Active McFarland: Exercising Democracy

Joe Parisi to speak to McFarland Village Board, Sept. 25, 7:00 pm

Dane County Executive Joe Parisi will be speaking at the Sept. 25 meeting of the McFarland Village Board to update us on the County’s efforts to clean the Yahara Chain of Lakes. 

The meeting, which takes place at the McFarland Municipal Center, 5915 Milwaukee St., begins at 7:00 p.m. and is open to the public. Joe will present his cleanup plan and answer any questions.

In his 2017 Dane County budget, Joe included $12 million over four years to clean up 33 miles of streams that feed phosphorus into the lakes daily. This work will remove 870,000 pounds of phosphorus, the chief culprit responsible for algae growth, from area waters.

Past research has revealed that if the accrued sludge that sits at the bottom of these streams is not removed, it will take 99 years to see a 50% reduction in phosphorus that finds its way into the lakes. Even more concerning, the roadmap to cleaning our lakes completed a couple of years ago suggests it will cost $78 million to achieve that 50% reduction.

Joe will go into more detail on his plans to remove this legacy phosphorous. This presentation will be a real eye-opener. What sits in the bottom of our streams is nearly 125 years old and is a much greater contributor to the health of our lakes than earlier thought.

We hope many area residents will be able to attend this informative and important presentation.

Public Hearing on Immigrant rights, Sept. 27

Voces de la Frontera, Wisconsin Faith Voices for Justice, We Are Many-United Against Hate, and the Coalition of Wisconsin Aging Groups invite you to attend an important public hearing on Wed. Sept. 27 at 10:30 am at the State Capitol, Room 411 South in Madison.

The hearing will feature testimony from dairy farmers, dairy workers, and others about the negative consequences that passing of the anti-immigrant bill AB190/SB275 would have on the dairy industry. Also, the need for a state bill to restore driver card access to immigrants to promote public safety will be highlighted. The hearing will continue with testimony open to the public until 3:30 pm.

art shegonee honoroed at indian summer festival

Congratulations to Active McFarland member and Native-American activist and dancer Art Shegonee, who was honored at Indian Summer Festival on Sept. 8-10 by being named the official "Native American Ambassador" to the festival.

Art is one of several Native Americans who is featured in the film "Walk a Mile in Their Shoes." A free showing of this film will take place on Sept. 27 at 7:00 pm at the Barrymore Theater, 2090 Atwood Ave. in Madison.

Patrick Miles Sponsors Dane County Renewable Energy Resolution

A renewable energy resolution sponsored by Dane County Supervisor and Active McFarland member Patrick Miles was approved by the County Board on July 13. The resolution aims to make all the power that runs Dane County government reliant on renewable energy sources by 2035.

Congratulations to Patrick for taking the leadership role on this important issue. Here is a link to an article written by Patrick that appeared in the Wisconsin State Journal.

Our Wisconsin Revolution

Our Wisconsin Revolution is an independent, statewide, membership-driven, democratic-populist political organization that aims to take Wisconsin government back from corporate elites and make it of, by, and for the people.

For more information about OWR and a chapter near you, click here: Our Wisconsin Revolution

The Indivisible Guide

Indivisible: A Practical Guide for Resisting the Trump Agenda was developed by former Congressional staffers to share best practices for making Congress listen.

For more information about Indivisible, click here: Indivisible

For information about the Madison branch, click here: Indivisible Madison

Phone Numbers for Wisconsin’s Congressional Representatives

Call your members of Congress and let them know what you think about proposed federal legislation. Your phone calls matter.


