All content, of both the original and this blog, is written from my point of view and is my opinion. I believe it to be accurate at the time it is written. ~ Kyle Prast, Brookfield resident since 1986

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Wisconsin gets another chance for Gogebic Taconite iron mine

It is not often a state gets a do-over, but it looks like Wisconsin will have another opportunity to woo Gogebic Taconite to open an iron mine--with its 700 good paying jobs--in Ashland County.

With Republicans gaining a healthier majority in the State Senate, passage of the Assembly's mining bill for streamlining of the mining approval process is likely. And with a passed mining bill, Gogebic Taconite says they are still interested in Wisconsin.

Because State Senate Republicans are no longer dependent on their weakest link, Sen. Dale Schultz, they should be able to pass the streamlined mining approval bill. Ironically, now that passage seems inevitable, Democrat Senator Tim Cullen now invokes Thomas Jefferson's appeal for "broad support for sweeping change"! In Sunday's paper, Cullen made his plea for not ramming through legislation with a slim majority.

Cullen's plea, however, seems very out of character with Democrats' actions, both in state and in Washington. After all, didn't Cullen join with the other Democrat State Senators when the 14 fled the state to deny the Senate Republicans from having a quorum during the Act 10 battle? And though he flirted with leaving the Democrat caucus in July, 3 days later he rejoined them with a promise of chairing 2 newly created committees--one being Mining.

As for Democrats in the U.S. Senate, didn't Harry Reid tweak and torture Senate rules to pass Obamacare on the slimmest of majorities? Hardly following Thomas Jefferson's appeal for broad support for sweeping change! Cullen stood with both Obama and Tammy Baldwin in the last election, so I guess that shows how much Cullen really values Thomas Jefferson's words of wisdom.

Since the introduction of iron mining would be a great boon for all of Wisconsin, I would like to think Democrats could put partisanship aside and do what is best for the state. Keep in mind the mining bill includes environmental protections, and iron mining is akin to quarrying, which goes on all over our state, it is not toxic strip mining. And the 700 jobs? Those are promised to be 95% union jobs, certainly a boon to economically challenged northern Wisconsin.

However, putting partisanship aside doesn't seem to be the direction state Democrats wish to move in: they just named Democrat Chris Larson as their Minority Leader. (Larson is a true liberal, believing that reducing government is reducing democracy!)

No doubt a passed mining bill will end up tangled in the Madison courts, just as our passed Voter ID and Act 10 have. But at least we should be able to jump the first hurdle of passing the mining legislation. The court battle will have to be overcome another day*.

*Note: Wisconsin has an extremely important State Supreme Court race coming up in April 2013, where we must reelect Justice Pat Roggensack.

Walker: With new bill, mining company will return 
Best mining bill would have wide support 
UPDATE: Sen. Tim Cullen rejoins Democratic Caucus
Democrats elected Chris Larson as state Senate leader
Sen Chris Larson Says, "Reducing Government" is Reducing Democracy"
Hurley residents decry 'devastating' collapse of Wisconsin mining bill
The importance of the upcoming WI Supreme Court race to Republicans 
Wisconsin Justice Pat Roggensack
Past Posts:
State mining bill on life support, call Senators to save! March 9, 2012
Wisconsin Tea Party Reaction to Mining Debacle  March 9, 2012
Wisconsin Senate mining bill took wrong turn, now better Feb. 15, 2012

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Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Thanksgiving recipe mainstays: turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, yams, cranberry raw relish, apple, pecan, and pumpkin pie

The following is a re-post of What's on your Thanksgiving menu? and recipes from a few years ago with a few additions. Recipe links are below.

The turkey is the star of our Thanksgiving table, if you ask my husband. I like it too, but I don't have the same devotion to the bird that he does. If I just made a BIG turkey, lots of mashed potatoes and gravy, stuffing, fresh cranberry salad, and pie, my menfolk would consider the meal perfect.

But for my sister and I, it is the other things that make the meal complete. We love tossed salad with homemade vinaigrette dressing and a vegetable such as fresh green beans or fresh broccoli, cauliflower, and carrots with browned butter*. These are must haves in our book. (She usually brings the salad and veggies.)

In other words, we like vegetables that taste like vegetables. No pistachio pudding/fruit salad or green bean casserole or sweet potatoes with marshmallows for us. (If those items are on your must have list, great. I just figure we consume enough calories at this meal, I rather save my appetite and capacity for important things like the main course and pie!) Sometimes I might serve pickled beets or a sweet pickle of some sort to act like a taste-bud punctuation mark.

Every family has their standbys and favorites that make their Thanksgiving meal complete, and I would like to hear about your traditions.

But let's not forget that whatever is on our menu, Thanksgiving is a day to gather together with loved ones and give thanks to God for his blessings.

