March 5, 2011

UW polisci prof Howard Schweber responds to my "Who started the restriction of access to the Wisconsin Capitol...?"

The full text of his email appears with the original post, here. You can read it there as a solid block of text without my bloggerly intrusions and elisions — which is what you're going to get here. Prof. Schweber writes:
1) Last Saturday protest leaders explained to me that the restrictions on entrances (only two open at opposite ends of the rotunda) had been set up by the police, and that the protest marshal's were voluntarily helping to enforce them to preserve good relations with the cooperation of the protesters themselves. This is what smart organizers do -- your claim that the restrictions "originated" with the protesters, as far as I know, is incorrect. 
I didn't "claim" anything. I described my experience, asked questions, suggested inferences from my evidence, and challenged people to bring in evidence that would prove me wrong. Good lord, my post ends with "PROVE ME WRONG" — and I almost never do all caps.

I welcome Prof. Schweber's contribution of his own evidence, which is a report of what "smart organizers" said to him. If they were so smart, they were concerned about PR, so they have a motive to distort the story. I'll assume Schweber is making a reasonably accurate summary of their statements — even though he paraphrased my post inaccurately — but I still don't trust them. They are doing politics as they talk to him. And, actually, Schweber is doing politics too. But he's a political scientist. I would love to hear a politically scientific analysis of the statements they made to him. Anyway, in evidence terms, we are dealing with double hearsay.

I don't even know who these "protest leaders" are. Meade and I were told — by protest leaders? — that there was no "hierarchy." Can you name them? Will they go on record by name, with written statements naming the police officials that they worked with, explaining what the process was in arriving at the policy, a written copy of the policy, how that policy was conveyed to the citizen-enforcers, and who the citizen-enforcers were? I see that some press outlets are suing Gov. Walker to get access to his email under the state open records law. I should make an open records request to the police to get their email with the protest leaders.

Anyway, this is a question of proof, and now we have 2 sets of data. Protest leaders told Prof. Schweber that the "marshals" were enforcing police restrictions. The duct-tape-labeled "marshal" who tried to stop me would not respond to my pointed inquiries about his authority and my repeated question "Who are you?" He did not say, "I am working with the police, and the police set up this policy." I wanted to know! I would have reported whatever information he gave me at that point, but it was withheld.

Indeed, I — and Meade! — were quickly shooed through the door — in violation of the policy. They really didn't want to have to talk with me. I would have video-recorded the encounter with the "marshal," and we would now have an accurate report of his assertion about what the arrangement was between the private-citizen "marshal" and the Capitol police. (It would still be hearsay.) The evidence we got instead was the decision to send me and Meade through the door, and we now must use that action as basis for inferences.

The inference I made in my original post was that he had no authority, that private citizens were appropriating a police role toward the public. Based on Schweber's report, I'm entertaining the possibility that the inference is that they were working with the police in a way that they didn't want to talk about. As Schweber says:
You may have a good argument to the effect that private citizens should not assist the police in enforcing lawful orders--although that's a pretty longstanding tradition. 
Really? I'd have to do some research into the nature of that tradition. Private citizens, after secretly consulting with the police to find a way to make their protest demonstration work well, can acquire the power to restrict access to an important public building — the most important building in the state, housing all 3 branches of state government — not just for members of their own group but for anyone else who attempts to enter, and they do not even need to explain to those citizens that they have been given the authority of the police? Citations, please.
And of course, if there were evidence that pro-Walker protesters were being treated differently than pro-union protesters that would be a different story, but I haven't heard anything to that effect.
The "marshal" told me that only a certain type of person was allowed to go right in and on his own determined that I was the sort of person who had to go wait in a long line — with the protesters who shared his agenda of making the event look orderly and pleasant. But I wasn't one of them, and I deeply resented being told, by a private citizen, that I belonged with them and not with the privileged people who got through that door. Please note that I did not say "Don't you know who I am?!" I said "Who are you?" And he would not answer. That's what got me through the door. You might think I was delighted that I sneaked in ahead of the line. I did not. I stood there, livid, and yelled "How dare he!" about 10 times before Meade calmed me down.
The restrictions to which the judge's order referred were not about closing doors and making people stand in line. 
Of course they weren't! The protesters were in league with the police about that. But the higher level principle of law is the same. The judge's decision rested on Article 1, § 4 — "The right of the people peaceably to assemble, to consult for the common good, and to petition the government, or any department thereof, shall never be abridged." If that is interpreted to include access to the Capitol building, then it's not limited to the precise fact pattern that the unions' lawyers chose to raise. There's no restricted access to constitutional rights!
As I understand it, starting this past weekend Capitol police would only allow individuals into the building if the were invited by a member of a legislative staff who came to the door to escort them, and each legislator's office was limited to 8 visitors. In addition, the police would let in precisely the number of persons that equally the number of chairs in a scheduled committee meeting. 
First, I don't think that was what was going on last Saturday. Second, if the marshal had explained that to me, I would have taken it into account. He refused to answer my questions.
In addition, police told reporters that they would allow one person in for every protester inside who left. Those actions were what prompted the motion for an injunction -- not the selective blocking of entrances and requirement that people stand in line....
Right. They restricted access. And they litigated about the aspect of restricted access that they didn't like. I'm objecting to a different aspect of restricted access. I didn't litigate, but the rule of law operates at a higher level of generality than whatever happened in that particular case. Now, maybe the restriction inflicted on me can be distinguished in some significant way so that my claim of right would fail, but that has not been litigated, and I am standing on my legal argument premised on the case.
... I don't care whether one agrees with the protests or not, it is no more truthful to describe the organizers as authoritarians limiting their own supporters free speech rights than it is to characterize them as union thugs.
I didn't do either of those things. I said they limited the rights of citizens who were not part of the protest. They took over the Capitol and barked orders at regular citizens. And you seem to think it doesn't matter because they shared an interest with the police in making the demonstration look good.
In other words, this ain't the 60's. No one is throwing bombs or even rocks. These are middle class protesters assembling to make a political staement, not agitators looking for a confrontation. 
What?! What does that have to do with me? I do understand that they cared about the optics and they wanted to be admired by the citizens of Wisconsin who'd have turned against them if they were too ugly or disorderly. You seem to be saying that I need to fall in line with the protest leaders to help the protest look good. No! I want to be a free citizen, independent of those people. They can do what they want within their own group, and of course, the decision to maintain order was a good one for them. But they can't absorb me into their agenda — even if I agreed with them. (In fact, plenty of the protesters were disorderly and ugly, like the lug who assaulted Meade, and the "superman" who yelled to drown out a reasonable conversation between 2 men.)
And they are Wisconsinites: they stand in line, they cooperate, they like to keep things peaceful and benign. They're just like that. 
Again. There was a line for some people and access for others. Is it a Wisconsin thing to accept assignment to second-class citizenry? Anyway, meekness is fine for the meek, but I prefer diversity of expression. I can understand leaders of a demonstration enforcing one style of behavior for the good of the collective, but it's for individuals to decide whether they want to belong to that collective. In America. Which includes Wisconsin. And I was not one of them.
It is quite true that the protesters are not free speech absolutists or insisting on exercising their rights to the fullest possible extent -- but that's because that's not what they are protesting about (this is also not the Berkeley Free Speech movement.)...
They don't set the agenda for me. I'll be my own free-speech movement. Eh. It's not a movement. It's just freedom. I want it.

