By The Progressive on February 20, 2014

Scott Walker may have prompted destruction of evidence in the first John Doe investigation.

On Friday, May 14, 2010, at 8:46 a.m., then-Milwaukee County Executive Walker responds to an e-mail he received from his deputies at "skw@scottwalker.org," one of his personal e-mail addresses. This is his now-infamous e-mail about staffer Darlene Wink, who had just resigned after admitting she posted campaign comments while at work. Her resignation was reported in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. "I talked to her at home last night," Walker writes. "Feel bad. She feels worse. We cannot afford another story like this one. No one can give them any reason to do another story. That means no laptops, no websites, no time away during workday, et cetera."

In testimony on November 1, 2010, the chief investigator for the Milwaukee County District Attorney's Office, David Budde, stresses why this is important: "The significance of this e-mail is that it shows that the County Executive would appear to be aware that laptops were used in the County Executive's Office for accessing things on non-County networks."

Budde also suggests -- and this has not been noted by the mainstream press -- that Walker's staffers might have taken his e-mail to mean that they should destroy evidence in the ensuing hours.

As Budde testified: "It also is very significant because it shows that the various members of the County Executive staff worked in concert to conceal laptops and/or networks -- wireless networks that were in existence in that office suite, and these items were not present when we did our search warrant later in the day on May 14, 2010."

Photo: "Tired businessman," via Shutterstock.

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By Wendell Berry

Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front

Love the quick profit, the annual raise,
vacation with pay. Want more 
of everything ready made. Be afraid 
to know your neighbors and to die.
And you will have a window in your head.
Not even your future will be a mystery 
any more. Your mind will be punched in a card 
and shut away in a little drawer.
When they want you to buy something 
they will call you. When they want you
to die for profit they will let you know. 
So, friends, every day do something
that won’t compute. Love the Lord. 
Love the world. Work for nothing. 
Take all that you have and be poor.
Love someone who does not deserve it. 
Denounce the government and embrace 
the flag. Hope to live in that free 
republic for which it stands. 
Give your approval to all you cannot
understand. Praise ignorance, for what man 
has not encountered he has not destroyed.
Ask the questions that have no answers. 
Invest in the millennium. Plant sequoias.
Say that your main crop is the forest
that you did not plant,
that you will not live to harvest.


Say that the leaves are harvested 
when they have rotted into the mold.
Call that profit. Prophesy such returns.
Put your faith in the two inches of humus 
that will build under the trees
every thousand years.
Listen to carrion—put your ear
close, and hear the faint chattering
of the songs that are to come. 
Expect the end of the world. Laugh. 
Laughter is immeasurable. Be joyful
though you have considered all the facts. 
So long as women do not go cheap 
for power, please women more than men.
Ask yourself: Will this satisfy 
a woman satisfied to bear a child?
Will this disturb the sleep 
of a woman near to giving birth? 
Go with your love to the fields.
Lie easy in the shade. Rest your head 
in her lap. Swear allegiance 
to what is nighest your thoughts.
As soon as the generals and the politicos 
can predict the motions of your mind, 
lose it. Leave it as a sign 
to mark the false trail, the way 
you didn’t go. Be like the fox 
who makes more tracks than necessary, 
some in the wrong direction.
Practice resurrection.

Wendell Berry is a poet, farmer, and environmentalist in Kentucky. This poem, first published in 1973, is reprinted by permission of the author and appears in his “New Collected Poems” (Counterpoint).


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