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Issue of the Week: Chill Out

Plus Winners and Jerks of the Week

Jun. 4, 2008
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The launch of the city’s festival season started with a bang at RiverSplash!— unfortunately. What’s typically a fun night out turned into a disorderly scene in which a minority of drunken jerks put the safety of the majority at risk.

Mayor Tom Barrett, Alderman Bob Bauman and Milwaukee Police Chief Edward Flynn are considering their options for next year, and we can only wonder how the rest of this summer’s ethnic, neighborhood and street festivals will be affected. It would be a shame if the bad press generated by just a few irresponsible yahoos deterred festival-goers from enjoying everything this great city has to offer. So before politicians and lawmakers come up with a heavy-handed solution that could take all of the fun out of this summer, here’s an easy fix: Chill out! Just because you can spend an entire day drinking outdoors doesn’t mean you have to. If you’re old enough to buy a drink, you’re old enough to know that you have limits.


Event of the Week:
Isaac Saney Talk and Film

Saney, author of Cuba: A Revolution in Motion, will discuss Cuban current events on Thursday, June 5, at UW-Milwaukee’s Curtin Hall, Room 175, at 7 p.m. On Friday, June 6, Saney will sign books at 5:30 p.m. and show Sisters’ and Brothers’ Keeper, 45-minute documentary on Cuba’s role in defeating apartheid in South Africa, at 6 p.m. at the Milwaukee Enterprise Center (2821 N. Fourth St.). For more information, go to www.wicuba.org.


Winners of the Week:
The Milwaukee Public Museum

If you offer world-class exhibits, they will come. The Milwaukee Public Museum is in the midst of a stunning—and positive— reversal of fortune. The just-completed four-month-long exhibit “Body Worlds” attracted 338,500 visitors, almost doubling the attendance figures of 2004’s “Quest for Immortality: Treasures of Ancient Egypt” and 2006’s Vatican exhibit.

“Body Worlds” is estimated to have netted the museum a much-needed $2 million.

Jerks of the Week:
Touchpoint Health Plan Inc.

Appleton-based insurer Touchpoint Health Plan twice denied covering cancer treatments for Parker Summers, who at the age of 3 had a tumor the size of a golf ball removed from his brain. Parker’s doctor recommended treating his rare cancer with chemotherapy and stem-cell rescue, but Touchpoint called the treatment “experimental” refused to cover it. Parker’s parents went ahead with it anyway—and sued Touchpoint. Last week, the Supreme Court ruled that Touchpoint was wrong to deny Parker coverage for his cancer treatment—and must reimburse his parents for it.


Help Champps (1240 S. Moorland Road, Brookfield) restock the Food Pantry of Waukesha County by bringing in three nonperishable items through June 16. Champps will take $2 off your meal that day, plus another $5 off a $25 order during your next visit.

Blog of the Week
Blogging Blue (bloggingblue.com)

Paul Ryan’s Dirty Little Secret: “While Rep. Ryan has tried really hard to portray himself as a so-called fiscal conservative, citing his opposition to pork-barrel spending as proof of that fact, he’s neglected to own up to his own vote in favor of the ultimate pork-barrel spending, that being the war in Iraq. Time and time again Congressman Ryan has voted to spend hundreds of billions of dollars—American taxpayers’ dollars—to fund the war in Iraq. If Congressman Ryan [is] so concerned about wasteful spending, perhaps he should start voting against writing virtually blank checks to support our war in Iraq.”

(To read more local blogs, go to blognetwork.expressmilwaukee.com)

“Over that summer of 2002, top Bush aides had outlined a strategy for carefully orchestrating the coming campaign to aggressively sell the war. … In the permanent campaign era, it was all about manipulating sources of public opinion to the president’s advantage.” —former White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan

Behind the Barbed Wire Fence, by Inthava (Indy) Phakeovilay


"This picture was taken around 7 p.m. on May 1, 2008, as the sun was about to go down. When I look at the photo I can't help but think about the less fortunate individuals who are locked up somewhere against their will without having the privilege and the freedom to enjoy all the wonderful things Mother Nature has to offer."

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