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Practically Speaking

Kyle and her husband moved to Brookfield in 1986. She became active in local politics and started blogging in 2004. Her focus is primarily on local issues but often includes state and national topics, too. Kyle looks at things from the taxpayers' perspective in a creative, yet down to earth way, addressing them from a practical point of view.

Wisconsin Senate mining bill took wrong turn, now better

Environment, Economy, Legislation, WISCONSIN

Wisconsin's Assembly passed AB 426, a Iron Mining Bill, in January. It essentially was designed to speed up the expensive, long drawn out 3-year DNR approval process to a 360 day maximum permit deadline.

Wisconsin's Senate came up with their version earlier this week, however, theirs was far worse than the long, drawn out process we presently have. Among other bad stipulations, it added a new $2 per ton tax on top of the present 15% of net proceeds tax. Since the mine would produce from 8 to 16 million tons a year, that new stipulation would cost the mining company from $16 - $32 million dollars of additional expense. So that Senate version of the the good Assembly Bill 426 would be far worse than the unfavorable process we currently have in Wisconsin.

Thankfully, many Wisconsinites contacted their State Senators, urging them to support mining in Wisconsin and not vote for this terrible Senate version, with its unfriendly business taxes and regulations. So many people called and emailed that Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald disbanded the Senate mining committee, scrapped the Senate version, and sent the clean, better AB 426 Assembly version to the Joint Finance Committee, which will send it directly to the Senate floor.

So people, you made the difference. We are still not out of the woods though because the Assembly version can still be amended in the Senate. They can still add on the poison-pill provisions, but at least this way, those promoting those bad ideas will be known and each Senator will have to take a stand if they are for or against mining jobs in Wisconsin.

Just how unfavorable is Wisconsin for mining companies to do business here? Here is a little test:

What do Zimbabwe, The Congo (DRC), India, Bolivia, Honduras and Wisconsin have in common? They rank among the top 10 bottom scorers of 79 locations throughout the world--Antarctica excepted--friendly to the mining industry.

The Fraser Institute surveyed the opinions of mining executives, exploration managers and mining consultants from around the world and found Wisconsin scored the worst in Environmental Regulations and 2nd worst, only to Hugo Chavez' Venezuela, for "Uncertainty concerning the administration, interpretation, and enforcement of existing regulations". (Click link and scroll down to look at graphs)

How did this happen to Wisconsin? We're the Badger State. Badgers because they dig and burrow!

Wisconsin, with our flag depicting a miner standing to the right of the shield and sailor to the left, state products representing the state's major industries adorning the shield and badger on top: "In four sections surrounding the shield are representations of the states main industries: Agriculture, mining, manufacturing and navigation. The cornucopia and pile of lead represent farm products and minerals. (My emphasis)

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Happy Earth Day - Go Diesel!

Going Green, Environment, Energy, Special events, Transportation

Today is Earth Day. It is also Vladimir Lenin's birthday.

What would be my perfect gift for Earth Day? To learn that Wisconsin's Assembly and Senate failed in passing Gov. Doyle's Global Warming Bill! It looks like I just may get my wish, but it isn't over until the fat lady sings, as they say.

Many of the measures environmentalists push to save the earth are in fact harmful. Ethanol and CFLs come to mind. Hybrid cars have a huge carbon footprint, if you factor in the manufacturing and battery disposal.

So here is my Earth Day tip: Go diesel for your car. Seriously. I am not being flip. Clean diesel is not only is very clean but it will save you money if you drive a lot.

We took the plunge last fall and purchased a VW Jetta SportWagen TDI (diesel) car. It is so clean, it qualified for an Advanced lean burn technology vehicle credit, the same type of tax credit that hybrids did. Unlike a hybrid, diesels last a l-o-n-g time. They like to be driven.

Did we purchase the car just to get the credit? Of course not. It was a nice bonus though. We bought the car because we like road trips and my former PT Cruiser got an abysmal 21mpg if going downhill, with a tail wind, on the highway. (It's about 18mpg at home.)

