadlock
Happy sysadmin day!
There is a deadlock in raising the United States debt limit in order to fund measures already approved by Congress.  Maybe I can help.

United States House of Representatives.
435 representatives.
Minimum quorum = 218 members.
Minimal passing vote count at minimal quorum is 110.
United States Senate.
100 senators.
Minimum quorum = 51 members.
Minimal passing vote count at minimal quorum is 26.
Don't want to vote for raising the debt ceiling? Protest such a move by not attending the meeting at which the vote will be called!  :)
 

1:22pm: The Relationship between Redshift and Time Dilation
Even before delving into cosmology, with only a knowledge of classical physics, the correlation of wavelength shift and time dilation for the observer when the emitter is accelerating away is intuitive.  It's preliminary validation is in the shifting sound waves of a car accelerating away from a stationary  observer.  On realizing that the beginning of the song would be synchronized for the emitter and the observer if they are next to each other, but the observed elapsed time of the song to the observer is dilated in comparison to the elapsed time for the emitter*, even without General Relativity the concept of stretched elapsed time for observed events is introduced.  The theory of General Relativity enhances and corrects the fundamental understanding when redshift implies accelerating increases in distance due to velocity approaching or exceeding the speed of light.  Observational support for redshift and time dilation has been provided by the study of type Ia supernovae light curves.  Quasars have to this point been an interesting problem for the model as both redshift and time dilation is less than expected.  Possible explanations have included a much more local location for quasars than previously believed, or a gravitational lensing effect that partially reverse redshift and time dilation for Earth observation of Quasars.

For full references, see my livejournal entry on time dilation below.  Although neither my post nor my references address the problems posed by quasars or proposed solutions to these problems.
http://lnieders.livejournal.com/56540.html

*In my classical physics example, the relative velocity and acceleration of the emitter to the observer is too small, as is the duration, to introduce any skew in ticking clocks held by observer and emitter.  The time dilation or increased elapsed time for the song for observer vs emitter is due only to the increasing distance for the sound waves to travel, and the accompanying travel time for the sound waves.  So the total elapsed time for the observer would be the elapsed time for the emitter plus the travel time for the sound waves at the final distance between emitter and observer.

27th July 2011

4:50pm: Time Dilation at Cosmological Event Horizon

 

Brian Greene, Professor of Mathematics and Physics at Columbia University in New York said:

"And actually, in the far future, everything we now see, except for our local galaxy and a region of galaxies will have disappeared. The entire universe will disappear before our very eyes, and it's one of my arguments for actually funding cosmology. We've got to do it while we have a chance." (ref 1)

A friend of mine recently made a similar statement, referencing the same possible future event. I had two responses, both perhaps funny to only me.

"I’ll believe it when I don’t see it."

"Actually, if this event occurs, I expect it to be a yawner. Due to time dilation, events that we observe will appear to take longer and longer. By the time the horizon is reached by these galaxies, I think it will be like turning off the TV when nothing good is on; no-one will care too much."

Its understandable to not think those comments are comedy gold, but my friend actually questioned the validity of my scientific understanding. Not too surprising – he questions my critical thinking all the time. But in this case he was claiming that time dilation in no way was relevant to the event horizon experienced as distant galaxies, with recessional velocities increasing at an accelerating rate due to the expansion of space-time, became increasingly red-shifted until they were no longer detectable.

Hmmmph. I contend that there is no cosmological model currently considered valid that allows for the separation of the concepts of cosmological redshift and cosmological time dilation. In fact, that seems quite clear.

Tamara Davis states it plainly:

"Like objects falling across the event horizon of a black hole, objects crossing our cosmological event horizon appear time dilated (from our perspective) as they approach the horizon."

(ref 2, page 11)

In a separate article, one of the most accessible definitions of time dilation appears:

"A process that takes Δt0 as measured by the emitter appears to take Δt = ζGRΔt0 as measured by the observer when the light emitted by that process reaches them." (ref 3, page 102)

In that article a significant amount of research from Leibundgut, Goldhaber, Reiss, and many collaborators is mentioned. This research provides observations from type Ia supernovae that support the idea of cosmological time dilation. Full references for this research is below.

