In the News

Militarized police may be in a town near you

Wednesday, April 23rd, 2014

SANTA FE, N.M. — A New Mexico Watchdog story about a 30-second commercial for the police department in Hobbs has drawn national attention, with a well-known author and civil libertarian criticizing the ad running on television stations across the state emphasizing aggressive, military-style policing.

But Radley Balko points out the Hobbs video isn’t unique. In fact, the author of “Rise of the Warrior Cop: The Militarization of America’s Police Forces,” gives examples of police departments across the country who showcase recruiting videos that highlight the ”shoot ‘em up” aspects of the job.

Read the entire article here.

Milwaukee living wage to cost taxpayers $218,000 for new government jobs

Wednesday, April 23rd, 2014

The recently passed “living wage” in Milwaukee County already could be spurring job growth — in the public sector.

Taxpayers are being asked to spend nearly $218,000 a year to hire three new compliance officers to oversee the county’s union-influenced living-wage law.

The county’s Audit Services Division on Thursday will present a resolution on the potential staffing increase to the Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors.

The proposal contradicts repeated claims by Supervisor David Bowen that the $11.32-an-hour living wage he authored with Service Employee International Union-affiliated officials would not cost taxpayers because businesses contracting with the county would absorb the added expenses.

Read the entire article here.

Experts: Civilians not ready for EMP-caused blackout

Monday, April 21st, 2014

Josh peterson drudge hit

Experts: Civilians not ready for EMP-caused blackout

The catastrophic effects of an electromagnetic pulse-caused blackout could be preventable, but experts warn the civilian world is still not ready.

Peter Vincent Pry, executive director of the Task Force on National and Homeland Security and director of the U.S. Nuclear Strategy Forum, both congressional advisory boards, said the technology to avoid disaster from electromagnetic pulses exists, and upgrading the nation’s electrical grid is financially viable.

“The problem is not the technology,” Pry said. “We know how to protect against it. It’s not the money, it doesn’t cost that much. The problem is the politics. It always seems to be the politics that gets in the way.”

Read the entire article here.

Watchdog.org reporter Kathryn Watson appears on NRA News

Thursday, April 17th, 2014

Katie on NRA news

Kathryn Watson spoke with NRA News about the use of automatic license plate readers in Virginia. You can see her entire interview here. And be sure to read Kathryn’s entire story here.

Chinese Ask: Where’s The Beef … And Visas?

Tuesday, April 15th, 2014

A bankrupt meatpacking plant in South Dakota has left Chinese investors without promised visas, and another black eye for America’s EB-5 immigration program.

Records obtained by the Rapid City Journal show that at least 50 Chinese nationals invested $500,000 each in the Northern Beef Packers plant.

“Most of those investors, however, have not gotten their visas, and they appear unlikely to get back their investments,” the newspaper reported.

Read the entire story here.

Watchdog.org’s Virginia Bureau Makes Drudge Report!

Tuesday, April 15th, 2014

VA Drudge report

Police use automated license plate reader to track drivers. Katie Watson, a reporter with Watchdog.org’s Virginia Bureau found police captured 16 pictures of her car — mostly at night — and recorded her license plate eight times on five dates — from October 2013 to as recently as April 1. You can read her entire story here.

MN union drive moves ahead in shadow of Supreme Court case

Monday, April 7th, 2014

ST. PAUL, Minn. — The future of public employee labor unions for state-paid personal care attendants remains up in the air as the U.S. Supreme Court weighs an Illinois case, but you’d never know it by the organizing drive under way to from a sister union in Minnesota.

The Service Employees International Union claims the campaign to unionize about 16,000 attendants who care for disabled and elderly individuals at home constitutes the biggest union election in Minnesota history.

Read the entire story here.

NJ State trooper caught shoplifting from Pa. Cabela’s store is fined $150

Monday, April 7th, 2014

A New Jersey State trooper who worked on Gov. Chris Christie’s security detail has been fined for shopifting gun supplies from an outdoor recreation store in Pennsylvania,according to a report on NJWatchdog.org.

William Carvounis will have to pay a $150 penalty in addition to court costs, the report said. The trooper must also pay $100 to attend a “STOPLIFT” rehabilitation class and is banned from returning to any Cabela’s store, Watchdog reported.

Read the entire story here.

FoxNews.com: No connection between school spending, student outcomes

Monday, April 7th, 2014

For decades, it’s probably the most troublesome question facing education: Why are results for U.S. public school students so mediocre, despite the billions of taxpayer dollars spent?

Andrew Coulson thinks he’s got the answer: Because there is no discernible correlation between spending and outcomes.

“The takeaway from this study is that what we’ve done over the past 40 years hasn’t worked,” said Coulson, director of the Center For Educational Freedom at the CATO Institute. “The average performance change nationwide has declined 3 percent in mathematical and verbal skills. Moreover, there’s been no relationship, effectively, between spending and academic outcomes.”

Read the entire story here.

Wisconsin Reporter mentioned in Minnesota Law Review

Friday, April 4th, 2014

Ryan ekvallRyan Ekvall, reporter with the Wisconsin Reporter was mentioned in the  footnotes of a law professor’s article in the Minnesota Law Review.

You can read the entire paper here.  And be sure to check out Ryan’s original story here.