The Jetta was touted at 42mpg Hwy, 30 city. (Some drivers report 55-60mpg hwy.) Mine isn't broken in yet, but since the weather warmed up, I have been getting 38-40 at home and 45.6mpg out to say, Thiensville (some freeway, some streets).

Is it smelly? Noisy? No. I don't think you would even know it was diesel until you stepped on the accelerator. (They really go!)

Europeans have been driving diesel for a long time. Their fuel costs are so much higher than ours that they must get the best bang for their buck. Maybe now that Volkswagen is building a plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee, they will have more of a presence here in the states. Maybe diesel will catch on here too.

Don't expect to do any great negotiating on price though. These cars fly off the showroom floor. We spotted one being unloaded at Concours Motors in Glendale, but it was sold out from under us. In some areas of the country, there is a $3,000 add to the sticker price.

So you see, by choosing clean diesel, I am greener than some of you think. My idea of green though is saving money! ;-)
 

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Strange Political Bedfellows: Glad Doyle's veto held

Environment, Legislation, WISCONSIN

It is often said that politics makes strange bedfellows. Or as I often say, if you wait long enough, you will eventually find an issue you agree on, even with someone at the other end of the political spectrum.

Well yesterday, Governor Doyle and I had our first common ground victory when his veto on the bill to take the right to appoint the Secretary of the DNR from the Governor held, with a 58-38 vote. (They needed 64 yes votes to override; the 38 no votes came from Rep. 34, Dems 3, Ind. 1)

That seems a bit strange, that Gov. Doyle and I would want the same thing, doesn't it? Well, this is even stranger. About 3/4 of the Assembly Republicans voted against the veto override.

Here are some reasons why: (my emphasis)

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This is scary: Obama discussing launch to "chill runaway global warming"

Environment, Going Green, President Obama, WARNING, Weather

Hey, what happened to Climate Change? Guess that crisis didn't fit as nicely into the idea of blocking sunlight?  Notice they are again referring to it as Global Warming instead of Climate Change? Odd, since we are in a period of Global Cooling.

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"Earth Hour" Saturday night? What can I turn on?

Energy, Environment, Going Green, Special events, Weather, World News

Have you heard about this idea? Earth Hour - Give our planet a break. It is Saturday, March 28th from 8:30pm - 9:30pm. Everyone on the planet is supposed to turn out their lights for one hour, to relieve our planet of the burden of Global Warming! (By the way, Planet Earth is not a living being, nor is it our "Mother.")

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Plastic bags: Going green or going for the green?

Environment, Follow the money, Going Green

Menards bag sale

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Drill Here, Drill Now, but not for long

Energy, Environment, President Obama

 

Yes. he can, and I would like to too

Energy, Environment, President Obama, TAXES

By now we have all heard of President Obama's Don't do as I do, do as I say on heating and food. I would just like to say, I would like to too. I received my 2nd utility bill from my self imposed cut backs. It was $500. I am cold in my house of 68 degrees most of the day. I am not doing this to save the planet, for I do not believe in the theory of Global Warming or Climate Change. No, I am cutting back to save something else: money. This is what makes Obama's tropical President Barack Obabma's Bahamas temperature Oval office so offensive. He DOES believe in Global Warming. He will promote Cap and Trade and Carbon credits that will raise utility prices across the board. His Cap and Trade and alternative energy plans will make my $500/month utility bill look like the good ole days

Man's solutions now BIG problems for environment

Energy, Environment, Going Green, Government / Bureaucracy, Unintended consequences

carp

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Oh brother! A bovine "gas" tax?