ADDED: Prof. Schweber responds, via email, to this post:

In response to some of the comments by Prof. Althouse and readers:

- As Prof. Althouse is quite aware, "content neutral time, place and manner" restrictions on expression and assembly are permitted under the First Amendment so long as they are narrowly tailored to serve a substantial government interest and leave adequate alternative avenues for expression. I have not seen or heard anything to suggest that closing all but two of the doors to the Capitol building were more than that. If she and her husband were allowed to enter through one of the other entrances, that may reflect a weakness in enforcement; that's a failure of enforcement, not a defect in the original order.
It wasn't neutral! Assuming the police set up the policy in collusion with the protesters, it was designed to facilitate one viewpoint. And people were assigned subordinate status and told to wait in line. If the policy included private citizens exercising discretion and screwing up, it's even less neutral.
- There were tons of cops on the square. no one turned over law enforcement authority. 
Well, Meade was assaulted in full view of a cop, who did nothing. This took place in a large crowd, which turned hostile, accusing Meade of being a "Walker plant."
On the other hand, I stand by my statement that there is a long tradition of private individuals assisting the police in enforcing rules of various kinds, starting with neighborhood watch groups and going from there. If the objection is that law enforcement functions should not be turned over to private citizens, I agree with that sentiment--I only said that it is not unprecedented, not that it is a good idea. I am generally opposed to the privatization of public functions.
I'll grant you there are some other situations where private cooperation with the police seem acceptable, such as the neighborhood watch group which has to do with looking for criminals. In this situation, private enforcement of police policy — if that's what it was — restricted the free of movement and access of noncriminal citizens. It was also applied unequally and, apparently, with the purpose of facilitating the dominant speakers' point of view over the rights of individuals who are not part of the larger group. It was an intimidating environment for dissenting speakers, and letting these non-neutral "marshals" boss us around added to a message of exclusion.
- I have no connection of any kind to the protesters or their organizations. I was not on the square to protest -- I was there to see what was going on. My observations were different from those of Professor Althouse.

- I disagree with Prof. Althouse's claim that she was not characterizing the protesters in any particular way; my very strong sense from her statements was that we were intended to take away an impression of the protesters and anti-free speech authoritarians, which in turn was supposed to persuade us to be unimpressed by their own efforts to secure free speech rights. I stand by that assessment.
Is that assessment based on seeing the great variety of posts I've put up on this blog in the last 3 weeks?
- Words like "hearsay" are not appropriate outside a courtroom. 
They sure are! For one thing, the word "hearsay" is used all the time in common speech. And second, hearsay refers to something very specific, which is that if all we have is a statement, there's still a question as to the truth of the statement. In the courtroom, there's the extra matter of excluding the statement, a right to confront witnesses, and various exceptions, but I'm not saying we don't get to look at the statement because it's hearsay. I'm only saying that we don't know whether the statement is true, and the fact of it's assertion doesn't make it true. It's "double hearsay," because we need to rely on hearsay even to know whether the statement was made.
I am familiar with the rules of evidence, since I have been a lawyer and tried both criminal cases (as a prosecutor) and civil cases. The rules of hearsay are designed to ensure a degree of reliability in the evidence that is relied upon in reaching a legal decision. Where ordinary reporting is concerned, there is nothing wrong with including hearsay so long as the reporter clearly indicates the nature of what s/he is quoting, as I was careful to do. Certainly any reader or listener is free to give whatever weight they want to the evidence that is reported in this fashion.
There's nothing wrong with including it, but there's also nothing wrong with someone pointing out that it's hearsay and thus needs to be considered with whatever degree of skepticism is justified under the circumstances. If protest leaders, whose names are not even offered to put their reputation on the line, said things to Prof. Schweber that put their actions in a positive light, some skepticism is warranted.
- I did not mention this in the original post, but I was first told about the need to stand in line at one of the designated doors by a Capitol police officer.

- Obviously I muffed the reporter's name due to some weird mental glitch. It is Dustin Weis, he is a reporter for WTDY radio and a  columnist.

- The "cry bullshit" phrase came from an e-mail that Prof. Althouse sent to me. I apologize for not making that clear, as well as for the inadequacy of my proofreading.
I just checked the email, and you are wrong. I had written, in my original post, "I call bullshit on Lautenschlager's 'we won.'" Your original email to me said "with all due respect, your 'crying bullshit' is bullshit." That email was a response to the post, not to any email I sent. You initiated the email exchange. It's kind of weird that when you go back, with a precise motivation to make a correction, that you would get that wrong!

146 comments:

Chris said...

Prof. Althouse, you sound very defensive in this post.

Please step back and re-evaluate your response.

Your point of view is very important to your readers, including me. You can play a constructive role in understanding the events in Wisconsin.

Robin said...

I love it when someone tries to bullshit and huff through a discussion with Althouse.
She doesn't sound the least defensive to me. She sounds just a tad exasperated at the sub par level of the bullshit, though.

MartyH said...

From his e-mail, "I got this information from a reporter, Dustin Pedroia..."

Was this reporter's photographer Derek Jeter?

Seriously, how many "Dustin Pedroia's" can there be? And what are the odds that this "reporter" would have the same name as a famous baseball player?

shoutingthomas said...

I don't see any importance in this.

The Dems don't respect the rule of law. Their representatives fled rather than vote.

Shut down the building. Tell the protesters to go home.

Drag the Dems into the Senate chamber. Defeat them.

Let the protesters win a Pyrrhic victory in court after the shouting's over.

I really could care less about allowing these morons to continue their strike.

Their side has trashed the rule of law. All bets are off as far as I'm concerned. For the Dems, the rule of law is only sacred when you know you're going to win the vote on the floor. Otherwise... well, we'll run away to Illinois.

Althouse, this is nonsense. Shut the protests down any way possible.

James said...

1) Last Saturday protest leaders explained to me that the restrictions on entrances (only two open at opposite ends of the rotunda) had been set up by the police, and that the protest marshal's were voluntarily helping to enforce them to preserve good relations with the cooperation of the protesters themselves.

