Washburn's World

My take on the world. My wife often refers to this as the WWW (Weird World of Washburn)

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Location: Germantown, Wisconsin, United States

I am a simple country boy transplanted from the Piehl Township in northern Wisconsin to the Milwaukee metropolitan area who came down "sout" in 1980 for college and have stayed in the area since.
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Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Welcome to Gulag Wisconsin

Oh, BOO HOO to Federales and retired police officers required to live like the serfs; i.e. without concealed firearms.

I love the reference by Peg "The Keg": [The federal] pre-emption of state and local concealed carry prohibitions is self-executing. Maybe if we put a copy of the Constitution at the bottom of the wine glass she might get around to reading it; especially that pesky 10th amendment part.

In a federated, constitutional republic, national laws could not preempt state and local laws. If such usurpation in federated Republic were tried the States would secede and/or the citizens would shoot the Nationalists encroaching on the self determination of the state. But that matter was settled in 1865, when citizens last tried to resist "with manly firmness [Nationalist] invasions on the rights of the people."

Now don't get me wrong, I believe 941.23 to be a violation of the Wisconsin State constitution. But, in 2001 the ladies on the supreme court, such a Justice Crooks, ruled in State v. Cole that you have to whine about your constitutional rights quickly or they are lost forever and lost to everyone. I think the law should have been declared void. Wisconsin then would adopt the <sarcasm>blood-soaked</sarcasm> concealed carry system which is in Vermont.

That said allowing jack-boots from the US Marshals, DEA, ATF, IRS, BLM, the rest of the alphabet soup and some retired municipal police officers an exemption from oppressive laws is worse. Perhaps living like the serfs in the state might soften their hearts toward freedom. One might even hope the flame of liberty might begin to burn in their bosoms as the indignities of serfdom wear on them.

In the mean time welcome to serfdom and I will enjoy a bit of guilty hohn.

As I have said before, I look forward to living in a free society sometime before my death. But, I will settle for the poor shadow; a constitutional republic where a written constitution "[delegates powers] ... to the .. Government [which] are few and defined [and where] those which are to remain in the [individual] are numerous and indefinite".

Clearly, James Madison underestimated the alleged dangers cited by the opponents of this country's second, current constitution.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Sewer Woes for Milwaukee are A-Coming

This does not bode well for the MMSD. of the 850 million gallons MMSD is responsible for 100 to 120 million. MMSD is responsible for 1/8 of the "troublesome" dumping mentioned in the article. And notice the solution is the same one proposed in the 1930's after the reign fo the "Sewer" Socialists; Separate the sanitary sewers from the storm drainage sewers.

When I ran for Germantown Village Trustee in 2000. My main plank was to get out of MMSD as fast as possible. Because it was only a mater of time before the EPA or another state sued MMSD over its pollution of Lake Michigan. Once the suit happens, you can bet every municipality in MMSD not just the offenders, Milwaukee and Shorewood, will be paying off the judgement and paying the $3 billion estimated to separate the Milwuakee and Shorewood sewer systems.

I may have to consider moving to a non-MMSD comunity.

Milwaukee, too Stupid to Run an Election

Well, on Wisconsin Public Radio this morning on the Joy Cardin show Mordecai Lee stated that Milwaukee City residents are too stupid to run clean election.

This was Wednesday, May 18, 2005 at approximately 7:40 am.

I will post the audio when it is available tomorrow. The audio is here at 23 minutes.

Requires RealPlayer.

Don't you just love the sound of bigots in the morning.

Thursday, May 12, 2005

First warrants issued

The first arrest warrants for vote fraud related to the November 2, 2004 election have been issued. No charges filed yet.

Well, we finally know what the fraud threshold for Milwaukee District Attorney, "Let 'em Go Mike" McCann. Self-confessed vote fraud is prosecutable in Milwaukee County.

I doubt the election fraudster from 2001, Jessy Tolkan, will be confessing anytime soon on her November 2004 work.