Environment, Going Green, Slipping fast!, TAXES, THE ECONOMY

 http://online.wsj.com/article/SB122913405823603643.html

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Global Warming tough sell, but Obama still buys what Gore is selling

Conservatives, Energy, Environment, Follow the money, Going Green, Obama 2008, TAXES, Truth, Unintended consequences, Weather

There is a lot at stake for former Vice President Al Gore with the Global Warming* issue. Without the threat of Global Warming, he is rather out of a job. Who would hire Al Gore to come speak about the threat of normal weather? Without Global Warming, who would ever buy a carbon credit from the corporation he is affiliated with? Without Global Warming, Al Gore just becomes another washed up Vice President who did not make it to the ultimate status prize of the presidency.

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Global warming -"Is the cure worse than the disease?"

Conservatives, Environment, Going Green, Unintended consequences

http://www.onenewsnow.com/Culture/Default.aspx?id=339440 

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OOPS, NASA used Sept. temperatures for Oct.'s data

Energy, Environment, Going Green, Obama 2008, Truth, Weather

Do you ever get the feeling that those who believe in Global Warming don't want to be confused by the facts?

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China, sonar and save the whales

Environment, United States, War

http://www.ibdeditorials.com/IBDArticles.aspx?id=311472197935171 

Free (From) Willy

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Tough sell: Global warming in 2008 & Doyle's trip to Bev. Hills

Energy, Environment, Going Green, THE ECONOMY, Weather, WISCONSIN

 

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Tax credits for solar and wind

Energy, Environment, Going Green, TAXES, THE ECONOMY

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Carp seemed like a good idea at the time or Don't mess with nature!

Environment, Government / Bureaucracy, Unintended consequences, WARNING, Water

 http://www.jsonline.com/story/index.aspx?id=802759 Surge in Asian carp could lead to expanded range Oct. 5, 2008

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Chilling news: Where is solar wind? (Global... COOLING)

Environment, Going Green, Weather

http://www.ibdeditorials.com/IBDArticles.aspx?id=307234476244126

The Day The Earth Cooled

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House of Reps started talking about DRILLING because of you!

Elections, Energy, Environment, Legislation, McCain 2008, Obama 2008, THE ECONOMY

Have you noticed that the mood of the country has changed regarding energy?

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Lower temperatures and country's mood quell global warming ferver

Elections, Energy, Environment, Going Green, McCain 2008, Obama 2008, Weather

Have you noticed that this summer was cooler than usual? That fact, coupled with our recent cold and snowy winter, takes the subject of Global Warming off the front burner.

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Al Gore is no Ralph Nader

Energy, Environment, Ethics, Going Green, Truth

I don't agree with Ralph Nader on most things, but at least he practices what he preaches. Can't say the same for Al Gore.

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"Inconvenient Fact(s)" Re:100% zero-carbon electricity in 10 years

Bigger picture, Common sense, Energy, Environment, Ethanol, Going Green, Truth

Most of us heard about Al Gore's JFK-like 10 year challenge last week for "America to run 'on 100% zero-carbon electricity in 10 years." Bret Stephens wrote about it and Al Gore in his Wall Street Journal piece, Al Gore's Doomsday Clock. He wrote, "though that's just the first step on his road to 'ending our reliance on carbon-based fuels.'  Serious people understand this is absurd. Maybe other people will start drawing the same conclusion about the man proposing it."

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Cost of "Hot Air Tour," Tailgate, and Brewer Game July 26th

Conservatives, Energy, Environment, Free, Special events

UPDATE: The Hot Air Tour rally location has been moved to AFP headquarters at 1126 S. 70th St, West Allis, 1:30pm.

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Science lesson: "Our Mr. Sun," CO2, and the Germans

Bigger picture, Energy, Environment, Ethanol, Going Green

One of the benefits of being a homeschool mom is that essentially I had a refresher course on grades 1-12. (English skills are still rough!) It's been 39 years since I graduated from high school, but even without homeschooling, one thing I never forgot were the basics of photosynthesis. Seems like some of the Global Warmingists could use a refresher course too.