I'd like to think that Professor Schweber proofread his e-mail before giving Althouse permission to publish it. Didn't he notice the incorrect use of the possessive in marshal's? Or is using an intentional misspelling of the department store name?

3) Consequently, with all due respect, your "crying bullshit" is bullshit. The protesters cooperated with police to ensure that public access to -- and egress from -- the Capitol would be peaceful and orderly in accordance with content-neutral time, place, and manner restrictions.

Its interesting to me that Professor Schweber placed quotation marks around the phrase "crying bullshit." A phrase that does not appear anywhere in Althouse's original post.

With all due respect, Professor Schweber is full of shit. And I say that as a Wisconsin taxpayer and the parent of a son who is about to enroll at UW-Madison. Makes me want to reconsider that decision but the professor clearly "beclowns" himself.

Jeffrey said...

I've been reading this blog for at least five years, I guess. Ann does not sound defensive here. As Robin says above, "exasperated" is a better term.

Charging someone with being "defensive" can be used as a ploy to shut someone up. Of course, that ain't gonna work here.

Ann is focused for a good reason. She has an opportunity to examine in detail how politics and reporting and agendas work together in a series of events for which she was present.

lasckbounce said...

AA--you and the good prof(possessor of law degree) shud save this pissing contest for vemue that reqiures a cause and standing--you both have an odor.

NotYourTypicalNewYorker said...

Uh, oh, they gone done it now....!

Moonfeather.rift said...

Prof. Althouse, you sound very defensive in this post.

....

That sounds defensive you to? I would hate to see what sounds aggressive to you!

WV: Persest. A persistent pest, which I think Althouse and Meade qualify for towards certain people who don't want people asking certain questions.

traditionalguy said...

Nice post Professor. As a Senior Judge, (who had the habit of secretly helping out the DA's office with suggestions during criminal jury trials) once complained to me, " You tried the hell out of that case".

Issob Morocco said...

Ann,

Stellar disassembly of Prof. Schweber's attempt to spin, rather than report what he heard.

One of the leaders was the young lady you and Meade encountered at the War Memorial. The young man in the hat and Wisco red shirt said he would call who was in charge. She showed up and told you both what you wanted to hear.I also believe that young woman to be in Meade's lastest blog talking to him about the counter protest and how because he called someone fat, the mood became bad.

This action was collusion between government actors (the police) and protestors to effect an outcome tha was positive for them in the media. Nothing less.

Organizers? Sounds suspiciously like this was not just a spontaneous event at least not after the first couple of days, but something either hijacked or created by these 'organizers' to make it into a staged media event.

That is what is known as propaganda.

It seems the Lefty protestors closed the access doors to the capital just like they have closed their minds to opposing thought.

Fen said...

Chris, you're nowhere near as clever as you think. You're transparent.

James said...

I'd hazard a guess that Schweber was involved with the protestors - at least in an advisory role - and isn't taking kindly to seeing his work criticized.

edutcher said...

Protest marshals? (Schweber uses possessive instead of plural, BTW, and people wonder at the state of education in this country...)

As I asked last weekend, where were the cops?

They should have been all over the place, it should have been awash in blue uniforms.

A real eye-opener for those of us who get called to police organizations.

Paddy O said...

Chris, I'd be much more interested in you evaluating Althouse's response than your non-response in questioning how she phrased her response.

Althouse already is playing a constructive role and doesn't need a school-marmish scolding about her tone, especially when it's not as much defensive as what I would see as professorial.

If you think her tone is defensive, then I'd guess you have never heard academics going back and forth in serious debate on topics close to their interest and/or area of study.

She certainly sounds no more defensive than the polisci prof she's responding to.

"You sound defensive" is an issue of your perception. I would ask you to step back and re-evaluate your biases and pre-established perceptions before commenting.

Maguro said...

This action was collusion between government actors (the police) and protestors to effect an outcome tha was positive for them in the media. Nothing less.

Yes...collusion is a much better word than cooperation to describe what went on that day.

The cops abdicated their authority over the Capitol to the "protest leaders" in order to make a political point.

Real banana republic stuff.

DADvocate said...

Protest leaders told Prof. Schweber that the "marshals" were enforcing police restrictions.

Private citizens have no business restricting access to a public building unless that building has been rented or leased for a private activity.

And they are Wisconsinites: they stand in line, they cooperate, they like to keep things peaceful and benign. They're just like that.

The word he's looking for is "sheeple."

In other words, this ain't the 60's. No one is throwing bombs or even rocks. These are middle class protesters assembling to make a political staement, not agitators looking for a confrontation.

Like so many other lefties, he's lost in the sixties.

Pretty much just the usual lefty diatribe of excuse making and rationalization. He probably thinks that his every word is sacred because he's a professor, but he's come up against a more intelligent, rational professor.

Browndog said...

Now, THIS is the type of writing that made me a regular Althouse reader, and seemed to missing for quite a while.

I suspect many of her readers would have seen getting through the door as a solution to the problem.

Althouse saw it, correctly, that getting through the door was the problem.

perspective.....

Windbag said...

Anarchy, monarchy, tyranny, aristocracy, oligarchy, democracy. Rinse and repeat.

AllenS said...

These are middle class protesters assembling to make a political staement, not agitators looking for a confrontation.

Define middle class.

DADvocate said...

Chris, I'd be much more interested in you evaluating Althouse's response...

Not me. Chris, feel free to say nothing.

TJ said...

What is clear to me is that this Schweber dude thinks he is going to step up and speak for all the leftist teacher parasites, because, after all, he is so intellectually equipped to do so.

He is wrong from the start, basing his arguments on hearsay but thinks that if types enough he will prove to someone (the lefty parasites?) that he is correct in his assertions.

When it comes down to it, these types of arguments are won or lost on the minutiae, and Althouse handed him his ass.

Charlie Martin said...

Chris, it ain't often she gets pissed off enough to go into lawyerin' mode. That's not defensive, that's a warning growl.

I'd love to see you carry through on that open records request.

Fen said...

Schweber: protest leaders explained to me that the restrictions on entrances had been set up by the police, and that the protest marshal's were voluntarily helping to enforce them to preserve good relations with the cooperation of the protesters themselves

That doesn't follow. I've worked with Police (even Capitol Police in Austin) on numerous occasions. Its not in their nature to turn over security to the very people they are warding the Capitol against.

Dovetailed with recent news that Capitol Police had the ground floor windows re-secured after discovering people had removed the bolting locks, I'm very skeptical of the protestor claim that police had given them authority to grant/deny access to the building.

your claim that the restrictions "originated" with the protesters, as far as I know, is incorrect.

You don't have enough information to make such a claim. You even admit this with your disqualifier. That you would do so calls into question your judgement and objectivity. Also, why didn't you corroborate the protester account with Police?