Thankfulness is the soil in which joy thrives

Today, I must go finish up some shopping at the Elm Grove Sendiks. They are one of my last convenient sources for pasteurized whipping cream (not ultra pasteurized) for the pumpkin and pecan pie. (Pick 'n Save used to carry the cream but don't anymore. Maybe that is one reason they fell behind on the 2010 Brookfieldnow grocery store preference poll?) UPDATE: I was happy to find pasteurized whipping cream at Trader Joe's!

Turkey: I stuff and roast the bird upside down for the complete cooking time. This makes the white meat much more juicy. This method doesn't make for the best presentation, but it does yield the best results for me. If presentation is important, you can flip it during the roasting time after about 3 hours.

Stuffing: Thanksgiving favorites: Kyle's stuffing You can make this the night before but don't stuff bird until cooking time.

Mashed potatoes:  Use Idaho or Russet potatoes. I usually figure on 2 potatoes per person, that way, I have plenty for the leftover meals that follow. About an hour and a quarter before you anticipate serving, peel the potatoes, rinse, and cut into 1 inch pieces. As you cut them up, drop them into a large kettle with plenty of cold water--to keep from darkening. (You can hold them like this until cooking time. Potatoes are a root vegetable, so you bring them to a boil, instead of dropping into boiling water. Some cooks like to add a small chopped onion and/or garlic to raw potatoes for added flavor.)

Start cooking at least 45 minutes before mealtime, add about 1 teaspoon salt to the water. Cover and put on high heat, until the potatoes come to a boil. (There should be ample water to cover potatoes and ample room in kettle to accommodate vigorous boiling.) Turn down heat to maintain a moderate boil--cook until tender--about 20-25 minutes. Test with a fork. The potato should easily yield to the fork. Take off heat. You can hold them in the hot water until you are ready to mash.

Drain the potatoes--remember to save the potato water for the gravy. Add about 1/3C of half and half or milk and put about 3T of butter into the bottom of the potato kettle. Let the butter melt before mashing. You can use a potato masher, ricer, or hand held mixer to mash. Add more milk/cream as needed to make a fluffy mashed potato--remember it is better to add cream little by little than to add too much! Taste and salt to taste. (I tend to be a low-salt cook, figuring the gravy is the real seasoning agent.) Once the potatoes reach the proper consistency, put them into a covered serving dish and set aside. Once the turkey comes out of oven, you can turn down the heat and keep the covered dish of mashed potatoes in oven until serving time.

Baked-in-their-skins yams are on the nice to have list. I just cut the ends off to let the steam out and toss on the oven rack at 350 degrees until tender about 1 1/2 hours before serving time. If done early, take them out of oven and return to heat up before serving.

Homemade gravy: 1 C flour, 1 C pan drippings, 8 C water. (Use your potato cooking water, green bean water, and plain water to make 8C.) Soak the flour in some of the water at least 1 hour before you make the gravy. After removing the turkey, pour off the fat and save.
De-glaze the pan with about half of the water, stirring constantly. Add the 1 C fat, then the flour and remaining water to make the proper consistency. Salt as needed. Strain if desired.

Cranberries: Kyle's Fresh Cranberry Relish: A happy accident (I also make the cooked ones: 1 bag berries, 1 C water, 1 C sugar. Simmer until all berries are popped.) Make each the day before, but don't mix the raw relish until Thanksgiving morning.

Pie: As American as Mom and Apple Pie Includes a cranberry apple variation, I make these early Thanksgiving morning before I put the turkey in the oven. Pumpkin pie is the recipe on the pumpkin can. Pecan Pie is from the 1965 Fanny Farmer Cookbook. I add twice as many pecans, however.

Pie crust: Easy as pie...really! Pie Crust Recipe

Browned butter: You can make this days ahead. In a heavy sauce pan or small saute' pan, place butter, whatever amount is desired, and put on low to medium heat. Butter will melt and as time goes on, the milk solids in the butter will start to brown and the mixture foams a bit. Watch it and stir it occasionally to prevent burning. Brown until a medium brown. It will continue to brown a bit after you remove it from the heat, so until you are experienced, err on the side of underdone. You can always heat it more. It has a delicious nutty flavor that goes well with vegetables. 

Turkey leftovers - soup: The Turkey's Last Stand

Enjoy your day! We are truly blessed.

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Sunday, November 18, 2012

Welcome Trader Joe's, just in time for Thanksgiving

The new Trader Joe's in Brookfield opened on Monday,  Nov. 5th, and I breezed in after 7pm to find the parking lot jammed and the store packed. Guess people are excited to have another Trader Joe's in the area! And since Thanksgiving is fast approaching, customers will welcome their specialty foods, such as precooked turkey and turkey gravy. I understand their seasonal offerings are not to be missed.

Trader Joe's, known for good quality, healthy food at great prices, gives shoppers lots of choices. (I picked up a 12oz can of Dark Sumatra coffee today for $5.99. I'm interested in how it will stack up to my current favorite Sumatra from Alterra.)

But Trader Joe's also celebrates appointing their stores in a delightfully low-tech way. Their store signs are black boards with colorful chalk captions and prices. They don't have conveyor belts, but rather all wood check out stands. Bringing your own bag is encouraged, though they will give you one if you need. And when a cashier needs assistance, they ring their ship's bell!