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Offshore Drilling Doesn't Always = Oil Spills

Energy, Environment, Legislation

When I think of oil spills, my mind goes immediately to the Exxon Valdez. Remember that one? In my mind's eye I can still see volunteers trying to wash off animals and rocks with toothbrushes and Dawn detergent. 

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UPDATE: Last Chance to Weigh In on State Global Warming Task Force by today, 5PM

Energy, Environment, Going Green, Legislation, WISCONSIN

Today is your last chance to weigh in on the Governor's Global Warming Task Force.

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Phew! Lots of Hot Air Stops Global Warming Cap-and-Trade Bill

Energy, Environment, Going Green, Legislation, McCain 2008, Obama 2008, TAXES

Just in case you missed this from the weekend news, the Sunday Journal reported in its Congress Following the Vote column,

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Ford Has A Better Idea: Export Manufacturing to Non-Green Countries

Energy, Environment, Going Green, Government / Bureaucracy, TAXES, THE ECONOMY, Unintended consequences

Sunday we returned from a few days in Dearborn Michigan touring the Henry Ford Museum, Greenfield Village, and The Rouge Ford Factory. The Rouge Factory Tour was new to us. There was Bill Ford, the great grandson of Henry, up on the BIG screen telling us how Ford created this new Rouge factory to be friendly to the environment.

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Cap-and-Trade? Maybe It Should Be Called Cap-and-Raid!

Energy, Environment, Going Green, Government / Bureaucracy, Legislation, McCain 2008, Obama 2008, TAXES, THE ECONOMY, Unintended consequences

Last night I heard Senator Inhofe (R-Oklahoma) on the Mark Levin Show.  They were discussing S. 2191, the Senate "Lieberman/Warner Global Warming Bill and the disastrous effect this would have not on just the country as a whole, but the individual." (My emphasis throughout post.)

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You Can't Wash Your Car But The Car Wash Can?

City of Brookfield, Development, Environment, Legislation, Water

It is watering restriction season for Waukesha County, but in Brookfield, lawn watering, pool filling, and car washing* is restricted whether you are on a private well or municipal water every day of the year.

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Let them eat (and drink) ethanol ala Marie Antoinette

Energy, Environment, Ethanol, Going Green, Legislation, Truth, Unintended consequences

Marie Antoinette's "Let them eat cake" is quoted a lot these days in regard to ethanol and rising food prices. There are many interpretations as to what she meant by it--some debate whether she said it at all.

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Can we just start drilling now?

Energy, Environment, Government / Bureaucracy, Unintended consequences

Yesterday, I had an opportunity to listen to part of the President's Press Conference on Rush Limbaugh. (I had a lot of ironing to do!) He began by stating it was "a tough time for our economy." Then he listed a few areas that affect our wallets, "from gas and food prices to mortgage and tuition bills." Those concerns mentioned don't affect every American, but the first two do--and they are related. I am going to focus on gas prices today.

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America's Climate Security Act "Catastrophic For Wisconsin"

Environment, Going Green, Government / Bureaucracy, Legislation, TAXES, THE ECONOMY, Unintended consequences, WISCONSIN

Congressman Sensenbrenner brought up Senate bill S. 2191, the Lieberman/Warner "America's Climate Security Act of 2007" at his Town Hall meeting Sunday. He described it as a "disaster for Wisconsin."

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Congressman Sensenbrenner's Town Hall Meeting

Environment, Ethanol, Government / Bureaucracy, TAXES, THE ECONOMY, Unintended consequences, WISCONSIN

I attended Congressman Sensenbrenner's Town Hall Meeting Sunday. Attendance was light--maybe 2 dozen people (mostly men). Perhaps the early start time kept people away?

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See Spot. See Spot On Sun? Oh No, Only One!

Environment, Going Green

Sorry to ruin the fun, but an ice age cometh, and right on the heels of Earth Day! Seems there might be another nail in the coffin of Global Warming. This one comes from the lack of sunspots.

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