Scott Walker, go to Ferguson!

But first, what a great post-Labor Day weekend! Packers start out the season with James Jones and a rare opening day win. Badgers right the ship in cool and sunny Madison.

Great meet-up motorcycle ride Saturday through the southern Kettle Moraine led by former circuit judge Mark Frankel. On the way, we encountered a top notch classic car show on the grounds of the Cambridge Fire Department. Hot-rodded Model A Fords, a low-slung 1950 Merc, and a lemon meringue-yellow ’57 Chev were my favorites. The most fun car was the whimsical Crosley, with dragon pipes, a State Journal delivery box for air intake, and a ceramic water faucet for a driver’s door handle.

It wasn’t a planned stop but a good motorcycle ride is about the journey, not the destination.

The day before, I golfed the Tommy G. Thompson Charity Open at Door Creek outside of Cottage Grove. Completing my foursome were radio host Mitch Henck and former Dane County Board colleagues Jim Mohrbacher, now of Okauchee Lake, and Sam Simon of Middleton. Pro Football Hall of Famer Dave Robinson accompanied Tommy to greet each foursome on the course. Robinson let me handle his Hall of Fame ring; it is a heavy hunk of gold.

Of course, Friday was the 14th anniversary of 9/11. Tommy was secretary of Health and Human Services in Washington. He recounted how he put the only plane in the air (outside the military) to deliver medical supplies to New York and walked the ash-covered streets of NYC less than 48 hours later. Robinson recounted how, as the first black player to be the No. 1 pick of the Packers, Coach Vince Lombardi integrated Green Bay “in 45 minutes.”

Most local taverns would not serve African Americans. Lombardi called the owners into his office, said he respected their prerogatives and announced that he would exercise his own: all the Packers or none would visit their taverns. Robinson said he took up after-school sports at the insistence of his father, who died soon afterwards, so that his mother would know where he was at all times. Again, a strong father figure makes a difference in a young life.

The football great — a resident of his native New Jersey — said he loved Tommy T. Indeed, my mentor attracts a diverse group. Talked to former ambassador and Sun Prairie boy Tom Loftus, my old boss Revenue Secretary Rick Chandler, former state Rep. Joe Tregoning, Doug Moe and his bride, former TV newsgal Janean Yasiri, Dane County Towns president Jerry Derr, and brother Mike-boy — who played five extra holes to settle a bet. Saw former State Sens. Brian Rude, Tim Cullen, Dale Schultz, and former Madison mayor Joel Skornicka.

Tommy’s golf event raises money for health scholarships to Madison College students.



Right tactic (going bold), wrong issue 

Doesn’t it seem a little desperate? Scott Walker is declaring war on organized labor at the national level. I guess if it worked for him in Wisconsin … But the National Labor Relations Board is not what is wrong with America. The first candidate who promises to end the shooting war in the inner-city battlefields of Milwaukee, Chicago, St. Louis, New Orleans, and Baltimore deserves the presidency.

Running in 1952 to succeed Truman, Eisenhower famously said he would go to Korea. Unintimidated, Scott Walker should say he will go to Ferguson.

If you don’t think the Black Lives Matter’s war on police is a contributing cause then please explain why violent crime is surging in America’s cities. Homicides are up 76% in Milwaukee, 60% in St. Louis, 56% in Baltimore, 47% in Minneapolis, and 36% in Houston, which buried deputy Darren Goforth, assassinated as he fueled his squad car.

“There are signs that the legal order itself is breaking down in urban areas,” writes Heather MacDonald of the Manhattan Institute. (Her essay here.)

Including Madison, where neighborhood beat cop Caleb Johnson was physically attacked and threatened with death while trying to break up one of the periodic internecine riots that break out in the Betty’s Lane/Hammersley Road neighborhood. Quick, more community pot luck dinners. Dig more community gardens. Convert more empty storefronts into neighborhood centers. Mouth more guilty white platitudes.

We bring you this announcement from the City of Madison:

Aldermen Matt Phair and Barbara McKinney, with the support of the Mayor’s Office, Neighborhood Resource Teams, neighborhood residents and other community stakeholders, will be organizing a community conversation(s) to address and respond to this incident and other areas of mistrust by community members towards police and other civic leaders.

The conversation, or series of conversations, will be based on principles of restorative justice — inclusively working with those involved in the incident and the broader community to ensure accountability, repair harm, and promote community healing. Phair and McKinney are working with outside facilitators and community stakeholders to set up a conversation format and guidelines as well as find an appropriate location. The main priority of the event will be to provide an environment in which everyone (residents, police, elected official, etc.) feels safe to openly express themselves in a manner that is respectful and genuine.

We will see how respectful and genuine the Emerald City will be to allow Your Humble Squire to openly express himself. Date and place for this “conversation, or series of conversations,” has not been determined.

As Ms. MacDonald writes, “since black Americans are disproportionately the victims of crime, just as blacks are disproportionately its perpetrators, effective policing was heaviest in minority neighborhoods. The cops were there because they believe black lives matter.”

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• Advocating the defeat of State Rep. Robin Vos, as the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel did Sunday, the champion of the John Doe 2 speech police “is going well beyond any conservative groups’ issue advertising,” writes Jim Wigderson at RightWisconsin. “The corporation is using its resources to expressly advocate for the defeat of an elected official … I’m betting the corporate in-kind contribution to the Democratic Party is unreported.”

• Struggling young writer Christian Schneider: “GOP in 2012: ‘We lost because we nominated a moderate, out-of-touch, corporate, rich guy flip-flopper.’ GOP in 2015: ‘Trump for President.’ ”

• “Scott Walker reverses the position he took on taking positions” — the Puffington Host.

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