"All of these tests show that Γ=(1+ζ) time dilation is preferred over models that predict no time dilation." (ref 3, page 103)

I rest my case.

I don't claim to be a great comedian or a great scientist... but I try to keep my jokes scientifically sound. Or ironic :}

 

1. NPR Talk of the Nation, Science Friday April 3, 2009

http://www.npr.org/templates/transcript/transcript.php?storyId=102715275

 

2. "Fundamental Aspects of the Expansion of the Universe and Cosmic Horizons"

Tamara M. Davis, Ph.D. Thesis for The University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia

http://www.dark-cosmology.dk/~tamarad/papers/thesis_complete.pdf

 

3. "Expanding Confusion: Common Misconceptions of Cosmological Horizons and the Superluminal Expansion of the Universe"

Tamara M. Davis and Charles H. Lineweaver at the University of New South Wales in Sydney Australia

in Publications of the Astronomical Society of Australia, 2004, 21, pages 97-109

http://www.mso.anu.edu.au/~charley/papers/DavisLineweaver04.pdf

 

4. "Observation of Cosmological Time Dilation Using Type 1a Supernovae as Clocks"

http://arxiv.org/PS_cache/astro-ph/pdf/9602/9602124v1.pdf

Goldhaber, Gerson et al. 1996

 

5. "Timescale Stretch Paramterization of Type Ia Supernova B-Band Light Curves"

http://arxiv.org/PS_cache/astro-ph/pdf/0104/0104382v1.pdf

Goldhaber, Gerson, et al. 2001

 

6. "Time Dilation in the Light Curve of the Distant Type Ia Supernova SN 1995K"

http://iopscience.iop.org/1538-4357/466/1/L21/pdf/1538-4357_466_1_L21.pdf

Leibundgut, Bruno et al.

 

7. "Time Dilation from Spectral Feature Age Measurements of Type Ia Supernovae"

http://arxiv.org/abs/astro-ph/9707260

http://articles.adsabs.harvard.edu/full/1997AJ....114..722R

Riess, Adam et al.

 

8. "Observational Evidence from Supernovae for an Accelerating Universe and a Cosmological Constant

www.stsci.edu/~ariess/documents/1998.pdf

Riess, Adam et al.

22nd July 2011

1:17am: Former NFL Athletes Sue NFL, Riddell over Concussions
The story of 75 former NFL players bringing suit against the NFL is all over the web today.

"Concussion Treatment Cited in Suit Against N.F.L."
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/21/sports/football/retired-players-sue-nfl-over-treatment-of-concussions.html

We live in days of anger and rapid judgment.  Public sentiment is largely negative, sometimes scathing, against the 75 former football players bringing suit against the NFL and Riddell for failure to inform and protect regarding concussions.  A sample of comments and responses from around the web illustrates the strong the draw to criticize and complain, rather than investigate and understand. 

***
NFL players are suing the NFL for failure to inform and protect their players...WHAT?!?!?!?!?!?! that's why there are trainers and medical personnel on the field ...
***
Tennis elbow, anyone? Don't participate in sports when it is so dangerous.
***
Typical class action money grab.
***
Typical unquenchable greed for the buck, cloaked in fake victimhood, so common today. Frankly, they're saying they have no personal responsibility for their own welfare. Hope the court tosses this since it's the end of the line for the gravy train.
***
So your gonna tell me these 75 former players are suing because they weren't told how dangerous it is to beat the tar outta one another?
Thank God for football because these 75 players are too stupid to have done anything else.
***
What's next hockey player suing for losing a tooth?
***
how stupid do you have to be to not know concussions are bad for you? you signed up to play, nobody forced these old timers to play football. you're stupid and poor because of the decisions you made, get over it. judge judy aint helping ya.
***
lol really the players dont know how to research for themselves they need to be told that concussions are bad wow what idiots anybody with half a brain could tell you without research that concussions are bad.
***
Nothin but a bunch of scumbag lets get everything we can from our old boss's so we can act like it really hurt us back then.....WHY.....DID.....YOU.....PLAYERS.....NOT.....SAY......SOMETHING......BEFORE ???????????????
***
work 5 or ten years part-time and want taken care of the rest of their lives.......... typical union worker.....
***
Lets see if I got this straight: College graduates didn't understand that if someone banged you on the head for 3 to 10 years you might get not only a headache but also a concussion, hmmmmmmm I think our schools are failing us a bit, don't you think! What more can you say about left wing colleges and left wing professors. Universities of DUH's !!
***


