Feeling the noise in our cross-wired America

Ron Legro

Ron Legro
Whitefish Bay, Wisconsin, USA
October 12
A lapsed and reformed journalist, one-time for-profit soldier of fortune in the private sector, and political functionary, Ron is now re-learning the joys of hanging around while watching the microcosm unfold. But he's not above rising out of his enlightened stupor to call out perfidy and hypocrisy when he sees it. Ron was an award-winning reporter who worked at several newspapers, including the Milwaukee Sentinel and Wall Street Journal. His assignments took him aboard ice breakers and into the private lives of sexually miscreant clergy. In his years pounding the street with a notebook, he covered everything from tavern brawls to mob hits to political assassinations. He has contributed to various magazines, incuding Time. As editor-in-chief of a weekly public affairs journal, he led coverage of Wisconsin government down to every last legislative vote. Ron also pulled duty as a daily TV columnist and film critic, who spent most of his space examining the sociopolitical implications of mass media. He moved on to become a consultant to communities, nonprofit interest groups and government institutions on open networks. He's also worked for a power utility, several elected officials, a housing authority, and a university. He produced cable TV programming and once acted in a commercial, just to see what it was like. He and his dear wife enjoy beach combing on Lake Michigan near their home. They go bike hiking on city streets or trails. They like sailing and cross-country skiing, too, but never seem to find the time. They hang their laundry on clothes lines. That's them in the photo, regarding the ultra-modernist, bird-winged cathedral that is the Milwaukee Art Museum.

Ron Legro's Links

APRIL 15, 2013 10:27AM

George Will and the unpaid volunteer

Conservative columnist George Will thinks that volunteers by definition should not be paid. Because, apparently, that would be "Orwellian." In a generally erroneous column on a wider subject -- see  -- Will commented in passing on

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Editor’s Pick
FEBRUARY 25, 2013 3:16PM

GOP `disaster capitalism' is key to the sequester

When House Speaker John Boehner and his legion of absolutists complain that the Democratic-controlled Senate and President Obama are refusing to negotiate on a deal to end the impending super-sequester, our political system truly has wandered through an Alice in Wonderland mirror into the nonsen
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AUGUST 28, 2012 9:09PM


A moment of unwitting aposty took place today at the Republican National Convention when the party finished its blitzkrieg past reporters and Ron Paul's delegates to nominate Mitt Romney for president in record time.

The moment came when a giant video screen above the convention dais announced that R… Read full post »

It's one thing to be upset that the US Olympic team's uniforms this year were manufactured in China. It's another to imagine they're un-American because they include berets. Discussing the uniforms on a Fox News program yesterday, Dana Perino asked co-host Kimberly Guilfoyle: "A beret? Do you like t… Read full post »

King's book An increasingly frequent meme among Republicans in Wisconsin and elsewhere is that public employee unions erroneously refer to their collective bargaining "rights." No, shout the Repubs, collective bargaining is not a right, it's a privilege. And now, thanks to the current hegemony of wingn… Read full post »

On display once again in the wake of the Wisconsin Republican vote to destroy collective bargaining for public workers: the fetish of self-victimization that conservatives seem to possess in spades.

In the aftermath of their most successful power grab in history, Wisconsin Republicans are in some

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Editor’s Pick
MARCH 4, 2011 12:20PM

In Wisconsin, it's teachers vs. millionaires

monopoly moneyWhen Wisconsin Republicans and their enablers yell about the  need to cut the pay of average public employees to balance the state budget, they leave out some very inconvenient and illuminating facts. 

Let's consider a few of those facts in comparative fashion and see what's r… Read full post »
JANUARY 28, 2011 11:49AM


And now, more proof that, in American politics, cherry-picking information is still very much in season. That, and largely ignoring information while obsessing over process 

Whatever you believe about the financial meltdown, the report of the US Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission (FCIC) is the… Read full post »

This just popped into my head, always a dangerous thing:

For nearly two decades now, Kennesaw, Georgia, has had an ordinance essentially requiring heads of households to keep at least one firearm in their homes.