Schweber, you need to sharpen your arguments. You sound like a hack. Combined with the sloppy spelling errors in your email, I'm left wondering if a student accessed your email account.

Jeffrey said...

Okay, let's have some fun with Chris's comment.

Prof. Althouse, you sound very defensive in this post.

The deference he displays by addressing Ann as "professor" is supposed to disarm her. Velvet glove, brass knuckles underneath.

Please step back and re-evaluate your response.

This really sounds more like HAL from 2001: A Space Odyssey, right?

Your point of view is very important to your readers, including me. You can play a constructive role in understanding the events in Wisconsin.

I guess he's saying, "Althouse, you're a plant and you don't even know it. You could play a constructive role, but right now you're just being a destructive twit." Again, the stiff syntax and plain lexical choices are used to make himself seem neutral. Also, saying "your point of view is very important" sounds condescending, like a PC schoolmarm.

Unfortunately for Chris, with the AA readers here, no more Windex is needed to increase the tranparency.

*

Chris said...

Everyone,

Thanks for your comments; perhaps I misread the Professors tone. She came across to me as defensive, though.

This is a tough time for everyone in Wisconsin.

Why should an "regular citizen" be treated differently than a protestor?

By what standards should the police distinguish between "regular citizens" and protestors?

How can the proposed solution be reconciled with the Wisconsin Constitution?

Belittling the protestors is not the answer to the problems we are facing in Wisconsin.

PatCA said...

A fine rebuttal. Enough to stall our own Cultural Revolution frenzy? I don't know.

(Marshal's.
Fingernails on a blackboard.
No wonder our students are illiterate.)

Issob Morocco said...

Harriet Rowan, she is just a student per her claim on Democracy Now there to protest. However Meade's Feb. 25 blog post video shows her to be an organizer and a floor leader per the clueless War Memorial desecrators as she was called to come and deal with Ann and Meade when they 'stunned' and stumped the dupes.

And in his video blog this morning she proudly communicates how she went down to intervene when a Walker supporter started his own protest that day in favor of the Governor only to be drowned out and confronted rather brusquely, though he was civil, except as Harriet states, when he called someone fat.

Compared to some of the puerile and perjorative descriptions thrown on Gov. Walker, it seems to me that is thin gruel on which to base a reason to ask someone to go elsewhere to state their opinion.

Who is Harriet Rowan and is she really just a student?

Perhaps Prof. Schweber could provide some info since he seems to be in with them.

Trooper York said...

I would have said "Fuck you pal" and walked right in.

This whole thing is bullshit. Walker should just start chopping the money so the pink slips can go out. Losing their jobs will get their attention right quick.

traditionalguy said...

The heart of our politics today is contained in your statement that , "...enforcing one style of behavior for the collective..." is not the same as individuals, who are acting within the Law, deciding on their own to act or not to act. European Socialism is a poison we are being force fed today, and it only leads to Kings (Obama) with a Pope's (The UN's ) international authority decreeing what new aristocrats get what economic fiefs and who must be their serfs. And this division is shown clearly here by one "door for collective sheep " and one "door for favored persons". Exposing that was a gutsy move, Professor.

Jeffrey said...

Charlie,

Chris, it ain't often she gets pissed off enough to go into lawyerin' mode. That's not defensive, that's a warning growl..

Love that phrase "lawyerin' mode."

*

Trooper York said...

Chris said....
Belittling the protestors is not the answer to the problems we are facing in Wisconsin.

Dude, what are you ten years old?
Politics ain't bean bag son. These douchenozzles are lucky the only thing that is happening to them is that they are being belittled.

I remember when I was a kid and John Rooney was my Congressman and he sent out word that the construction workers were going to beat the shit out of a bunch of dirty hippies in aroud 1970 or so. My cousin was one of those guys who went downtown for that. That actually was organized by the union
in one of the many instances of union mob violence.

Of course guys in the unions then were WW2 vets and real Americans and not commie hippie douchenozzles like the kumbaya cocksuckers in the teachers union. Just sayn'

rmblam said...

"Shut the protests down any way possible."

I firmly reject this; as it is counter to the essence of the first amendment.

We are getting a great civics lesson in Madison right now. If you can't see the value then you need to think about it all some more.

The power of free speech is on display. The suppression of free speech, by the agitators, is on display. They are using the ignorant public as a tool; and doing so in plain view.

We can talk about this civics lesson; but it is far less impressionable than to actually be able to witness it.

History, by repeating it.

Fen said...

[watch this]

Chris: She came across to me as defensive, though.

Please give an example of where she came across as defensive.

Note that the "I won't take the bait, goodbye" response you gave yesterday is still hanging over your head.

johnvert said...

The access to the capitol was hijacked by the protesters and the police. The police had the same skin in this as any other public employee. They worked with the protesters to make this facade of a peaceful protest. I've never seen babysitters(marshals) at any tea party events.

TJ said...

Trooper York for Governor.

"This whole thing is bullshit. Walker should just start chopping the money so the pink slips can go out. Losing their jobs will get their attention right quick."

This is the correct response. Walker should not say anything, just start doing. Talking just helps the opposition.

They should also kill collective bargaining in a separate bill now. Then this nonsense will stop.

MayBee said...

This:
on his own determined that I was the sort of person who had to go wait in a long line — with the protesters who shared his agenda of making the event look orderly and pleasant. But I wasn't one of them, and I deeply resented being told, by a private citizen, that I belonged with them and not with the privileged people who got through that door.

Is what I was trying to express to Chip S yesterday. Althouse did not have the agenda of making the event look good. The event looking good is part of the organizers' PR agenda.

But this is how Chip responded to me:

I'm kinda surprised that you don't think that there was a common interest in maintaining order.

Ann Althouse said...

"Why should an "regular citizen" be treated differently than a protestor? By what standards should the police distinguish between "regular citizens" and protestors?"

1. Because the policy was (it seems) made by protest leaders with the police for the purpose of helping the protesters produce good optics, and regular citizens do not necessarily share that agenda. Secret law, designed to serve one political point of view, imposed on all. That's not democratic!

2. The policy set up 2 classes of persons, for the purpose of serving the interests of the protesters (it seems). A regular citizen who isn't in league with the protesters should not be assigned to the class of persons given a subordinate level of access.

Issob Morocco said...

Harriet Rowan, a UW Madison Senior and Washington, D.C. native. Hmmm...interesting find on a very quick search.

Despite her wanting to seem like just a kid from Wisco in her many media postings, she grew up in Washington, D.C.

Knowing that I wonder what her parents do or did? Was she involved in politics, say of the left variety when growing up?

Jeffrey said...

Chris,

This is a tough time for everyone in Wisconsin.

Aw hell, did you just write that?

*cue violins*

Damn, Ma and Pa Kettle are getting foreclosed on again, folks. It just ain't right.