Each store has its own unique design flavor, in fact, Trader Joe's loved the fact that the building site wasn't perfectly rectangular. Our Brookfield store features a bit of flower power and murals of local attractions such as the Dousman Inn on Pilgrim Road, the old train station at Brookfield Junction on Brookfield Road, Miller Park stadium and more.

Since I have been pushing for a Trader Joe's for years, even before it was an option for Underwood Crossing, you can imagine my delight in having this store within hiking distance of my house. I suspect I will still be using Aldi and the Elm Grove Sendik's for many purchases, but Trader Joe's will be a welcome addition to my favorite shopping spots.

Check it out!

Past Posts:
Hope things go well for Target / Trader Joes: Public Hearing, Jan. 2012
A Whole Lotta Diggin' Goin' On in SE Brookfield Aug. 24, 2011
Brookfield's proposed Target Store Public Hearing: Dec. 7, 2010 7:45pm, UPDATE and maps
Can it be? A Target in Brookfield? How about a Trader Joe's too? March 12, 2010
In Praise of Aldi's AND Trader Joe's: Wish We Had Both! June 4, 2008

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Friday, November 16, 2012

Gov. Walker says he will NOT set up exchanges

This just in, Gov. Scott Walker officially notified the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services "that Wisconsin will not build a state-based health insurance exchange and will defer to the federal Government's insurance exchange."

Yesterday afternoon, talk show host Mark Belling talked about this, that the word was, Wisconsin would be joining with 19 other states opting out of creating their own exchanges.

The Governor's letter restates the dilemma: "No matter which option is chosen, Wisconsin taxpayers will not have meaningful control over the health care policies and services sold to Wisconsin residents. If the state option is chosen; however, Wisconsinites face risk from a federal mandate lacking long-term guaranteed funding."

And if you called the Governor, you are mentioned in the letter: "...after much consideration and outreach with citizens across the state [that's you!], and in the best interest of the taxpayers of Wisconsin, we have determined Wisconsin will not develop a partnership or state-based exchange."

State Senator Leah Vukmir is on Vicki McKenna right now talking about this. I urge you to listen to the podcast when it becomes available: Hour 1, Part 1 11-16-12. Vukmir says there could be more states doing the same, and some Democrat governors have joined in the opt-out. She also mentioned a few mandates we would be spared from.

Illinois, Minnesota, and Michigan are said to be setting up the exchanges, so if you are a mid-west business, where would you rather locate?

In a related issue,  HHS Secretary Kathleen Sibelius just announced she is "granting them [governors] an extension to Dec. 14 on the decision." Hmm, I wonder why she is doing that? I am sure they are hoping to peel off a few of those 20 resistant governors.

The 10th Amendment might be finally getting its day in the sun: "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States, respectively, or to the people."

Here is another thought: If a state spends its own taxpayer money to fund their own exchange, aren't we still required to pay our federal taxes, a portion of which go to funding the federal health care exchanges? It's a variation of spreading the wealth around in my opinion. In effect, it would mean states with exchanges are paying twice.

If the 20 states stay united, thus not funding the government mandate, where is the federal government going to get the money to fund their mandate? (Republicans hold the majority in the House, where all funding bills originate.)

I am sure we will know more as time goes on, but at least we have dodged this first bullet. And taking a page from the Democrats, any measure to slow down the process is progress. This push-back could lead to more.

Gov. Scott Walker's letter to Secretary Sebelius
HHS Extends Exchange Deadline a Month 
Analysis: 20 states will run their health-law exchanges 

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Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Gov. Walker, please, no exchange, take backdoor to escape ObamaCare

In the wake of Tuesday's election results, the grim realization that we are not going to be able to escape ObamaCare started to sink in. But Vicki McKenna floated the idea last week that there was a backdoor way to prevent ObamaCare from taking root in Wisconsin--don't set up the state-run exchange.

Also last week, National Review posted an article by the CATO Institute informing us that Obamacare Is Still Vulnerable.  The Obama "administration has asked state officials to decide by Friday, November 16, whether their state will create one of Obamacare's health-insurance 'exchanges.' States also have to decide whether to implement the law's massive expansion of Medicaid. The correct answer to both questions remains a resounding no." (My emphasis)  Unfortunately, we don't have the luxury of time to think about this.

So we need to act fast by contacting Governor Walker and our State Legislators, asking them to NOT set up these ObamaCare health-insurance exchanges. Calling has more impact than email and please be polite. I emailed last night, "I urge you to stand against creating a Wisconsin ObamaCare health insurance exchange. It is our only hope of sparing us from the oppression and expense of ObamaCare. Please stand with all of us who stood by you. Sincerely..." 

Call Governor Walker  (608) 266-1212, if you cannot get through, email: and then call later. I called this morning and they said they were getting a lot of calls against creating exchanges.