District 1:  Paul Ryan (R), 202-225-3031
District 2:  Mark Pocan (D), 202-225-2906
District 3:  Ron Kind (D), 202-225-5506
District 4:  Gwen Moore (D), 202-225-4572
District 5:  James Sensenbrenner (R), 202-225-5101
District 6:  Glenn Grothman (R), 202-225-2476
District 7:  Sean Duffy (R), 202-225-3365
District 8:  Mike Gallagher (R), 202-225-5665


Tammy Baldwin (D), 202-224-5653
Ron Johnson (R), 202-224-5323

Contact Information for State, County, and Village Representatives

State Senate, District 3

Mark Miller, 266-9170,

Assembly, District 47

Jimmy Anderson, 266-8570,

Dane County Executive

Joe Parisi, 266-4114,

Dane County Board of Supervisors, District 3

Patrick Miles, 886-9167,

Village of McFarland

Brad Czebotar, Village President, 838-9458,
Jerry Adrian, Trustee, 838-9868,
Stephanie Brassington, Trustee,
Carolyn Clow, Trustee,
Dan Kolk, Trustee, 838-7716,
Mary Pat Lytle, Trustee, 556-3991,
Shaun O'Hearn, Trustee,

Listen to Your Grandmothers

Check out the Raging Grannies' new book, Listen to Your Grandmothers, which includes essays by Active McFarland member Sheila Plotkin and a host of other grannies: Raging Grannies Sing for Peace, Social Justice, Public Education, and Environmental Protection

A Clarion Call for Peace, Hope, and Inclusion

Active McFarland members Dawn and Art Shegonee, founders of the Call for Peace Drum & Dance Company, invite you to view this 4-minute video, a clarion call for peace, hope, and inclusion: “Dancing the Dream: A New Hope for Humanity.”

For more information about Call for Peace, click here: Call for Peace Drum & Dance Company

Dawn and Art also invite you to check out their “A New People” website, “an educational resource of hope and discovery” for people involved in “transformative movements” of social, cultural, and political change: A New People

From Sheila Plotkin --- Donald Trump a catalyst for an avalanche of hate

February 7, 2017, The Cap Times

Dear Editor:

One step on a slippery slope dislodges a small cascade of stones and mud. The minority president banned some Muslims from entering the country. A mosque in Texas was set ablaze and burned to the ground. His statement on Holocaust Remembrance Day did not mention Jews. More than 20 Jewish centers across the country received bomb threats during the past week, including in Whitefish Bay, Wisconsin. All were evacuated. The FBI has been called in.

The intellectual responsibility for these terrorist acts belongs to the minority president and his closest advisers. They have given perpetrators tacit permission to act. Criminals now have the unofficial blessing of those in power. Defensive Republican members of Congress wrap themselves in the flag or remain silent. Republicans are now accomplices in domestic terrorism. The minority president has created a scenario wherein hate crimes are patriotic. This is no longer a small cascade. It is an avalanche.

Sheila Plotkin

From Robert Reich --- Signs of Authoritarianism

January 29, 2017: Extraordinary times call for extraordinary actions from ordinary people.

As tyrants take control of democracies, they typically:

1. Exaggerate their mandate to govern -- claiming, for example, that they won an election by a landslide even after losing the  popular vote.
2. Repeatedly claim massive voter fraud in the absence of any evidence, in order to restrict voting in subsequent elections.
3. Call anyone who opposes them "enemies."
4. Turn the public against journalists or media outlets that criticize them, calling them "deceitful" and "scum."
5. Hold few press conferences, preferring to communicate with the public directly through mass rallies and unfiltered statements.
6. Tell the public big lies, causing them to doubt the truth and to believe fictions that support the tyrants' goals.
7. Blame economic stresses on immigrants or racial or religious minorities, and foment public bias and even violence against them.
8. Attribute acts of domestic violence to "enemies within," and use such events as excuses to beef up internal security and limit civil liberties.
9. Threaten mass deportations, registries of a religious minority, and the banning of refugees with particular religious beliefs.
10. Seek to eliminate or reduce the influence of competing centers of power, such as labor unions and opposition parties.
11. Appoint family members to high positions of authority and power.
12. Surround themselves with their own personal security force rather than a security detail accountable to the public.
13. Put generals into top civilian posts.
14. Make personal alliances with foreign dictators.
15. Draw no distinction between personal property and public property, profiteering from their public office.These warning signs should be of concern to everyone, regardless of political party. In fact, historically, conservatives have been especially vigilant against potential threats to our constitutional rights.All Americans must join together to protect American democracy against tyranny.

Consider yourself warned.

Robert Reich