Many consider this to be his best ever speech - September 19, 2017 Watch the Speech Here
By Ola Lisowski, MacIver Institute, September 11, 2017
As children all across Wisconsin head back to school, it is time for the MacIver Institute's annual examination of our educational system. To make sure we're all set for the semester, let's take a look at what's going on with our students.
First, we'll touch on recent developments at the State Capitol, followed by a rundown of how our kids are doing on a slew of exams and other metrics. We'll also examine different indicators of a healthy educational ecosystem - such as the state of school choice and how the state is addressing failing schools - before wrapping up. Let's start off with an update on the 2017-19 Wisconsin State Budget.
A Busy Budget Summer
To understand the context of Wisconsin's state of education, we have to start with the 2017-19 biennial budget. We've been covering those issues from the fourth floor of the Capitol all summer long.
The state's Joint Committee on Finance (JFC) agreed to a budget plan for K-12 schools that sends $693.3 million more to the Department of Public Instruction (DPI) over current funding levels. JFC's plan sends $8.9 million less than Gov. Scott Walker proposed in February, but the increase is still considerable.
Included in the budget: more funding for schools across the board in the form of per pupil categorical aid payments, more flexibility to raise property taxes for low-revenue school districts, and more access to choice and charter schools statewide. Changes to the Special Needs Scholarship Program will allow approximately 250 more students to participate, effectively doubling the program.
After three years of changing students' standardized tests three different times, Wisconsin is stuck with the Forward Exam. That's a clear win for students and the rest of the public, as we'll soon have another yardstick to compare student growth year over year. READ the REST
by DYLAN GWINN Breitbart News 8 Sep 2017
The NFL opened its 2017 season Thursday night, in much the same way that it played out the 2016 season. The game featured the team that won the final game of the year last season, the game was high-scoring with plenty of offense, the game featured an anthem protest, and the league’s ratings went down.
The game between the Chiefs and the Patriots drew a 14.6 overnight rating on NBC. That rating is down nearly two full points from last year’s 16.5 number for the Panthers-Broncos opener, and more than three points down from the Steelers-Patriots opener in 2015.
Why, the steep decline?
While the ratings have clearly trended down for a number of seasons, last night’s game did feature an anthem protest from Chiefs cornerback Marcus Peters, and it’s entirely likely that many tuned-out after seeing that:
Marcus Peters sits on trainer's bench during national anthem
The sports media would gladly point the finger at politics, as the cause of the ratings drop. Though, no debate, or matter of pressing national importance was being discussed in politics on Thursday night. Some have opined that coverage of Hurricane Irma, might be the culprit. Though, it rings hollow that coverage of the storm would cause a 12% decline in ratings from last year.
Instead, it’s more likely that NFL fans are following through on their warnings of last year. Specifically, the warning where 44% of fans said they would stop watching the NFL if the anthem protests continued. That poll, backed-up by the J.D. Power survey which showed that most fans cited the anthem protests as the main reason for why they stopped watching the league, might have a lot more to do with the ratings drop than Irma. Breitbart HERE
by Chuck Ross, The Daily Caller, Aug. 31, 2017
As FBI director last year, James Comey began writing drafts of a statement exonerating Hillary Clinton, even before all witnesses in the investigation — including Clinton herself — had been interviewed.
The Senate Judiciary Committee obtained the Comey memos as part of its investigation into his firing by President Trump, which occurred on May 9.
The revelation that Comey had begun drafting memos of his exoneration statement comes from transcripts of interviews given last fall by two FBI officials. James Rybicki, Comey’s chief of staff, and Trisha Anderson, the principal deputy general counsel of national security and cyberlaw at the FBI, gave the interviews as part of an investigation conducted by the Office of Special Counsel into the FBI’s handling of the Clinton email investigation.
In a July 5, 2016, press conference, Comey said that he would not be recommending charges against Clinton for mishandling classified information despite her use of a private email server as secretary of state. While the transcripts of those interviews are heavily redacted, they indicate that Comey started working on an announcement clearing Clinton in April or May of last year, before the FBI interviewed 17 witnesses in the case, including Clinton and some of her top aides.
Clinton was interviewed for several hours on July 2, just three days before Comey’s announcement.
by Mark Bauerlein, August 27, 2017 The American Spectator
Actually, the aggression is always first and last, and there’s never anything passive about it.
Last month in the New Republic, a headline read, “Trump Wants a Culture War. Are Democrats Ready to Fight Back?” Social and religious conservatives over 50 had to smile. The story followed a pattern that began in the 1970s, when the Moral Majority, Bill Bennett, and Allan Bloom… were said to be fomenting cultural strife.
The pattern goes like this. A conservative politician or figurehead rises up to speak for family values, God and country, or Western civilization, as President Trump did in Poland last month. Liberal commentators respond by chiding them for their aggression. In their eyes, the Culture War always seems to be started by the Right. When Politico recalled Pat Buchanan’s famous speech at the 1992 Republican Convention, the essay began, “On Aug. 17, 1992, Pat Buchanan and the Republican Part declared a ‘culture war… for the soul of America.” It’s as if Gloria Steinem, Jesse Jackson (“Hey, hey, ho, ho, Western Civ has got to go”), Queer Theorists in the academy, and films such as Footloose, which cast conservative ministers as crazed moralists, hadn’t been waging culture war themselves.