Look up your legislators here: Assembly   Senate

I also called my State Senator Leah Vukmir (608) 266-2512. Her aid said she is against setting up the exchanges, but call her anyway. Your calls supporting her stance are very important.  Email:

Assembly Representatives: Paul Farrow  (608) 266-5120 Email:, Dale Kooyenga   (608) 266-9180  Email:   Rob Hutton  (Takes office in 2013, but you can share your opinion anyway.) (414) 380-9665 Email:

In addition to your calls, 20 Wisconsin Tea Party groups sent an open letter to Governor Scott Walker, urging him to declare "NO!" in regard to creating a Wisconsin Obamacare exchange.

Why not create the exchange? Michael Cannon at CATO writes, "State-created exchanges mean higher taxes, fewer jobs, and less protection of religious freedom. States are better off defaulting to a federal exchange. The Medicaid expansion is likewise too costly and risky a proposition. Republican Governors Association chairman Bob McDonnell (R.,Va.) agrees, and has announced that Virginia will implement neither provision."

The article lists 12 reasons to reject creating ObamaCare exchanges taken from CATO:
1. states are under no obligation to create one.
2. operating an Obamacare exchange would be illegal in 14 states...who enacted either statutes or amendments forbidding state employees to participate in an essential exchange function...
3. each exchange would cost its state an estimated $10 million to $100 million per year, necessitating tax increases.
4. the November 16 deadline is no more real than the "deadlines" for implementing REAL ID, which have been pushed back repeatedly since 2008.
5.  states can always create an exchange later if they choose.
6.  a state-created exchange is not a state-controlled exchange. All exchanges will be controlled by Washington.
7. Congress authorized no funds for federal "fallback" exchanges. So Washington may not be able to impose Exchanges on states at all.
8.  the Obama administration has yet to provide crucial information that states need before they can make an informed decision.
9. creating an exchange sets state officials up to take the blame when Obamacare increases insurance premiums and denies care to the sick...
10. creating an exchange would be assisting in the creation of a "public option" that would drive domestic health-insurance carriers out of business through unfair competition.
11.  Obamacare remains unpopular. The latest Kaiser Family Foundation poll found that only 38 percent of the public supports it.
12.  defaulting to a federal exchange exempts a state's employers from the employer mandate — a tax of $2,000 per worker per year...

"Finally, rejecting an exchange reduces the federal deficit. Obamacare offers its deficit-financed subsidies to private health insurers only through state-created exchanges. If all states declined, federal deficits would fall by roughly $700 billion over ten years."

Exit polls revealed the majority of voters, even including those who voted for President Obama, are against ObamaCare, "Forty-nine percent of voters said they think the 2010 law should be either fully [26%] or partially repealed [23%], compared with 44 percent...[who support] "Those numbers come amid a growing belief that government is overstepping its role: the exit polls found that 53 percent of those surveyed said the government is doing too many things better left to businesses and individuals - a figure that’s risen 10 points since the 2008 election."

So this is our last stand against ObamaCare. Let's take it. Make those calls.

The CATO Institute: Obamacare Is Still Vulnerable
Politico: Exit Polls 2012: Split on Obamacare 
An Open Letter to Governor Scott Walker against creating ObamaCare exchange

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An Open Letter to Governor Scott Walker: No Obamacare Exchange

An Open Letter to Governor Scott Walker

Hand delivered, November 12th, 2012

Governor Walker:

Last January, Wisconsinites cheered when you sent back to the federal government a $38 million Early Innovator Grant that had bound the State of Wisconsin to establish an Obamacare exchange, along with an additional $11 million intended for integration of the state’s Medicaid system into that planned exchange.

We weren’t the only ones.

You earned the respect and gratitude of citizens across the United States and garnered the status of national hero for your principled courage in telling the Federal Department of Health and Human Services that Wisconsin would not move ahead with an exchange that compromised, in numerous respects, our state and its people. It made us want to fight that much harder to get you through the recall debacle and keep you in office.

Moreover, your actions provided valuable impetus to other state governments in standing against federal overreach, protecting their own sovereignty, and continuing to guarantee the liberty of their own citizens. Unquestionably, our nation would be far better off had the states not forgotten these clear duties for so long. Fortunately, with the help of leaders such as yourself, they have started to remember them.

Today, in the struggle against Obamacare, we have reached an even more critical juncture than that of last January. Wisconsin must remain in the vanguard of states declaring “NO!” and moving toward nullification.

The numbers alone demonstrate that there is no good reason to comply. The unfunded liabilities that an Obamacare exchange would force Wisconsin to absorb – estimated between $70 and $100 million dollars per year for our state – along with the costs to business, together quickly cancel out any and all of the gains you have thus far achieved via Act 10 and other economic steps taken over the past two years. The blow to businesses and families would be devastating in an already bleak economy.

Worse still, it would obliterate the constitutional liberties that you, as governor, are sworn to uphold and defend. If the sovereignty of the State of Wisconsin is sacrificed, the personal liberty of every single one of its citizens will likewise disappear. Such an outcome is unthinkable. It must not be permitted.

