Wisconsinites sue over rail expansion for crude oil

Written by Lisa Neff,
Staff writer
Thursday, 26 March 2015 12:40

A train carrying crude oil derailed and caught fire in Illinois.

Days after the fiery derailment of an oil train near Galena, Illinois, nine Wisconsin citizens went to court to challenge an expansion of a rail system for oil trains in their community.

Walker dismisses report of big Menard donation, tax breaks

Written by SCOTT BAUER,
Associated Press writer
Thursday, 26 March 2015 08:54

Likely presidential candidate Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker this week dismissed a report that he helped steer tax credits and eased up on environmental oversight to benefit national hardware chain Menards after its billionaire owner donated $1.5 million to a conservative group.

Yahoo News has reported that John Menard Jr. gave the money to Wisconsin Club for Growth to help advance Walker’s agenda when he faced a recall election in 2012, citing several unidentified sources. Such donations are legal under campaign finance law and are not subject to limits or a requirement they be disclosed publicly.

Anti-gay governor set to sign anti-gay bill in Indiana

Written by The Associated Press Thursday, 26 March 2015 06:05

Indiana Gov. Mike Pence was expected to sign into law on March 26 a religious objections bill that sanctions discrimination against LGBT people.

The signing would make Indiana the first state to enact such a change this year among about a dozen where such proposals have been introduced. The measure would prohibit state and local laws that "substantially burden" the ability of people — including businesses and associations — to follow their religious beliefs.

'Perfect protein' — World's top chefs say eat small to protect oceans

Written by The AP Wednesday, 25 March 2015 10:39

Want to make a big impact on the health of our oceans? Think small, top chefs say. As in anchovies and sardines.

That's the message from 20 of the world's leading chefs, who gathered in northeastern Spain recently to draw attention to what they hope is a simple solution to the threat facing many of the larger fish species that overfishing has pushed to near collapse. Their take: If more people ate more little fish - anchovies, sardines, herring and mackerel, for example - both human diets and seafood populations would improve.

State to state activists campaign against ex-gay therapy

Written by Lisa Neff,
Staff writer
Thursday, 26 March 2015 12:13

Advocates for LGBT youth succeeded in March in thwarting a campaign in Oklahoma to give statutory protection to those who practice so-called “ex-gay” therapy on minors. 

No major medical or mental health associations endorse the therapy, which is dangerous and characterized by some leading health professionals as child abuse.

Bills targeting unions multiply in states

Written by From AP
and WiG reports
Thursday, 26 March 2015 08:08

UPDATED: It’s not just Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker. Taking their cue from conservative, corporate-backed anti-labor groups, Republican lawmakers in statehouses across the country are working to weaken organized labor, sometimes with efforts that directly shrink union membership.

The Republican wave in the November 2014 elections left many unions  vulnerable.

Federal judge strikes down restrictive Wisconsin abortion law

Written by AP
and WiG reports
Wednesday, 25 March 2015 17:04

UPDATED: A federal judge on March 20 struck down a Wisconsin law requiring doctors performing abortions to get hospital admitting privileges, ruling that any benefits to women’s health from the requirement are “substantially outweighed” by its restricting access to abortion.

Feds poison tens of thousands of birds in Nevada

Written by The Associated Press Wednesday, 25 March 2015 10:29

Land owners surprised to discover tens of thousands of dead birds across the high desert are criticizing the federal government over a mass killing of starlings in northern Nevada.

A U.S. Department of Agriculture spokesman said a pesticide was used to destroy the birds to prevent the spread of disease to dairy cows.

WiGWAG: News with a twist
March 26, 2015

Written by Lisa Neff, Louis Weisberg,
Matthew Reddin
Thursday, 26 March 2015 11:46


A Pennsylvania man in Wilkes-Barre thought he could ward off an arrest for public drunkenness by making himself untouchable. As police approached the apparently intoxicated man, he dropped to the ground and rolled around in dog waste. He then told police they couldn’t arrest him covered in feces. But they did.

North Carolina University suspends fraternity over racist, sexist entries in notebook

Written by The Associated Press Thursday, 26 March 2015 06:17

North Carolina State University has disbanded a fraternity chapter over a notebook filled with sexist and racially offensive entries.

The punishment comes amid recent cases of bad behavior at the University of Oklahoma, Penn State and other schools put fraternities in the national spotlight.

Voter ID law stands, but on hold for spring election

Written by Lisa Neff,
Staff writer
Wednesday, 25 March 2015 15:47

UPDATED: The U.S. Supreme Court on March 23 said it will not hear a challenge to Wisconsin’s voter photo ID law advanced by the Republican leadership.

Clinton: Nation must deal with income inequality

Written by The AP Wednesday, 25 March 2015 10:20

Approaching a likely presidential campaign announcement next month, Hillary Rodham Clinton said this week that income inequality and wage stagnation are problems that go hand-in-hand and the nation needs creative solutions to bolster job opportunities and living conditions in the cities.

Clinton, at a discussion about urban areas, cited the benefits of partnerships between the private and public sectors and updated policies to improve social mobility. The policy event offered a preview of economic themes she is likely to address in a campaign.