If it’s a day of the week ending in “y” then it’s certainly time for a press release from Milwaukee Alderman Bob Donovan. Yesterday’s press release from Ald. Donovan focused on what he sees as a need to combat panhandling in the City of Milwaukee by criminalizing poverty.

Panhandling in the public right-of-way is now a significant problem across the City of Milwaukee, and Alderman Bob Donovan will address that topic and concerns about the decline in public safety across the city during a news conference at 1:30 p.m. TODAY (Thursday, March 26, 2015) at the northeast corner of S. 35th St. and W. National Ave.

Alderman Donovan, who will be joined by concerned residents and business owners at today’s news conference, said he is introducing a proposed city ordinance that would ban panhandling in the public right-of-way along city streets and at intersections.

Bob Donovan was first elected to serve as the Alderman in Milwaukee’s 8th district in 2000, and in the 15 years since he was elected what has he done to combat poverty in his district? If Bob Donovan were so concerned about panhandling in his district, wouldn’t he have done something to combat poverty? After all, I don’t know many folks who panhandle because they want to; it’s typically done more out of necessity.

While Bob Donovan wants to bluster about panhandling, the irrefutable fact is that his decade and a half in office has been marked by more bluster than accomplishment. That’s not a record that justifies reelection in his district, much less a promotion to Mayor of Milwaukee.

Tagged with:

12 Responses to Alderman Bob Donovan seeks to criminalize being poor

  1. John Casper says:

    Zach, thanks.

    Long past time for a federal job guarantee.

    “…The government could serve as the “employer of last resort” under a job guarantee program modeled on the WPA (the Works Progress Administration, in existence from 1935 to 1943 after being renamed the Work Projects Administration in 1939) and the CCC (Civilian Conservation Corps, 1933-1942). The program would offer a job to any American who was ready and willing to work at the federal minimum wage, plus legislated benefits. No time limits. No means testing. No minimum education or skill requirements. …”


  2. John Casper says:

    Someone should tell Ald. Donovan about Islam’s “Zakat.”

    “1/4 of the world’s people already subject to large annual wealth tax to tackle poverty. Has anyone told Piketty?”


  3. Rita Wittwer says:

    The world is so black and white for people like Mr. Donovan. I mean that both literally and figuratively. Life, however isn’t quite that simple. Communities of poverty offer little or nothing to uplift one’s life. Add to that the excessive rates of incarceration, the major difficulty in getting employment with a record, and the high rate of recidivism, and you are left with what you started with. In the meantime, some of our representatives cut programs that help people find employment, cut education, give more money to those who are already rich, and expect the middle income earners to bear the burden of supporting the economy. This is a drama of disaster and its being played out in Wisconsin, other states, and DC by Republicans who sold their party to the Koch brothers. The ultimate goal being to give more money to the wealthy/corporations, privatize our public programs, deregulate everything except religious/moral issues, and create an oligarchy. They are well on their way to doing just that. By the time they are done, other than the wealthy benefactors, we will all be panhandling and there won’t be enough prisons to hold us all.

  4. The answer to this problem is to further facilitate the urban/rural connection among poor people. Urban panhandlers need to be bused out into rural Wisconsin where the trailer parks are absolutely bursting with welfare queens living high off the hog, feasting on Ribeye steaks, driving their all wheel drive SUV’s to the Walmart and chatting endlessly on their 4G cell phones. This will get the beggars off of Milwaukee’s streets and give the welfare queens something to do beyond cooking up their next scheme of how to pull the wool over their public assistance caseworker’s eyes. But we don’t want anyone to game the system so we need to piss test urban panhandlers before they get on the bus, and then again when they get off the bus, because some of those rural trailer parkers are known druggies. Just ask any republican.

    So, there’s plenty to go around amongst the poor if they’ll just show some solidarity and share the bounty. Remember what Mitt Romney said: ” we need an economy that works for more than just the wealthy and the poor ” or something like that. Damn straight, Mitt. It’s high time one segment of the poor quit hoarding all the wealth. I hope Alderman Donovan will unveil his ” Bus the Piss Tested Urban Homeless into Rural Wisconsin ” plan today and get this damn ball, or bus, rolling!

  5. EmmaR says:

    This might be driven more by fear of Milwaukee losing more families and businesses to the suburbs than straight-up contempt for the poor. Still deeply wrong, though.

  6. John Harper says:

    Yes it is Bob Donovan’s fault that a city which has been under the rule of Democrats for a century is rife with poverty…

    Do you guys even think when you write this stuff.

    • John Casper says:

      jharp, wrong as usual.

      “How Wall Street Used Swaps to Get Rich at the Expense of Cities”

      “…One of the main problems arises from the use of interest rate swaps to create synthetic fixed rate municipal bonds. You’ll get great rates, cities were told, and these interest rate swaps will protect you against interest rate hikes. Risks were downplayed, if they were mentioned at all. The chief of these is the risk of downgrades in credit rating. In those cases, the swap could be cancelled, inflicting massive termination penalties on the city. Other risks include the inability to refinance into a lower interest rate, because the swap runs for a very long term, and payments would eat up any gains. Bhatti says the City of Oakland refinanced one of its bonds, and continues to pay for the swap; he says it’s “like paying for insurance on a car that was sold years ago”.

      Another trap was the pension obligation bond. The idea is to borrow the money needed to make up a shortfall in pension payments, with the idea that the pension plan would invest the funds at a higher rate of return than the bond after expenses.

      A third trap was Auction Rate Securities. These are short-term securities that have to roll over every month or two. If an investor in ARS wants out, but the city can’t roll the ARS over, the city is stuck with huge interest rate bills. This happened to the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which saw interest rates jump from 4.3% to 20% in one week.

      The Capital Appreciation Bond works just like a negative amortization home loan. The city doesn’t pay interest or principal for a few years, then starts paying the debt off, with interest on interest. Chicago and the Chicago Public Schools have a bunch of these, with lifetime interest rates ranging from 141% to 459%….”


      • John Harper says:

        You blather on about nonsense and miss the point. Bob Donovan is not the cause of poverty in the city of milwaukee.

        • John Casper says:

          jharp, since you don’t get interest rate swaps, we’ll see how you do with scripture.

          Exodus 22:25 “If you lend money to any of my people with you who is poor, you shall not be like a moneylender to him, and you shall not exact interest from him.”

  7. Conslayer says:

    Donavan is a RWNJ that gets re-elected by the fading, yet vocal minority of inbred white bigots that haven’t yet succumbed to their chromosome damaged brains. He appeals because he promises punishment for those “undeserving” of freedom. I find glee in knowing the scum that infest his district will never thrive. Stupid as they are.

  8. John Harper says:

    You got me John. Can’t argue with the bible. Unless you are an atheist

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Set your Twitter account name in your settings to use the TwitterBar Section.