Wisconsin must stand.

As a significant and highly active portion of your base, we have defended you tirelessly through all of the battles of the last year and a half. We also came to the aid of legislators who stood with you on Act 10. We have done right by you. We now urge you to once again do right by us.

You are unquestionably being pressured by powerful lobbying firms and by the federal government alike as you make this decision. Undoubtedly, you face great temptation to take the path of least resistance. This is the moment of truth. What will you do?

The sovereignty of this state and the personal liberty of every single Wisconsinite is at stake – including the lives of the unborn, on whose behalf you have, to date, always advocated. No other considerations can compare to life and liberty.

As noted, a yes to Obamacare is not an option. We will not accept it. We are therefore waiting for you to issue an unequivocal, “NO!” When you do, we expect all Republican state legislators to stand with you, as will we.

Sincerely, the Undersigned:

Kim Mork Beloit Patriots Beloit, WI
Brian Garrow The Group Appleton, WI
Jayne Gohr Mayville TEA Party Mayville, WI
Joanne Terry Ozaukee Patriots Mequon, WI
Jeff Horn Prairie Patriots Sun Prairie, WI
Georgia Janisch Rock County Voter Education Forum Janesville, WI
Dan Horvatin Rock River Patriots Fort Atkinson, WI
John Meegan Sauk County Tea Party Baraboo, WI
Oriannah Paul Sheboygan Liberty Coalition Sheboygan, WI
Paul Lembrick Southern Wisconsin Alliance of Taxpayers Janesville, WI
Paul Bruno Tea Party Perspective Racine, WI
Charles Brey United in Freedom Beaver Dam, WI
Meg Ellefson Wausau TEA Party Wausau, WI
Kirsten Lombard  The Wisconsin 9/12 Project  Madison, WI
Seth Cowan Wolf River Area Patriots New London, WI
Ed Perkins and John Pierce Fox Valley Initiative  Appleton, WI
James Murphy Green Bay Tea Party Green Bay, WI
Ed Willing Founders Intent Caledonia, WI
Greg Luce La Crosse Tea Party La Crosse, WI
Darin Danelski Lake Country Area Defenders of Liberty Oconomowoc, WI

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Sunday, November 11, 2012

Creation Science Seminar: 'Answers Conference', November 16, 17, 2012, Brookfield, WI

Ever wonder if the book of Genesis is relevant today? What about dinosaurs, did they ever live with man? Is the earth really millions of years old or is it young? Does the rock and fossil record back up either claim? Have they ever found the remains of an apeman, or can we really believe there was an Adam as the Bible teaches?

If you do ever wonder about these things, you are not alone. These questions trouble many Christians today.

Dr. Terry Mortenson and Tim Chaffey, two well known Creation Science speakers from Answers in Genesis, will address these questions and more at the Using God's Word for the World's Questions ANSWERS CONFERENCE, this Friday evening, Nov. 16 and Saturday, Nov. 17. They will teach a biblical and scientific defense for the Christian faith and give new insights into our past.

The two-day Answers Conference is sponsored by the Creation Science Society of Milwaukee and Brookside Baptist Church. It is designed to equip Christians with the facts necessary to defend the foundational truth of the Genesis account in the Bible. It will also show that the basis for evolution is not founded in rocks and fossils but rather in an anti-biblical worldview.

The conference is free and open to the public, but a free will offering will be taken. All sessions will take place at Brookside Baptist Church, 4470 N. Pilgrim Rd., Brookfield, Wisconsin. Get Directions

Friday, November 16
5:00 PM           Registration
6:30 PM           Tim Chaffey – Is Genesis Relevant in Today’s World?
7:45 PM           Dr. Terry Mortenson – Dinosaurs: Have You Been Brainwashed?

Saturday, November 17
8:00 AM          Registration
9:30 AM          Dr. Terry Mortenson – Millions of Years: Where Did the Idea Come From?
10:45 AM        Dr. Terry Mortenson – Noah’s Flood: Washing Away Millions of Years
Break for lunch on your own
1:00 PM           Tim Chaffey – Demolishing Supposed Bible Contradictions
2:15 PM           Dr. Terry Mortenson – Ape-men , Adam & the Gospel (followed by Q&A) 

Dr. TerryMortenson is a theologian, historian of geology, and author for Answers in Genesis (AiG). With a PhD in history of geology from the University of Coventry in England, Dr. Mortenson has been studying and speaking on the creation-evolution controversy in 21 countries since the late 1970s. Many of his popular lectures have been produced as DVDs and TV programs. He also holds a Master of Divinity degree from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, IL. Like many creationists, Mortenson grew up in an education system that taught evolution as fact. He began to see the fallacy of the idea of millions of years of evolution in his early college years. 

