How the maker of TurboTax fought free, simple tax filing - Propublica

How the Maker of TurboTax Fought Free, Simple Tax Filing

by Liz Day ProPublica, March 26, 2013, 5 a.m.

Update, April 14, 2016: In 2013, we detailed how Intuit has lobbied against allowing the government to estimate your taxes for you. So this week, we called Intuit and asked if they still oppose free, government-prepared returns. The answer: Yes. "Our legislative, our policy position on that hasn't changed," said spokeswoman Julie Miller. She called Intuit "a staunch opponent to government prepared tax returns." Meanwhile, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren proposed a bill yesterday to allow free government-prepped returns. Her office also released a report on the tax industry's opposition to simpler filing solutions. It cited the article below as well as another story we did on how a rabbi, civil rights activist, and others were misled into supporting Intuit's campaign.

Like the County Fair? Love 4H? Big Changes Coming to UW Extension

Kathleen Vinehout
 
Like the County Fair? Love 4H? Big Changes Coming to UW Extension
by
Senator Kathleen Vinehout
 
“We can’t do more with less,” UW Extension Regional Director Julie Keown-Bomar told people gathered at a recent Menomonie meeting. “We have to do less with less. We cannot be the same cooperative extension service that we used to be.”
 
The news hit hard. Downcast eyes, people with hands over their mouth, and long pauses after Julie asked the group for questions.
 
Julie explained how budget cuts forced UW Extension administrators to rethink their commitment to 100-years of county-based services. Wisconsin has a valuable partnership between the UW System and local counties.

Spending the Weekend Watching Game Film

Kathleen Vinehout
Spending the Weekend Watching Game Film
by
Senator Kathleen Vinehout
 
When the game is over the coaches go into the film room to see where the breakdown was in play execution. The best game plan in the world is not any good if the team does not execute it.
 
The “game film” for the State of Wisconsin was recently released. This is a good place to start for anyone evaluating the state’s performance.
 
Every year the nonpartisan Legislative Audit Bureau (LAB) conducts a review of state agencies. Known as the Single Audit, auditors examine Wisconsin’s financial accounting of federal dollars.
 
State computer systems are a bit like the football team’s offensive line. These systems do the grunt work so the star players can score.

Vote!

Ballot Box

It's that time again. Time to go out and vote. Time to go out and put yourself behind the candidates of your choice. Despite the legislature in Wisconsin doing everything it can to make voting difficult, it's still your greatest chance to make a difference to how your country, state, and local governments will be run.

This is a particularly important election. Everyone is caught up in the presidential election, and that's mighty serious, but keep in mind that the elections that affect us all most directly are the down-ballot votes. We have an opportunity to direct fundamental change, so don't be that person who didn't care enough to go out and vote.

In this election we have a lot of choices - who should be in the final election for president. Who shall be on the state Supreme Court for the next 10 years (this one is crucial - you can pick someone who has espoused vile views, who is in the pocket of special interests, and who has shown herself to be strongly partisan, or you can vote for JoAnne Kloppenburg, someone with judicial experience and temperament who wants to help clean up the mess in our Supreme Court). You can vote for (as a friend of mine once put it) Ron Kind-Of-A-Democrat or Myron Buchholz, a local political activist. 

Perhaps most importantly, all over the state there are elections for local officials of all types - school board members, county board members, city council members, and more. These are the small-town unsung heroes of our democracy - make sure you check out who is running in your area, and go vote. These offices make a difference in our lives every day. 

My Weekend at Bernie's

Or -- Feel the BRRRRRRRRN!

Nope, this isn't going to be a story about trying to pretend a dead guy is alive -- it's a story about going to see Bernie Sanders.

This morning I set off to Eau Claire from Uppitywis Central to go to the Bernie Sanders Town Meeting. I thought that those of you who have not had the experience might like to see what it's like. It was a day of frustration and exhileration. The drive over was terrifying. I've made the trip from Downsville to Eau Claire a disturbing number of times, but this was the worst trip I've ever taken. The very light snowfall overnight mixed with cold temperatures and one hell of a gusty wind storm to make for terrible driving conditions. The little country road to Eau Claire was slippery and it was often impossible to see anything due to the blowing snow across the prairies. My little car kept getting blown around, and a few times I thought I was going to head off into the ditch. People at the rally told me there were a lot of cars in the ditch on their trips. The trip took almost twice as long as normal, so I arrived somewhat later than I had planned.

I took the footbridge across the river and was greeted by - a gigantic line. I expected a pretty good line, but this was a little more than I expected:

The line went quite a way up the hill on the right - the arena is quite a way to the left.

Full Speech: Bernie Sanders Rally in Eau Claire, WI (4-2-16) Bernie Sanders Rally at Zorn Arena

And Hillary Clinton Too

Date: 

Saturday, April 2, 2016 - 1:15pm
Hillary Clinton

It's going to be a hectic Saturday in Eau Claire.  Bernie Sanders, Hillary Clinton, and Donald Trump will all appear in Eau Claire on the same day. Clinton will be at the Lismore Hotel. Doors open at 1:15 with the event starting at 2:45.  You could conceviably go see Sanders, then Clinton, then Trump. Forgive me, I'm not going to create a Trump event listing.

You can register for the Clinton event at https://www.hillaryclinton.com/events/view/WKSOEDTEA4UGYJHR/

Bernie Sanders Town Meeting in Eau Claire

Date: 

Saturday, April 2, 2016 - 10:00am

Just in - Bernie Sanders will hold a town meeting starting at 10 AM this Saturday at the Zorn Arena at UW-Eau Claire. Doors open at 10 AM - the actual event should occur around noon - Hillary Clinton will also be in town on Saturday, and rumor has it that Donald Trump is also coming and has reserved a building.

RSVP at https://go.berniesanders.com/page/event/detail/rally/44dhv

Bernie Sanders for a Town Meeting in Eau Claire, Wisconsin.

This event is free and open to the public. Tickets are not required, but RSVPs are strongly encouraged. Admission is first come, first served.

Which One Claims He's The New Democrat?

I was thinking of starting an informal survey. Hey - who knows maybe some paper or university polling apparatus will stumble upon this post and do one. I'd like to ask registered Democrats who professes to be of an elite coalition  in Congress that calls themselves "The New Democrats". My bets in the high 80% of respondents people would say Bernie Sanders. Well they are wrong. As a matter of fact they couldn't be wronger.

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