This is not about the marquee name, first round pick, million dollar superstar.
I think there are plenty of folks including owners and coaches who all along have done what they can to protect these guys.  And I think these athletes feel secure if they make the decision to exit a game with an injury.

But what about the guys on at the bottom of the roster - competing fiercely not just to win games but to keep their place on the team - to keep a job instead of lining up against 10 other men vying for the same security guard job?  These are the men that I am concerned about - far more likely in my mind to rely on the assessment of the coach or trainer instead of their own instinct or pain level. 

What were the medical experts nearest the NFL saying?  If you haven't looked into the story - past the headlines and a few biting comments here and there - you are probably not aware that the suit is partly about the role that NFL medical experts played.  Here's an excerpt of what was being promoted as recently as 2006.


http://www.medscape.com/vi​ewarticle/553967_3 (requires Webmd free account registry)
"Concussion in professional football: summary of the research conducted by the National Football League's Committee on Mild Traumatic Brain Injury"
Elliot J. Pellman, MD; David C. Viano, Dr. Med., PhD
Neurosurg Focus
2006

***
In the NFL, 56.5% of players with concussions returned to play on the day of the injury and 97.1% returned to play by Day 9 after the injury. Only 2.9% of the players missed more than 9 days before returning to play. This indicates that most mild TBIs sustained in the NFL are self-limiting and that players recover fully and spontaneously in a short time. Be cause a significant percentage of players returned to play in the same game and the overwhelming majority of players with concussions were kept out of football-related activities for less than 1 week, it can be concluded that mild TBIs in professional football are not serious injuries.
***

OK... 56.5% of players with concussions returned to play on the same day. Since so many returned to play in the same game... mild TBIs in professional football are not serious injuries! So much for the sentiment "at the college/NFL level when you are hurt, you are hurt, there is no shame in coming off the field". There probably was shame in coming off the field for an injury that was "not serious" ... especially if you were last man on the totem pole.

This study brought to you by the NFL... who will NOT be paying for healthcare of former players once they are done getting concussions for the NFL.  Unless this court action brings about a change.

21st July 2011

12:25am: Axioms, First Principles and Faith; Math, Science, and Religion
Mathematics was one of my first loves, one of the first things that I felt I actually did well. Mathematics can describe the world as accurately as an artistic photograph or a realist artist, or as abstractly as an impressionist. There is a sublime beauty in sound mathematics - whether that mathematics is certain geometry, or the uncertain world of complex system analysis.

After developing a passion for mathematics, I also became an enthusiast of science. I was especially drawn to particle physics. Murray Gell-Mann was an early hero of mine. He is one of the pillars of modern subatomic particle models. Read up on quarks and you'll not be able to escape his name. For something so elusive, fundamental, and diminishingly small to be described in terms of colors and flavors - wonderful! And those oddball leptons!

Mathematical models progress from a set of axioms, which may be only a single axiom depending on the model type. These statements are necessary to continue building the model, and cannot be proved from within the model. For those studying and using a given mathematical model, the axiom is not subject to requests for proof. (Although it may be subject to requests for proof from other math disciplines in their models)

Scientific models progress from first principles - again it may be possible to build a scientific model from a single first principle. In describing reality, a scientific model can be only as sound as its first principle(s).  At the same time, attempts to portray science as without any need for assumption or faith are misguided in that they neglect the role of first principle components in defining the context of the observation and the context of the prediction or explanation that will be sought.  (My definition of science is the use of observation to explain or predict outcomes in a manner which can be validated when the subject and timeframes are accessible.)