*

shoutingthomas said...

The power of free speech is on display. The suppression of free speech, by the agitators, is on display. They are using the ignorant public as a tool; and doing so in plain view.

Fuck that! The vote on the Senate floor has been sabotaged by 14 Dems fleeing to Illinois and then enlisting these piece of crap protestors to try to straight arm the people of Wisconsin into surrender.

What you have here is classic leftist strategy. Breaking the law and refusing to honor elections is "free speech!"

The rule of law means fuck in this situation. The Dems have abandoned the rule of law. I say fuck them up the ass.

Just my opinion. The Dems sacrificed their plea to the "rule of law" when they refused to abide by electoral results.

MayBee said...

I'd love to know if Prof Schweber ever described tea party protesters thusly:

"These are middle class protesters assembling to make a political staement, not agitators looking for a confrontation "

Ann Althouse said...

"I'm kinda surprised that you don't think that there was a common interest in maintaining order."

If that was the interest the police were following, they'd have barred drums from the Capitol, cleared the place out at night, removed signs that were taped to the wall, not permitted belongings to be left piled on the floor unattended, etc. etc.

Obviously, it wasn't.

Now, one police officer told me last Saturday that the protesters got special treatment because there were so many of them and they were so passionate. I questioned him about how other people with other causes would be treated in the future. (As a law professor, I was interested in whether there would be viewpoint discrimination.) Basically, these people got special treatment that nobody else has gotten before or will ever get in the future.

James said...

She's a community organizer in training.

PETER V. BELLA said...

Con law prof vs. poli sci prof. No contest.

jeff said...

Has anyone had the curticy to send Mr Schweber the Bailey letter? He has the right to know. http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_VKnlNvwbGMM/TUm0hSud9XI/AAAAAAAAC58/MtxzgfHa1Fc/s1600/Letter+2.jpg

Fen said...

Schweber is also the past coach of the UW-Madison College Mock Trial Team

Really? Althouse, I'm sorry but I think you need to get verbal confirmation that Schweber actually wrote such a careless "argument".

Big Mike said...

Anyway, meekness is fine for the meek, but I prefer diversity of expression. I can understand leaders of a demonstration enforcing one style of behavior for the good of the collective, but it's for individuals to decide whether they want to belong to that collective. In America. Which includes Wisconsin. And I was not one of them.

Change that last "was" to "am," and the UW Law School should chisel your words into granite over their doorway.

Paddy O said...

"Why should an "regular citizen" be treated differently than a protestor?"

They shouldn't. But at the same time, a regular citizen should not be treated as one of the protesters. This is an issue of power and control. The protesters do not have the right to control the narrative of what is going on. They do not have the right to control what policies are enforced, ignored, or created based on their actions.

A regular citizen should not lose rights simply because a group of protesters have decided to organize themselves with certain goals and certain guidelines. The guidelines and practices of their protest should not be required for all citizens. That is ceding power to the protesters, which can't be done.

So your question is backwards. Why should a regular citizen be forced to submit to the restrictions the protesters have enabled?

By what standards should the police distinguish between "regular citizens" and protestors?

Protesters are submitting to their own choices of policies to follow or ignore. If people want to be part of defining the narrative of the protest event, then they have that right and should be treated accordingly.

The protest leaders want to define their narrative, but cannot then go on to insist that everyone fit into this narrative. In situations of voluntary submission, the police should take into account the fact that one small group of people simply cannot define the speech and freedom of others.

"How can the proposed solution be reconciled with the Wisconsin Constitution?"

A good question, but I think outside the bounds of this particular incident. If the issue of the Constitution were really important, there would be Democratic senators in session, and a vote would have been already taken.

So, the question becomes why one group of people thinks it can define which policies or laws can be ignored and which must be followed. They cannot fall back into a position of "law and policy" when they are explicit about following these only in a way that fits their own interests.

If you want to argue Constitution and Law, you need to start at the beginning of this apparent crisis, and not only when the situation is no longer in your favor and the participants in question are not on your side.

AJ Lynch said...

Chris said:

"Prof. Althouse, you sound very defensive in this post."

She should be defensive. I did not read her entire post but when Schweber writes "he spoke to protest leaders",I thought who the F are they and why the F do they assume they can control a public space for their own narrow objectives? F them. And btw, my 'F" stands for Freedom.

rmblam said...

Speaking of restricted access and free speech issues..... (not comparing Madison to this, but then again I'm not the one saying "from Cairo to Madison", right?)

"We have our own rules, this is not Sweden"

http://proteinwisdom.com/?p=25292

James said...

Has anyone had the curticy to send Mr Schweber the Bailey letter? He has the right to know. http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_VKnlNvwbGMM/TUm0hSud9XI/AAAAAAAAC58/MtxzgfHa1Fc/s1600/Letter+2.jpg

You need to embed that in a link:
Bailey letter

jeff said...

"You need to embed that in a link"
I figured someone who knew how would do it for me. There is a bit of progressive in all of us, even charter members of the VRWC such as myself.

RC3 said...

Great stuff, Professor, and a deserved intellectual beatdown of Schweber's bullshit email. Wow is he mentally outgunned.

Issob Morocco said...

A little more research on Harriet Rowan finds her in a lot of news articles, more than I would suspect a normal UW student protestor would be quoted. How did so many media types stumble into her and her only so many times? From Fox News to Democracy Now to AP and on and on.

She also appears, like light, to be one thing when written up one way, "just a student volunteer", and something different when written by another, "one of the organizers of the protest".

For someone who just 'volunteered' on Feb. 15th, I call her out as an organizer, trying to pose like a high minded student taken to action because of the evil Gov. Walker.

To be in that many news articles, and presented as how she felt it presented best as well as from seeing her in action in Meade's Feb. 25th War Memorial desecration confrontation, she is a leader alright and one who has significantly well honed political skills.

Thar is more that lurks there than what she would want one to think.

AJ Lynch said...

Dr. Schweber:
IMO colleges should get rid of poli sci depts and I'd start with Harvard's Kennedy School of Government and work my way westward across the country. Why do we need schools that teaches how we can make govt bigger?

Fen said...

Schweber: You may have a good argument to the effect that private citizens should not assist the police in enforcing lawful orders--although that's a pretty longstanding tradition.

Would you support Tea Party members stalking the Fleeing 14 in Illinois and bringing them back to the SGT at Arms, as directed by the Senate?

Or is that somehow "different"...

Hagar said...

Where did the term "political science" originate?
I would think that is as much a contradiction in terms as "miltary intelligence" or any of the variations of that ancient quip.

There are too many "disciplines" in things that are not "disciplines" at this country's colleges.

Lincolntf said...

"These are middle class protesters assembling to make a political staement, not agitators looking for a confrontation ".