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Marquette Nickname

My only coment on the Marquette University nickname is:

Go, Gold!

This is a monetary policy not an athletic cheer.

Competing Task Forces

I have this question:

Will the charter of the Milwaukee City Election Commission Task Force change from unrestricted access to legal access in light of the preliminary report from the joint MPD/FBI elections fraud task force?

What every clerk needs to know?

This would be an interesting conferenece to attend today.

I found it advertised on the Wisconsin State Elections Board web-site with the link entitled: "What every clerk needs to know." I would love to hear the talk of Milwaukee City elections at that meeting.

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

It sucks to be correct

The initial Journal Sentinel article on the task force findings was published today.

Although I have not fisked the preliminary report, what I have found is damining enough.

I find it hard to believe that a ward that had 150 more ballots go into the voting machine than voters given ballots is not a violation of state election law. If nothing else it is election fraud by willful neglect as defined by 12.13(2)(a). I want those poll inspectors prosecuted because the penalty of conviction is being prohibited for being an election official for 5 years, under 12.60(3). At least then the those (hopefully, merely incompetent) poll workers would not corrupt future elections.

Also how is not completing 7.51 paperwork or reconciling numbers accidental? Because if creating these bad records is intententional, that is election fraud under 12.13(2)(b)(4)

Unfortunately, thanks to "Let 'em go" Mike McCann, Milwaukee County is a prosecution-free zone for voting fraud.

The Milwaukee DA does not have the records

It is official. I spoke to James Martin, the records officer for the Milwaukee County DA. I had some nuanced questions on whether the custody referred to in his letter was physical or legal custody. Those have been answered.

The Milwaukee county DA's office does not have any form of custody of ANY records or materials from the Milwaukee City Elections Commission from the November 2, 2004 general election. This blanket statement includes both originals and copies of said materials.

So where are the election records the Milwaukee City Elections Commission is statutorily required to keep in their office? Have the records actually been taken anywhere?

The guidelines published by the Wisconsin Department of Justice categorized the records I am seeking as "must keep" records because of WI statute 7.24.

I am now pursuing these records (inspectors' reports and etc.) with a follow-up OR request for the correspondences between the City Election Commission and any law enforcement or prosecutorial agency.

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Clarification on the False Balance Test

I have been called to task as to why I think the balance test cited by the Milwaukee City Election Commission is bogus.

The opinions, Linzmeyer v. Forcey and Newspapers, Inc. v Breier, are the only court opinions requiring a balance test between investigational integrity and public disclosure of material from that investigation. Criminal investigations are in the public interest. As is not interfering with criminal investigations.

Both opinions create a 2 part test. The first part is the question: "Is this a record as defined by statute 19.35?"

Yes, I am requesting records. Moreover they are records the creation of which is required by statute 7.51(4). The records sought by Owen of Boots and Sabers are required to be created under 6.29(2)(a)).

The second half of the test is in 3 parts. The answers to the 3 parts for my open record request are.
1.NoIs the record a police report or investigational work product?
2.YesIs the record part of an ongoing investigation?
The record is part on an ivestigation.
If not, could the record be used as part of disiplinary action or other legal sanction?

Since, the records I want are not investigational work product there is no specific interest for the Election Commssion to balance as a police department, district attorney or federal prosecutor would need to balance.

The duty of the Election Commission then is to balance the general, public interest that criminal investigations not be compromised. This vague, unspecific interest is not connected to the specific records requested. The Milwaukee City Election Commssion should read the the DOJ document on handling open records requests. The records I want are records in the class of absolute right to access. The creation of the records is mandated by state statute. The keeping of the records is mandated by state law. These "must keep" provision are to the detail that a whole chapter,7.23, is required to define the "must keep" rules. See the case, State ex rel. Journal Co. v. County Court cited in the DOJ document on "Must Keep" documents. Hiding them with other officials does not work and the court ruled against the "I don't have them" defence.