Religious and spiritual belief systems are also built on a foundation.  Is it valid for mathematics and science to make use of axioms and first principles, and yet somehow unreasonable for religious thought and belief to also make use of a similar type of foundation?  I believe it is only appropriate that religious thought proceed in a similar manner.  Sometimes "dogma" is considered to be this foundation for religious thought and belief systems. I think that, however, dogma sometimes includes items beyond an axiom or first principle - it might contain items that are meant to separate "true practitioners" from other adherents in the eyes of some. That's too bad. For my own faith, I prefer for the foundation to clearly belong to the a family that can be describe as axioms or first principles. I believe that the statements of John 1:1-2 fall into this category of axioms or first principles for Christians.

John 1:1-2 NKJV
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God.

20th July 2011

11:47pm: Servants of God, Students of Science
Because today is the 189th birthday of Gregor Mendel - so told me Google :)  - I wanted to call out at least a short list of additional men who were keen in their scientific observations of the world(s) around us, while still holding to a belief in truth that was beyond nature, beyond the bounds that are considered to govern the normal behavior of our universe.  While there are many giants in scientific thought whose religious beliefs are matters of controversy, the following scientists have a faith in God that is a matter of record.  For some of these men this is because they held an official position within a Christian church or religious order.  For others in this list, it is because we have their writings, espousing and defending their faith.  Each of these men also had a foundational role in the area of science I note below.

Nicolaus Copernicus - Astronomy
Marin Mersenne - Acoustics
Blaise Pascal - Calculating Machines
Robert Boyle - Chemistry
Michael Faraday - Electromagnetism
Gregor Mendel - Genetics
Georges Lemaître - Cosmology
Basile Luyet - Cryobiology

Basile Luyet was a longtime resident of Madison, Wisconsin.  The following passage from an article composed near the time of his death (http://www.planetesacha.com/Cryobiology.html) may capture a position held by others in the list above, as well as other men and women whose lives are filled with both the Word of God and books of science.

'Born in Savièse (Valais), Switerzland, in 1897, Basile Luyet entered the congregation of the Missionaries of St. Francis de Sales. His interest in science dated back to his school days and his entrance into religious life was made only after he ascertained that he would be able to continue his study of science.
"I wouldn’t enter if they had said no,” he adds, explaining that St. Francis’ statement "science is the eighth sacrament of the priest" was his guiding force. He felt strongly that he must learn as much as he could for true knowledge was most desirable in the Church, "knowledge that’s established with a certainty."'
10:18pm: Reflecting on PATCO 1981 strike, Part II - Public Safety Implications
We've been hearing about air traffic controllers and safety lately, after some high profile events where controllers were asleep or otherwise inaccessible.

There has been a little discussion about the reasonableness of their schedule and whether changes should be made.  But the tenor of much of the discussion directs responsibility largely to the controller(s) and away from the scheduling and management of this vital service.  Consider these NTSB reports, all the way back to a few months after the strike... and decide if the FAA did or did not need some additional motivation to address issues which compromised public safety...

December 8, 1981 National Transportation Safety Board
"Special Investigation Report - Air Traffic Controller System"
http://libraryonline.erau.edu/online-full-text/ntsb/special-investigation-reports/SIR81-07.pdf

May 12, 1983 National Transportation Safety Board
"Special Investigation Report - Followup Study of the United States Air Traffic Controller System"
http://libraryonline.erau.edu/online-full-text/ntsb/special-investigation-reports/SIR83-01.pdf

January 23, 1996 National Transportation Safety Board
"Special Investigation Report Air Traffic Control Equipment Outages"
http://libraryonline.erau.edu/online-full-text/ntsb/special-investigation-reports/SIR96-01.pdf

April 10, 2007 National Transportation Safety Board
"Safety Recommendation"
http://www3.ntsb.gov/recs/letters/2007/A07_30_32.pdf
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