Most of the locals I've read have been not quite "whitewashing" the Hitler symbology, Union members shouting down opponents, fake doctor's notes, etc., but they're obviously eager to pretend those things didn't happen. Not to mention the beginning of this thing when Teachers simply abandoned their jobs.
Not exactly Chamber of Commerce promotional material.

Paddy O said...

It occurs to me that such organizing, insisting that created policies are equivalent to law, are a particularly "teacherly" thing to do.

They create policies in their classrooms and basically go through their whole career being the king or queen of their domain. But, the trouble is that this attitude doesn't or can't extend pass their own classroom. But it often does.

So, in creating approaches or policies that facilitate their goals they begin to assume this must apply to everyone, simply because they say so.

If you defy them, they're liable to write your name on the board, or on the poster they're carrying. That's probably why Walker's name shows up so much.

johnvert said...

Dont give Harriet Rowan that much credit, she appears to be a mental midget with talking points.

JohnJ said...

“And of course, if there were evidence that pro-Walker protesters were being treated differently than pro-union protesters that would be a different story, but I haven't heard anything to that effect.”

I'm trying to give Schweber the benefit of a doubt here, but this particular statement seems contrary to virtually everything we've seen occurring at the Capitol the past two weeks.

Conservatives 4 Better Dental Hygiene said...

This is a very long and boring post, and it's hard to tell if you have a point. Please revise.

Issob Morocco said...

Harriet Rowan, an enormously great organizer.

"I came back on Tuesday night and there was absolutely no organization," Rowan said. "People needed people to go up upstairs and testify all night to keep the building open ... people were going around just waking people up ... it was chaotic."

"The University of Wisconsin senior made a snap decision to coordinate protest efforts, producing signs with media talking points and starting a Twitter feed detailing legislative meeting times, union rally locations and details on day–to–day life in the Capitol."

As reported by TMCnet World News.

Seems she went from cheering on Bo Ryan's team on the 12th to being the protest's logistical presence and media darling overnight.

Now who is Paul Adler, also from Washington D.C., who is also mentioned in the same news articles as Harriet? Did they know each other? Is Paul from Wisco?

Were they OFA members perhaps?

Conservatives 4 Better Dental Hygiene said...

I say fuck them up the ass.

Geez, Shouting Thomas. Tell us what you really think.

Issob Morocco said...

Paul Adler, Georgetown University student and Political Organizer.

knox said...

Basically, these people got special treatment that nobody else has gotten before or will ever get in the future.

I dunno. It seems to me there's a separate set of rules for those on the left, all the time. They can make racist comments and get away with it. They can have violent, mob protests (G4) and the media covers it like bad weather, move on, nothing to see here. Democrat politicians and organizations (Frank, Dodd, ACORN) can do their thing for years, and "Investigative Journalists" look the other way.

Look at the Pigford scandal. I haven't seen the mainstream media pay much attention to it at all.

I am half-convinced that, knowing the gig's up, the unions will "mobilize" (if you know what I mean) for the next elections, and this will all be for nought.

When the police are in collusion, what can you expect. Feeling especially cynical today, I guess.

Issob Morocco said...

Mr. Adler is a legislative assistant at Global Trade Watch, an offshoot of Public Citizen Organization, a Ralph Nader founded organization which claims to be non-partisan but just because they say so, does not mean it is true basis what they protest and pursue through their front organizations.

Why would he take leave of his job to go demonstrate in Madison?

Looks like bussing in those outside agitators was a good thing for Wisco, eh?

BJM said...

Law prof gun, Polsci prof fish, barrel.

Issob Morocco said...

Madison Protest the result of outside interests hijacking a state budget issue to serve their own political drive for power.

Hard core leftists in collusion with law enforcement and the old media to spin cycle the story so as to preserve their message.

Nothing easier to dislike than those who care not about the issue on the ground but how that issue can be used to further their own causes.

Organizing For America cranked this up, with DNC and Presidential support and approval. Harriet and Paul part of that effort.

Kind of takes away the 60's culture of revolution from the people lustre when you can see armies of savvy organizers coordinating and directing useful idiots.

Nary a free thinker in the bunch and if not for Ann and Meade, these stories would not come to light.

cryptical said...

From Harriets Facebook (first return from googling her name):

Activities and Interests
Other
CRUCIAL COURIERS, Evo Morales, International Solidarity Movement, Banksy, Ayman Mohyeldin, PostSecret, Al Jazeera English, Window Into Palestine, Kavanah: An Open Dialogue on the Israel/Palestine Conflict, Henry Kissinger, War Criminal, Michael Moore, Omar Little, 1,000,000 STAND STRONG AGAINST THE ATTACK ON THE CIVILIAN GAZA AID FLOTILLA, Democracy Now!, Madison Community Wellness Collective and 8 more

Looks like a good little lefty.

Lincolntf said...

Oh, cripes. Anyone who still gives any credence to Michael Moore should have "IDIOT" henna-tattoed on their sharply sloping forehead.

Issob Morocco said...

johnvert, Harriet is not a mental midget, just the opposite. I would say she is very savvy, like a con artist, bending enough to ingratiate and diffuse and if seeing she cannot sway she moves on to someone else.

Check out her performances on Democracy Now, Meade's War Memorial Desecration Confrontation and last night's Meade Video.

Great pathology into a very power driven individual. She is not just repeating talking points, she is creating them and having the useful idiots repeat them.

Don't be fooled...

kent said...

- Words like "hearsay" are not appropriate outside a courtroom.

Thank heaven for small mercies that Professor Schweber isn't affiliated with the English department.

Triangle Man said...

Holy crap! I agree with lincoltf about something. Alert the meadea.

Also, James, thank you for your link advocacy. We must stamp out HTML illiteracy in our time.

kent said...

Belittling the protestors is not the answer to the problems we are facing in Wisconsin.

The protesters are the problem being faced by Wisconsin, right now.

Well, that and the sappy, calf-eyed, adolescent mooning over (and emotional fetishizing of) same by the members in good standing of their plodding and relentless online apologia choir, I mean.

Pretty much anyone slackjawed and/or credulous enough to genuinely believe that elected representatives scuttling away like cockroaches under cover of darkness and having themselves a nice, long out-of-state group poutrage is "what democracy looks like," really, when you get right down to it.

shiloh said...

So AA being put on the defensive by another WI professor requires another I, I, I blurb in her daily blog.

and the band played on ...

It is interesting how AA always seeks reassurance re: her self-righteous ways from her highly partisan conservative audience.

ie preaching to the choir!

Cheryl said...

A minor point: "Hearsay is a statement, other than one made by the declarant while testifying at the trial or hearing, offered in evidence to prove the truth of the matter asserted." That is why the use of the word "hearsay" is inappropriate outside of a courtroom or other judicial tribunal. Remember, precision is important.

dave in boca said...