Sometimes the one-sidedness is subtler. A 2012 CNN story described a revived culture war in America inspired by President Obama’s insistence that Catholic organizations provide contraception in employee health plans. This mandate was a shock to religious organizations, including the ones that supported his candidacy. But CNN presented Obama’s actions as simply a policy decision. The Right, on the other hand, went into full-on battle mode, reacting with “an angry, vengeful spirit” that was “channeled by candidate Rick Santorum” (referred to as “Saint Santorum” in the next paragraph).
President Trump is doing the same thing now, according to liberal journalists, when he bans transgender individuals in the military and appoints Kansas governor Sam Brownback as ambassador for international religious freedom. Somehow, President Obama’s order to admit trans- individuals into the army didn’t count as contentious, only President Trump’s suspension of it. READ it HERE
For Immediate Release:
August 25, 2017
Republican Party of Dane County
info@DaneGOP.org / 608-709-0478
This past week, Mayor Paul Soglin (D - Madison, WI) decided to take down monuments of the Confederacy at a local cemetery. Nowhere in his public statement is there a reference to the Democratic party.
Soglin writes: “We will honor our history. We will respect the dead. We make sure that our legacy is to tell the truth and to remove evidence of racist historical revisionism. We will use the story of these monuments to tell the truth about a century of Jim Crow, economic oppression and those like the United Daughters of the Confederacy and the Ku Klux Klan who spread their lies far beyond the boundaries of the rebellious states.”Read more
President Donald Trump Addresses Nation on U.S. Policy in Afghanistan shares vision for a stronger, united nation, bound together by patriotism
Speech begins at 22 minutes. Scroll over.
Trump Tower lobby, Aug. 15, 2017
Watch it Here Discussion of Charlottesville riot starts well into the press conference -- after 15 minutes, scroll over.
President Donald Trump Cuts Planned Parenthood-Run Sex-Ed Programs, May Prepare for Abstinence Funding
by Micaiah Bilger Life Site News Aug 11, 2017
President Donald Trump recently cut funding to a questionable teen pregnancy prevention program that has given millions of dollars to the abortion business Planned Parenthood.
The Hill reports pro-abortion President Barack Obama created the Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program in 2010 to teach vulnerable populations of students about preventing pregnancy.
Participants in the program recently learned that their grant funding will end next year, two years sooner than expected, according to the report. Trump’s administration notified the 81 grant recipients that funding for the program is being cut by about $200 million and their grants will end on June 30, 2018, the report states.
Among the groups receiving grants to teach sex education are several Planned Parenthood affiliates.
The program administrators awarded an annual $1 million grant to Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest and Hawaiian Islands to target rural teens. The abortion group said it uses the funds to “reduce teen pregnancy rates, increase use of contraceptives and delay initiation of sexual activity among ninth- to 12th-grade youth in rural Washington, Idaho, Oregon, Utah and Hawaii.”
Planned Parenthood of Greater Washington and North Idaho, as well as Planned Parenthood of the Heartland also received grants of nearly $1 million each annually to promote their sex agenda to teens.
Health and Human Services Department spokesman Mark Vafiades told the New York Times that there is very little evidence that the Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program is working.
Vafiades said the evidence of a positive impact is “very weak,” and the Trump administration wants to support a program that “provides youth with the information and skills they need to avoid the many risks associated with teen sex.”
Democrats and abortion activists are upset by the cuts, and are sending letters to HHS Secretary Tom Price in protest. Many speculate that the cuts could mean Trump’s administration will support abstinence-based programs instead.
Here’s more from The Hill:
Valerie Huber, a prominent national abstinence education advocate, was recently named chief of staff to the assistant secretary for health, which oversees the office that manages the Teen Pregnancy Prevention program.
It’s not clear how much of a role Huber played in the decision to cut funding. But she has questioned its effectiveness in the past.
“The healthiest message for youth is one that gives youth the skills and information to avoid the risks of teen sex, not merely reduce them,” Huber wrote in an op-ed for The Hill.
“Policymakers finally have an opportunity to give American youth the reinforcement they need to continue to make healthy choices — and to normalize sexual delay for all teens and especially for those teens who currently feel pressured to have sex by social media, their favorite music — or their sex education classes.”
Many parents and communities become very upset when they learn Planned Parenthood teaches their teenagers about sex in public school. A Michigan school district recently rejected a Planned Parenthood sex education program after witnessing a strong public outcry against it.
by Alex Pfeiffer, The Daily Caller Aug 12, 2017
President Donald Trump will start the beginning steps Monday of a long awaited crackdown on Chinese intellectual property practices, administration officials told reporters Saturday.
The president will issue an executive memorandum that will ask U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer to examine whether an investigation under section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974 should be opened.
An official continued on to say that there is more than $600 billion of intellectual property theft against U.S. companies with China responsible for a huge portion of that.
The purpose of this memorandum is to ensure American companies and workers are not subject to harmful policies by China in relation to intellectual property and to ensure that America continues to maintain its leadership in technology, an official stated. An investigation by Lighthizer could possibly lead to tariffs against China and action through the World Trade Organization.
The concerns about China’s practices include policies that encourage businesses to share or turn over their technology to joint venture partners, and China’s use of state funds to promote its own intellectual property.
The announcement will come amid rising tensions between the U.S. and North Korea. President Trump has previously chastised China for not doing enough about the hermit nation, however, an administration official said the move Monday is unrelated to North Korea.
“Trade is trade, national security is national security,” the official stated. READ more HERE