Tim Chaffey holds a B.S. and two M.A. degrees in Biblical and Theological Studies. Chaffey is the founder and director of Midwest Apologetics, a ministry dedicated to defending the word of God from the beginning to the end. He is an apologist with a passion for training young people; he speaks regularly at AiG’s Creation Museum, camps, schools, and churches. Chaffey specializes in the Creation vs. Evolution controversy, which led him to write his first book, Old-Earth Creationism on Trial: The Verdict Is In (co-authored with Jason Lisle, Ph.D. in Astrophysics.)

For more information:
Creation Science Society of Milwaukee's website Genesis Matters
Call 1-800-242-7643

In addition to conducting about 250 conferences such as this one each year, Answers in Genesis founded the high-tech CreationMuseum in Kentucky, which opened to international acclaim in 2007.  Its outreaches also include an award-winning web site, Answers magazine and the Answers radio program.

Answers in Genesis is currently embarking on a new project called Ark Encounter, which will include full-scale replicas of Noah’s Ark (including a zoo), the Tower of Babel, a pre-flood Walled City and more.

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Monday, November 05, 2012

Hoping, praying for a Chick-fil-A kind of election day

In 2010, JT Harris asked the crowd of about 150 people waiting to see US Senate candidate Ron Johnson at the Waukesha County Republican Headquarters, How many of you are asking God for one more chance to turn this around? My hand shot up as did most in the room.

At the time, we had no idea how that 2010 midterm election would change the course of our state and nation. Nor did we have any idea how much worse things would get in the 2 years that followed.

Who could have envisioned our national debt hitting $16 trillion? Or unemployment never falling below where we started in 2009? Who could have predicted President Obama disregarding the 1st Amendment with his attack on Catholic hospitals? Or the Dream Act immigration reform by fiat? And the list goes on and on. The election hasn't even concluded and the President is killing off the coal industry through the EPA. A ban on fracking for oil won't be far behind. No legislation, just regulation.

So as the polls report Romney is ahead--no, it's Obama, I'm praying it will be a Chick-fil-A kind of election day.

Remember back in August, how people stood in lines that wrapped around the block, just to buy a sandwich to show support for Chick-fil-A? The fast food company's CEO had made a statement against gay marriage and was suffering some backlash for it. So Mike Huckabee cooked up a "Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day" to affirm a business that operates on Christian principles, by eating at the restaurant. And appreciate they did! Some customers that day were gay but joined in because they believed in free speech. The public had finally had enough, and they voted with their pocketbook to show support, with record breaking sales and crowds.

Well, I'm hoping for much the same in voter turnout for Romney and other conservative candidates today. I'm praying for an election day where voters, in record numbers, go to the polls and vote for the founding values our country was built upon.

People are praying about this election, and its not just superficial. There is a sense of urgency here. Two friends of mine each emailed me how they were praying about the election. (Neither know each other and we are of different faiths.) One wrote, "I'm praying a couple of times a day (yes, me!) that America find a clear path to Her future Tuesday." Another emailed, "I voted early for him - now I've got everything crossed & praying daily (hourly!). Here's hoping!"

By 10 PM Tuesday, we should have some idea which way the election will go. It has been a long 4 years.

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Nov. 6, 2012 Wisconsin ballot picks: Romney, Thompson, Ryan, Hutton, Kooyenga, Gudex ...

In person absentee voting is over in Wisconsin, so this Tuesday, the big "E" day* is it! It's the day we can return the United States to its Constitutional roots. Voter turnout is key, so disregard the latest polling data, which is often very skewed (CNN called it a tie but used D+11 to get there. In 2008 it was D+7 !) Just go vote Republican to preserve liberty.

If you still need some inspiration, watch these young teens' plea in Voices Without a Vote.

Voting and Poll Information: If you don't know what districts you live in, specific directions for finding your specific ballot here.  

This year, depending on where you live, you may need to vote for the same person in 2 different races on the ballot: Residents in Congressman Paul Ryan's Congressional District 1, MUST remember to vote Ryan for Congress  IN ADDITION to voting for the Romney/Ryan Presidential ticket. If you fail to remember, the Democrat Congressman could win and Republicans will lose the seat.

Same situation for Wisconsin State Assembly District residents in Paul Farrow's District 98 and Chris Kapenga's District 99. Constituents must vote for them in TWO places on their ballots:Once in the Assembly race and again in the 33rd Wisconsin State Senate District Primary. If you forget to vote for Farrow or Kapenga in their Assembly races, the opposing Democrat candidates could prevail.

Polls open at 7am and close at 8pm. If you aren't in line at 8pm, you will not be allowed to vote. Listed below are my picks for the major races on Brookfield's and neighboring areas Nov. 6, 2012 Presidential & General Election ballot. Being the conservative I am, I am voting for the Republican in all races, because we don't belong to the government as Democrats declared at their convention, the government belongs to us!  However, you must vote for each individual candidate, because Wisconsin no longer offers a straight party ticket choice. 

So here it goes, from the major races to the more specific in our area of the state, in the same order they appear on your ballot. Each race and candidate name will be in bold, so you can easily scroll down and find them, with candidate websites and pertinent links below.