The Dem tactic, using their pressie and newsie fellow-travellers, to sue for info that will help the Dems thwart the Governor's budget plan is all of a piece with the constant use of litigation by the Dems to enmesh all political aims other than their own in legal obstacles.

The main reason Sarah Palin wisely left her job in Juneau was harassment by lawyers, whom Shakespeare justly believed should all be killed...!

Keep fighting for the truth, Ann, and don't let lifers with tenure cramp your style. I just hope some creepy academic doesn't try to mess with your teaching career...

Alex said...

Prof. Althouse, you sound very defensive in this post.
Please step back and re-evaluate your response.
Your point of view is very important to your readers, including me. You can play a constructive role in understanding the events in Wisconsin.

I've been reading this blog for at least five years, I guess. Ann does not sound defensive here. As Robin says above, "exasperated" is a better term.
AA--you and the good prof(possessor of law degree) shud save this pissing contest for vemue that reqiures a cause and standing--you both have an odor.

Some new trolls have appeared! They also seem 100% certain that Althouse is the one in the wrong here, not the smelly hippie thugs!

David53 said...

It is interesting how AA always seeks reassurance re: her self-righteous ways from her highly partisan conservative audience.

Your obsession with her behavior is much more interesting. Instead of addressing the issue, you need to talk about Althouse.

Blessings!

Alex said...

Notice the stakes are very high, so the paid leftist agitators come in here trying to smear Althouse. She must be discredited at all costs since she & Meade are credible "New Media".

adaplant said...

Ms Althouse seems to be somewhat similar to what in common parlance is often referred to as a douchebag.

bagoh20 said...

So some people with political motives decided to lie to people and use appeal to authority to control them access to a public building where nothing really was happening but chanting.

Such tragedy.

What happened is common, expected, and didn't really prevent you from entering. Some people lied (unsuccessfully) to you, period. You handled it appropriately at the time, and exposing it is fine, but why so much emotion about it? Why this? This is not going to bankrupt the state, cost people their jobs, or continue the decline of education.

I think you just feel safe getting so outraged about this because it's still acceptable to your liberal mind to fight against such a thing, which requires no real tough choices or taking of ideological sides. You can still claim some kind of neutrality while getting upset about this, but it misses all the real issues. Move on.

shiloh said...

The main reason Sarah Palin wisely left her job in Juneau

No, she just wanted to flee the heat in her kitchen and make a lot of $$$ ...

so, relatively speaking, one of her few rational decisions!

and let the record show I did not start the mama grizzly discussion ;)

kent said...

Your obsession with her behavior is much more interesting. Instead of addressing the issue, you need to talk about Althouse.

Specialists in the field of abnormal psychology refer to this as "the Annie Wilkes Syndrome."

shiloh said...

apologies to douchebags ...

bagoh20 said...

All the offenders have to say is: "Sorry, we shouldn't have, we won't do it again".

It effects nothing.

Mutaman said...

Anne, seriously. With all due respect, you've got way too much time on your hands. You're just embarrasing yourself.

cthulu said...

Your obsession with her behavior is much more interesting. Instead of addressing the issue, you need to talk about Althouse.

Specialists in the field of abnormal psychology have taken to referring to this set of compulsive behaviors as "the Annie Wilkes syndrome."

mike said...

Oh Shiloh, you liberals really turn ugly when you're losing.

shiloh said...

Soooo, AA and her conservative flock of lemmings are all Kathy Bates re: their 24/7, childish obsession w/Obama ...

'nuf said!

David53 said...

Spot on diagnosis Evil One.

jwin95 said...

- quoting only a Fair Use portion:

"Keeping up with the Capitol trash" by Mark Leland from WLUK TV

Updated: Feb 20, 2011 9:41 PM

Whenever you get thousands of people turning up in one place day after day, you’re going to create a mess. Janitors at the Capitol in Madison are overwhelmed with all the protests, but a self organized group of volunteers is coming to the rescue.

... "We don’t want to give any extra burden to clean up staff or police," said Trevor Young-Hyman of the Teachers Assistants Association.

... "People are constantly coming up to us asking how they can help and one of the things we say is grab a trash can and pick up trash," said Harriet Rowan, UW-Madison student.

Rowan is a senior at the UW-Madison. She joined other students in the clean up effort. They head up what is called the Information Station inside the Capitol, setting up their office in a busy hallway.


As a side note, maybe this is why no 'unusual trash' is available for photographing (re: Rush and an eariler inciting quote) ...


.

jwin95 said...

A 23-yr old Harriet Rowan?

How many yrs has she been on campus?

The story is in Bloomberg: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-03-04/wisconsin-protesters-exit-capitol-for-first-time-in-over-2-weeks.html
By Esmé E. Deprez - Mar 4, 2011

- - - - -
Wisconsin protesters, occupying the statehouse in opposition to Governor Scott Walker’s proposal to curb collective-bargaining rights, agreed to leave peacefully late yesterday for the first time since Feb. 15.

...

“I feel like it’s a victory, but it’s one battle and there’s many more,” said Harriet Rowan, a 23-year-old senior at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Rowan, like many of her companions, vowed to return today.

- - - - -

jwin95 said...

In her own words:

HARRIET BLAIR ROWAN: My name is Harriet Rowan, and I’m a senior at UW Madison. I’ve been here since the February 14th rally, and I’ve been here every night of the sleep-in. Yeah, I’m just a student who’s here in solidarity with everyone and also concerned about, you know, the future of our university and for the future for students all over Wisconsin.

More, see: the Democracy Now website (be sure to watch the video shown there in which she appears; press play and it will take you to the beginning of the segment in which she appears at about 49:45)

.

vnjagvet said...

Althouse has clearly left a mark. First we have leavings from concern trolls, then from some regulars who specialize in ad hom getting ever nastier, and now from mutaman giving AA unsolicited career advice.

BTW, I can tell why Schweber no longer practices law for a living.

Fen said...

Schweber: Where ordinary reporting is concerned, there is nothing wrong with including hearsay so long as the reporter clearly indicates the nature of what s/he is quoting, as I was careful to do. Certainly any reader or listener is free to give whatever weight they want to the evidence that is reported in this fashion.

Thats just a bullshit way of sneaking an unfounded claim past the audience. Its a cheap tactic, and I'm surprised a teacher would advance it.

Like this: "One of Schweber's TAs told me he routinely engages in sexual relationships with his students in exchange for higher grades. Certainly any reader is free to give whatever weight they want to the evidence that is reported in this fashion".

Trooper York said...

And by the way shiloh I am not a lemming.

I am a weasel.

Get it right bucko!

Crimso said...

"I would love to hear a politically scientific analysis"

'Where did the term "political science" originate?'