Now, if Republicans around the country are successful in convincing courts to overturn p… Read full post »

After the tragedy -- and, yes, terror -- of the Tucson shootings, in which six people were killed and Rep. Gabrielle Giffords was among the badly injured, Rep. Bob Brady (D-PA) says he will introduce a bill in the House criminalizing certain uses of threatening imagery against lawmakers and judges.&nRead full post »

DECEMBER 8, 2010 9:13PM

TAKING A LEAK: Wikileaks past

And now let us regard yet another case of failing to learn from history: The Wikileaks affair.

When military analyst Daniel Ellsberg back in 1969 leaked embarrassing government papers on the Vietnam War -- thereafter dubbed the Pentagon Papers -- the political establishment went nuts. President Nixon… Read full post »

DECEMBER 2, 2010 5:53PM


This political development, as reported in the mainstream press today, suggests a lot about the direction of our soon-to-be, same-old government in Washington:

> House Republicans temporarily blocked legislation to fund free and healthier school lunches for thousands more poor children. They usedRead full post »

NOVEMBER 10, 2010 3:25PM


The co-chairs of the president's deficit reduction commission -- known derisively in some progressive political circles as "the cat food commission" -- today issued tentative  recommendations. If you're not a multi-millionaire, you probably aren't going to like what you're being asked to eat.

T… Read full post »



The slogan, dusted off and recycled from previous Republican election cycles:

We're taking back our country

Extended by me for the sake of improving factual clarity, and to answer the question, "From whom?":

We're taking back our country ... from ourselves


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When the USSR was still, in its own mind, flying high back in the '70s, leader Leonid Brezhnev attempted to continue the Soviet custom of installing puppet Communist regimes in Third World countries, Eastern European buffer nations and the Baltic states. In the Soviet vernacular, a country that throu… Read full post »

NOVEMBER 1, 2010 11:37PM


House Speaker-in-waiting John Boehner (R-Ohio) this week joined other Republicans who have made it very clear going into Tuesday's midterm election that, should they gain control of one or both houses of Congress, they are not planning to compromise with Democrats on anything. If so, we can formally… Read full post »

OCTOBER 30, 2010 10:34AM


About Ron Johnson, the Wisconsin plastics manufacturer and millionaire who is spending tons of money to unseat progressive Russ Feingold in Wisconsin's US Senate race, much has been revealed, although not by Johnson himself.

But there's one exception, and it speaks volumes about who this guy is and… Read full post »

The Republican Party's political strategy manual is now down to, "Win by functioning, without exception, as the disloyal opposition."

By that standard, a good bill -- if enacted by Democrats -- is automatically a bad bill that must be repealed and/or replaced at once, even though a majority supported… Read full post »

OCTOBER 16, 2010 3:33PM


Q:   How many Republicans does it take to change a light bulb? 

A:   None to change the bulb, but several thousand to scream that the bulb doesn't need to be changed, along with the entire complement of House and Senate GOP minority pledging that if the Democrats go ahead and… Read full post »

Sunday, Feb. 28, CNN, discussing health care reform:

CANDY CROWLEY: Let me start with your ending position after the summit. And that is, start over again. Short of that, is there any way the president can reconfigure this bill that would get your support? 

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The right-wing swingers on the Supreme Court have just decided, on your behalf, that free speech is so important a goodly amount of it should be reserved for the highest bidder.
Destroying a century of legal precedent (no judicial activism there, huh?), the Roberts court voted 5-4 to let loose… Read full post »
DECEMBER 28, 2009 4:45PM


Republican Sen. Jim DeMint is one real piece of work. 

After the reported terrorist bombing attempt on the airliner landing in Detroit, it came to light in news stories this week that DeMint has placed a hold on President Obama's nominee to run the Transportation Security Administration. Obama's
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SEPTEMBER 7, 2009 9:59PM

A 30-HOUR WORK WEEK: It's already here

So let's make it official.

This deep and persistent recession has created huge unemployment across America. According to the federal government's "U-6" measure, which includes people who are unemployed, under-employed and who have given up looking altogether, the real unemployment rate in America is… Read full post »
AUGUST 21, 2009 10:24AM


Irony of the week: Right-wing American gun nuts apparently agree with left-wing Communist Mao Zedong that political power comes from the barrel of a gun. The unhappy aspect of this is that they're beginning to convince the law enforcement community at large that they are right.
A number of
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