However, before you scroll down the page to find your specific district races, Waukesha County voters should know the only contested county government race on their ballot is WAUKESHA COUNTY CLERK.  Kathleen Novack the Republican is running against a Democrat. This might seem like an unimportant race, but as anyone involved with election observing, poll watching, or observing recounts knows, we need a Republican in this position!  Vote Novack.

PRESIDENT of the UNITED STATESMitt Romney / Paul Ryan (Republican) 
This is the most important election of my lifetime. Like Ronald Reagan after Jimmy Carter, I believe Mitt Romney is the right man for such a time such this. Romney supports biblical values, repealing ObamaCare, lower taxes, energy independence, job creation, etc. He offers Real Change From Day One. In fact, Madison's liberal Wisconsin State Journal endorsed Mitt Romney: "Not enough hope and too little change. ...This is not an easy endorsement to make. ...We endorsed Obama for change last time around. Now we’re endorsing change again: Mitt Romney."
Romney for President
21 Newspapers Switch to Romney 
Ann Coulter: Romney is what the country needs now
CNN's Erin Burnett fact-checked Obama's second term plan, it's old and doesn't add up.

US SENATOR:  Tommy G. Thompson (Republican)
All of Wisconsin votes for US Senator. My vote goes to Tommy Thompson for a whole host of reasons but mainly to be the 51st vote to repeal ObamaCare and help Republicans gain the majority in the Senate. If they don't, the gridlock continues: Democrat Senate Majority Leader already said he won't work with Romney (or the Republican House). Tommy would also be another vote against Supreme Court activist justices (think Kagan and Sotamayor) and a vote for Supreme Court Originalist Justices, who would follow the Constitution.
Madison's Wisconsin State Journal: Tommy best to tackle Washington  gridlock
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Baldwin's voting record places her among top liberals

Tommy Thompson, Wisconsin & all of U.S need you to stop ObamaCare

US CONGRESSIONAL RACES                                                                            

CONGRESSIONAL - DISTRICT 1:  Paul Ryan (Republican)
In addition to voting for the Mitt Romney / Paul Ryan ticket for President, residents in District 1 will vote for Ryan in the Congressional race. This is because Paul Ryan was picked by Mitt Romney for Vice President, and Wisconsin's Favorite Son Rule allows him to be on the ballot twice. If the Romney/Ryan ticket prevails, there will be a special election next year to fill his seat. District 1 includes parts of New Berlin, and fans out from there to cover the southeastern corner of the state.
Paul Ryan House Website
Paul Ryan for U.S. Congress

CONGRESSIONAL - DISTRICT 4:  Dan Sebring (Republican)   
Vote Dan Sebring so"In November we can say, 'No Moore'!" District 4 has been redistricted to now include Bayside, Fox Point, Whitefish Bay, Shorewood, Glendale, Brown Deer, most of Milwaukee, and south along the shoreline to South Milwaukee. People I know in these areas are livid that they lost Jim Sensenbrenner and now have Gwen Moore as their representative.

Republican Dan Sebring hopes to change that with his candidacy. He says, "You have a choice of whether you would like to embrace my opponent’s collectivist vision that “it takes a village” and you need government assistance in order to succeed, or my vision that you, the individual should be making decisions that determine your own destiny, without government interference." Sebring is endorsed by 4 Pro-life groups, Senators Alberta Darling and Leah Vukmir, among many others. Check out his issues page. He has pledged to oppose any debt limit increases unless Congress adopts Cut, Cap, and Balance.

Even though we are bombarded with non-stop political ads, I never tire of hearing his 'No Moore' ad featuring Gwen herself screeching, "Scott Walker, you gotta go baby, cuz we don't want you no more!" 
District 4 map
Dan Sebring for US Congress
Listen to Sebring's 'No Moore' ad on job creation

Jim Sensenbrenner is running unopposed, but he still gets my support.

STATE SENATE    -    Wisconsin needs to regain its majority here 

STATE SENATE - DISTRICT 4:  David D King (Independent)
Independent David King is running for State Senate against Democrat Lena Taylor in the 4th district. He would be a welcome change! Certainly more favorable to job creating,  pro-family, and pro-business legislation.
David King for State Senate
Senate District 4 map includes Assembly Districts 10, 11, 12

STATE SENATE - DISTRICT 18:  Rick Gudex (Republican) Sen. Leah Vukmir alerted me to Rick Gudex, a pro-jobs, fiscal conservative. He is in the Fond du Lac area running against the incumbent Democrat, who won in the 2011 recall election against Republican Randy Hopper. I would love to see this district return to the Republican column. We need to gain a healthy majority in the State Senate if we want to see good for Wisconsin legislation passed such as the mining bill. Don't forget voter ID and Act 10 are mired down in the Dane County Judicial snare.
Rick Gudex for Senate
Senate District 18 map includes Assembly Districts 12, 13, 14

STATE SENATE - DISTRICT 20:  Glenn Grothman (Republican)
Grothman is a solid conservative in the West Bend area.