The balance test may be moot because of the statutory nature of the records sought. But if not, the concern by the investigated to an on-going investigation needs to specific. How does disclosure of these, specific records pose a risk to which investigation? A copy of the letter from the DA or the Federal prosecutor would suffice to make this connection between the records requested and the investigation. At present the connection between disclosure of these records and the risk to the investigation is unsubstantiatied.

Which is why I have initiated an open records request for any such letter(s) to the Milwaukee Election Commission from the either the DA or the federal prosecutor.

Sunday, May 01, 2005

Records are not at the Election Commission

I recieved a letter from the Milwaukee City Election Commission informing me that my open records request will not be fulfilled for either of 2 reasons. The first reason is it is the opinion of the Election Commission that releasing public records which may be referenced during a criminal investigation may compromise that investigation. The risk of such compromise outweighs the public's right to know. I can now begin my appeals process if I wish.

The second reason is that the City Elections Commission is no longer in posession of the records. I found this out when I spoke to Melanie Swank on April 13, 2004. She stated the records had been siezed from the City Election commission about 2 weeks prior. Still, it took 4 more weeks after the siezure for the letter of denial to appear in my mail box.

Swank was unsure if the possession of records was transfered to the Milwaukee County DA, the federal prosecutor or was jointly held by both offices. In order to find out, on April 18, 2005, I sent an open records request to the Milwaukee county DA for 32 pieces of paper (4 7.51 related canvass records for 8 wards). I have now ruled out Milwauke DA possession. James Martin called me to inform me that my request was still pending, but that he (the records officer) needed permission to release copies of the records. If the DA's office had sole possession, the answer would have been yes or no, but the request would be aswered. Seeking permission eliminates this possibility. There records are in the sole custody of the federal prosecutor or in joint custody between the DA and the federal prosecutor.

I discuss why this a good thing out on the Boots and Sabers thread on this topic.

My first point is that this balancing test is a crock of sh*t. If the risk to the investigation were so great, the records officer of the Milwaukee District Attorney's office would have dismissed my April 18, 2005 request out of hand. Jame Martin would not have contacted me twice since then to inform me the request still being processed and to assure me the request was not being ignored. I would think the District Attorneys office doing the investigation would be the one required to balance the risk to an on-going investigation. It is not the duty of the agency being investigated to balance any risk to that investigation. The investigated will always tend away from embarassing disclosure. That is why 19.31 was enacted; to force disclosure when a public official or agency would rather not disclose. This fig leaf needs to be chanllenged so it cannot be used in the future.

The second point is that the records the feds siezed were not only the City's records. The Milwaukee City Election Commission was supposed to turn over to the County Elections Commission one of the poll lists, one of the inspector's report and one of the the machine tape reports for each of the 314 wards. This was not done. This violation of the canvassing statutes was discovered by accident during the March 23, 2005 session of the Senate Special Committe on Election Law Review. Listen beginning at 1 hour and 20 minutes (1:20) into the afternoon session of March 23, 2005. It was discovered Milwaukee City had physical custody of Milwuakee County's set of election records at the time the federal/state investigation began in mid-January (2.5 months late). Between the start of the investigation until March 23, 2005, Janice Dunn of the Milwaukee county election commsision stated she stopped asking for her (the county's) set of records (4.5 months late). Kevin Kennedy points out that this is why there are 2 sets of records made, so the counties can get their set by 2:00 pm the next day (November 3, 2004). Janice Dunn failed to ask for the county's set of records betwenn March 23, 2005 and the siezure of the county's records from the Milwaukee City Elections Commission on or about April 1, 2005 (5 months late).

All the things I want to look at should also be available at the county election office. Because of the election law violations under 7.60 committed by the Milwaukee County Election Commssion, I cannot get access to the set of records created on election night which were intended for the county. I wonder now if 2 sets were even made of anything other than the poll lists.