HELLO FROM EAU CLAIRE, WISCONSIN - merchants slogan: "We don't have it but we can get it for you."

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Small Biz Owner In Walker Ad Actually a Billionaire Outsourcer, Member of China Business Council

Here at 4896 Hobbs Road, we have begun the arduous and expensive task of sealing up the house and adding insulation everywhere to begin to try to get a handle on rising energy costs. As we live in a modified A-frame, much of the problem is the condition of the present roof and how it originally was insulated.

Although our present shingles could probably suffice for two or three more years, we are considering the newest alternative, steel roofing with a lot of good insulation installed first.

We are trying to outrun the ever rising expense of heating our living space!


I received the following e mail today:

Dear Lawrence,

I wish that today I could send you a cheerful message with good news, wish you a wonderful holiday season and reflect on the incredible work we’ve done in the past year.

But we can’t rest and recharge: Six million unemployed workers are counting on us to keep on fighting for them, and we won’t let them down.

Please call Speaker Boehner at 202-225-0600. Tell the person who picks up the phone: “Speaker Boehner should be ashamed of himself. He needs to get his House in order, stop the partisan games and extend unemployment aid immediately.”

The two things House Republicans seem to be most passionate about are protecting millionaires from having to pay taxes and cutting unemployment benefits for jobless workers.

All 229 House members who voted yesterday to cut off unemployment benefits were Republicans. They should be ashamed of themselves. Once again they’ve blocked survival aid for men and women who want to work but can’t find jobs in this brutal economy. If House Republicans continue to block action, nearly 2 million people will lose unemployment benefits in January alone. How can they sit back and enjoy the holidays?

Please pick up the phone and call Speaker Boehner at 202-225-0600. Tell him to extend unemployment aid immediately.

Thank you for being a voice for jobless workers, and for all the work you do.

In Solidarity,

Richard L. Trumka
President, AFL-CIO

P.S. 89 Senators—Democrats and Republicans—voted to extend unemployment this weekend. House Republicans have a decision to make. They can continue standing with the wealthiest one percent by taking directions from the most extreme of the Tea Partiers, or they can come to their senses and start standing up for working people and paying attention to the jobs crisis.

Please call John Boehner and ask him: What’s wrong with Tea Party Republicans in the House—and why can’t they get anything done for working families? His number is 202-225-0600.


I made the call this morning - and let me tell you, it felt REALLY good to say it into Boehner's phone!

Closer to home, I received the following e mail from Mike Tate:

Dear Lawrence,

A new report shows that last month, Scott Walker ranked #1 in the country in job losses thanks to his extreme, divisive agenda that has failed to produce jobs for Wisconsin families.

But rather than take responsibility for costing 34,900 Wisconsin workers their jobs in the last five months, Scott Walker and his administration have been blaming others, blaming you and even blaming the jobs data itself.

Scott Walker thinks that if he changes the subject or blames others for his failures, he'll be able to save his own job while more Wisconsin families struggle to make ends meet.

Enough is enough. It's time to hold Scott Walker accountable for making working, middle-class families suffer while his super-rich campaign donors receive billions more in corporate welfare and tax giveaways.

Can you chip in with a donation of $5 to help us expose how Scott Walker's extreme policies are directly responsible for the more than 34,900 pink slips Wisconsin workers have received in the last five months?


Unlike Scott Walker, numbers don't lie. The numbers show that since Scott Walker signed his devastating budget into law in June, our state has been hemorrhaging jobs each and every month. In fact, Scott Walker's regressive policies have harmed our state to such a degree that another report shows that Wisconsin has the worst economic indicators of any state in the entire country.

It's not working, but Scott Walker is too arrogant to admit that he has failed. We must act now and recall Scott Walker to get Wisconsin's economy moving again.

Please donate $5 right now so we can hold Scott Walker accountable for all the harm he has done to our state's economy and our middle class.


With your help, we'll recall Scott Walker and elect a new governor that the people of Wisconsin can believe in to take job creation seriously.

Thank you for your support,

Mike Tate
Chair, Democratic Party of Wisconsin

Unfortunately, I am behind on bills. But I pulled out my credit card and sent in $10 myself. I hope if you read this that you will do the same!

I am sure you have seen some of King Walker's bullshit television ads. The one that really got me was about how he has promoted small business - In one ad, he taps "small businessman" Chris Rebholz.

As progressive Wisconsinites approach the necessary number of signatures to force a recall election of Governor Scott Walker, the man known best for union-busting and prank phone call gumpsmanship is making his case for Wisconsin being a better business environment since he took office. It is a tough case to make considering that Wisconsin has led the nation in job losses for five consecutive months. Despite this absolute truth, Walker has been releasing ads touting his accomplishments and abilities.

This ad shows a "small business" owner talking about how Scott Walker is a friend to the small businessman. But as popular Wisconsin blog UppityWis notes, “Chris” is Chris Rebholz, owner of TriStar Products, a company specializing in outsourcing jobs to China. TriStar Products makes all of the useless items you see on TV infomercials...and they make them in China. In fact, Rebholz likes working with China so much that he is on the China Business Council. From UppityWis:

...the reality is that Wisconsin is hemorrhaging manufacturing jobs almost exclusively to China. And when customers buy from a TV ad or online, it also requires fewer jobs to get that product to the customer because there is no store and the jobs that go with a store.
In other words, if you were going to set up a business model with the fewest American jobs possible, it would be Chris Rebholz's business model. That's the guy... that Scott Walker chose to promote his job creation efforts.

Rebholz was able to set up such a good system for importing Chinese trinkets, selling them on TV or online, and then mailing them out to people that he's gone to other businesses and offered up his expertise of getting a product, made cheap in China, and to the hands of the American consumer with the fewest American jobs possible.

Americans are growing tired of the "big business" megalomania that has come to represent the Right. Walker is a product of this mindset, someone so engulfed in ideology that it is difficult to tell if he even thinks he is lying anymore.

And sure, in these ads Walker is telling a special version of the truth. If you are the kind of company that makes cheap products in China and has them sent here to sell wholesale then yes, Governor Walker’s economic policies may work for you. But Wisconsin's firefighters, police officers and public employees aren’t willing to take anymore bullets for the likes of Chris Rebholz.

Biztimes.com states the obvious, that having someone like Rebholz tout your economic policy might be foolish.

Yes, you heard that right folks-- Walker's job-promotin' carny barker helps companies with their "downsizing."
Here's the kicker, though: Rebholz is also a member of the "China Business Council" which features on their logo a Chinese flag placed in front and almost completely covering-up the American flag below it.

As the name suggest, the Chinese Business Council helps facilitate the manufacturing of products in China and then selling them in the United States.

The problem with being a 1% flunky is that you only gain support from the 1%, leaving 99% of Wisconsinites wondering if their Governor has their best interests in mind. Having a billionaire who has made his money outsourcing jobs to China does little to strengthen Walker's case. But hey, Walker and Rebholz are a match made in Heaven. After all, Rebholz is familiar with recalls, too. In 2007 his Hulk Hogan Ultimate Grill was recalled for being a fire hazard.


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