STATE SENATE - DISTRICT 28: Mary Lazich (Republican)
Lazich from New Berlin represents suburbs to our south.

STATE SENATE - DISTRICT 33:  Vacant Seat - Primary election in District 33 between Republican Assembly Representatives Paul Farrow and Christ Kapenga.
Former State Senator Rich Zipperer resigned his Senate seat to join Governor Walker's administration as Deputy Chief of Staff and Senior Legal Counsel to the Governor. Residents of the 33rd Senate District will choose between Farrow and Kapenga, who presently each serve in Wisconsin's Assembly (If I lived in the 33rd, I would be hard pressed to choose between them.)

Chris Kapenga is a CPA and business owner, who states he's pro jobs, pro business, pro life, for limited government.
Paul Farrow platform is much the same. He is endorsed by Lt. Gov. Kleefisch, Sen. Leah Vukmir, and a host of others.
Senate District 33 map includes Assembly Districts 97, 98, 99 - Hartford, Lisbon, Pewaukee, west Brookfield, Waukesha areas.

WISCONSIN STATE ASSEMBLY                                                                       

ASSEMBLY - DISTRICT 13:   Rob Hutton (Republican)
This is an open seat due to redistricting, so there is no incumbent. However, Brookfield native Rob Hutton does have a very  liberal Democrat opponent from Wauwatosa, who signed the recall, failed in bid for mayor, and is adamantly against voucher schools.

The new new district now includes southern Brookfield, Elm Grove, Wauwatosa, West Allis and Milwaukee. In Brookfield, it combined the southern half of the former 98th and former 14th Districts. I was not too pleased when I was redistricted out of the 14th Assembly District, because it meant losing my Rep. Dale Kooyenga. But Conservative businessman Rob Hutton will be a very worthy replacement.

Hutton is in fact endorsed by Representative Kooyenga, as well as former State Senator Ted Kanavas. Hutton ran a vigorous primary campaign by visiting  over 7,000 homes in District 13, "...talking to people and really listening to what are their top-of-mind issues". By restructuring his responsibilities at his business Rock Transfer & Storage, Inc., Hutton is ready to make representing us in Madison his priority.
Rob Hutton Website: Conservative Republican for Wisconsin State Assembly 13th District
Facebook: Rob Hutton
Past Post: Rob Hutton for Wisconsin Assembly District 13
GOP Assembly Candidates from District 13, 14, 15 Share Belief Wisconsin is Headed Right Direction 

ASSEMBLY - DISTRICT 14:  Dale Kooyenga (Republican Incumbent)
Dale Kooyenga, served in Iraq, now is a Captain in US Army Reserve. He brings his CPA skills and small business experience to Madison. Kooyenga was my former representative prior to redistricting. He now represents northern Brookfield, Wauwatosa, and a small portion of Milwaukee. "On a daily basis I am working for fiscal accountability, freedom and liberty (e.g. free market principles) and for an overall strong Wisconsin."

In spring, Kooyenga was appointed as Vice-Chair to a Legislative Council Study Special Symposium Series to Study State Income Tax Reform Did you know Wisconsin was rated 43rd least favorable tax states for business, and that some Wisconsinites pay no income tax but still receive a tax refund? We need reform!
Past Post: Sept. 7, 2010 "I have decided on Dale Kooyenga. His platform and endorsements resonate with me..."

Representative Dale Kooyenga Home Page
GOP Assembly Candidates from District 13, 14, 15 Share Belief Wisconsin is Headed Right Direction 
Dale Kooyenga For State Assembly  Conservative Republican

ASSEMBLY - DISTRICT 15:    Joe Sanfelippo  (Republican)
Joe Sanfelippo, a voice of sanity on the Milwaukee County Board,  states he is running for Wisconsin Assembly District 15  "To protect the future for our kids by building on the progress we have made so far."  This is an open seat. He is endorsed by  State Reps Kuglitsch, Craig, Knodl, Voss, Honadel, and Kooyenga.

Joe Sanfelippo State Assembly 
Assembly District 15 map 
GOP Assembly Candidates from District 13, 14, 15 Share Belief Wisconsin is Headed Right Direction 

ASSEMBLY - DISTRICT 24:   Daniel Knodl (Republican)
Dan Knodl, incumbent, currently serves as Assistant Majority Leader for the Republicans

Knodl for Assembly  "Dan Knodl is somebody who understands that Madison had a spending problem."
Dan Knodl Assembly District website
Assembly District 24 map includes areas in Germantown, Menomonee Falls, River Hills, Glendale, Brown Deer

Don't forget, Assembly District 98 and 99 residents also must vote for Farrow and Kapenga respectively  for Wisconsin Assembly

ASSEMBLY - DISTRICT 98:    Paul Farrow (Republican)

ASSEMBLY - DISTRICT 99:   Chris Kapenga (Republican)

That's it. The polls will be busy tomorrow;  don't wait until the last minute, especially if you need to register.

*Nickname courtesy of Mark Levin

2012 Blog Posts:

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