As an actual scientist, I call bullshit on his entire field's use of the term "science." These should be called Political Studies Departments, because I don't think what they do is actually science. I mean, I don't go around insisting I'm a biochemical artist, and if I did people would laugh at me. And I would deserve it.

"and now from mutaman giving AA unsolicited career advice."

And making the dual mistake of calling her "Anne" (there's no "e" and I believe she prefers "Althouse").

Crimso said...

"I am a weasel."

I would suggest more of a honey badger, but it's your call.

jr565 said...

as I suspected, it was the police and the capitol that determined what doors were closed. If you follow the coverage they have been doing that since day one. So, even though a building is an open building if it's determined that certain doors will be closed, then that's what happens.
It may be a question as to whether they can close doors on a public building, but it sounds like Ann walked into a door that had previously been determined (by the police and by the capitol) to be off limits to the protesters/antiprotesters. WHO THEN moved to the door they were allowed to go through. The guy Ann spoke with was simply a marshall of sorts telling fellow protesters where to go (because that is what was worked out by the cops/capitol building with the protesters)..
He may not have all the facts in play as to who is the utimate authority himself so when confronted by Ann simply capitulates. If she wants to g thorugh the door even though it's off limits let her deal with it, is what I'd imagine.
And of course I also posted links where the Capitol bulding said that certain doors were off limits throughout the week. Not sure if they were always the same door, but it was the capitol building that was determininig which doors were accessible. If Althouse or someone else were walking through the door that was determined not to be open for protesters, then I'd disagree with it.
Now, would it matter to Althouse whether the Capitol building closed the door or whether the protesters closed the door because they wanted to direct traffic? Maybe her stance is that the Capitol building can't in fact close any doors to a public building. I would disagree with that, but that would at least determine why she thought she was right.
But IF it was the capitol building that closed the door she wanted to go through and if the guy in the red vest was simply telling her where she should go because that's where it was ageed that the protesters should go, and she refused, she in fact was violating not the protesters view, but the police and capitol buildings directives. So it could be considered a matter of law breaking.
Very far down on the list of law breaking mind you. I'm not particularly outraged by it. So she went through the wrong door? Big deal. If there wasn't a cop there and she got away with it good for her. But I think she was in fact wrong to make it a moral outrage argument as if she had rights to go through any and all doors and that those going through the right door were somehow sheep.
No THEY WERE FOLLOWING DIRECTIONS.

Issob Morocco said...

Hi Meade,

Thanks for your response and comments. No I am not vilifying Harriet, just pointing out that she is not just a student who was suddenly driven to be heavily involved in such a large protest. She has done this before.

In my personal experience in both politics and Washington, D.C., I have met dozens of Harriets. They are eager to show their ability to deliver to move up the ranks.

That would explain my cynicism as to her role, which seems to change with the outlet she is involved with from student volunteer to protest organizer. Even your own video at the War Memorial shows this as they call her to come and deal with you and Ann.

As to her cause which you believe she believes in, where does she clearly state that? What caused her to stop being a student to coordinating a large protest? Was it the collective bargaining issue? Or perhaps the increased payments for healthcare or pensions? She says many words but not a lot of specifics as to what drove her to her actions. Again if you have more detail, I would be happy to hear it.

I just don't know from what I have seen, read or heard what she is against, just that she needed to protest to show democracy in action. I just see a smooth operator at work, trying to gain the audiences' confidence. Hence my con man reference, by which I stand. If you have video to the opposite, please share as I will be happy to change that opinion basis documentation.

My opinion is she is not there because of the cause on the ground but because she is part of the DNC led effort to damage the Republican brand ahead of the 2012 election.

She is certainly smart, but I don't believe she has been honest in describing herself or her role in this affair. That is why I have shown via quick research, how she is not a Wisco resident, upset with the Governor's actions but a political campaign worker, a Washington D.C. resident and a capable campaign logistics person.

jr565 said...

as for the guy in the red vest not answering questions, I agree it would have made things a lot easier if in fact he did tell Ann who directed him to not allow access to certain doors. But I would answer it a few ways. One, many people don't respond to getting yelled at. Perhaps they should have found someone with a bit more testicular fortitude to stand up to the woman getting into his face, but I think the organizers never expected anyone to question the directive that they worked out with the cops. Since everyone was at the other door and this guy was pointing people to the right door, they probably assumed that that was enough. Perhaps they were wrong.
Second and more importantly, he probably didn't know who ultimately gave the directive to move from one door to the next. That kind of info is probably above his pay grade. He was probably simply told "tell people to go to the other door and that this door is reserved for so and so". If someone then gets into his face and say "By who's authority?" in a really loud voice with a camera fiming his every word for posterity, his "Er....." might not be a sufficient answer. But as I said before, that doesn't mean that he gave the wrong answer, only that he didn't have all the details about why a door was closed absent hat it was reserved for so and so.
Note that he had his name written in on tape on his vest, which sounds pretty ad hoc to me. I wouldn't be surprised if they didn't tell him that morning "Frank (making up his name now), they're telling us to go over to this door here and that that door can't be used because it's reserved. So if anyone else comes by who is coming to protest, please direct them to the right door." And off he went to do do that, not expecting an inquisition.
You may say that's simply conjecture on my part, but since I know that in fact that Capitol had on multiple days told protesters they couldn't go into certain doors, it makes sense that when he tells Ann she cant' go into a door becusae it's reserved and 70,000 other people are at a different door, that it's probably accurate (even if he can't tell you who ultimately made the decision).
Prove ME wrong!

jr565 said...

and lastly, that does not mean I support the protesters. The capitol building can close off any doors they want. The fact that I think the protesters, in this one case, were following the police direcives and restricting their protest to the allocated doors, doesn't mean that they still arent' law breakers in other areas.

johnvert said...

Only Harriet's fellow mental midgets buy into this propaganda. The college students she brainwashes very rarely vote, so she makes very little dent. Most of the informed Wisconsin voters I saw her speak to ignored her.

jr565 said...

Althouse wrote:
I said they limited the rights of citizens who were not part of the protest. They took over the Capitol and barked orders at regular citizens. And you seem to think it doesn't matter because they shared an interest with the police in making the demonstration look good.

This may or may not be true. I think it is true, in many cases. They certainly took over the capitol building and barked orders at regular citizens (which is again, why I"m all for closing certain doors so that they cant do that to people who are simply there to work and don't wnat to have to wade through picketers just to get their jobs done). But, it's hard to know as far as directing protesters wether that was in fact the capitol building or the protesters themselves. They were probably directed to one location, and once there started barking their orders to people there. But if they hadn't been directed there they might be elsehwere. Also, it's kind of hard for the police/capitol building to distinguish between protesters and those not supporting the protesters. I would think they all would be treated the same. DIrected to one location and then let them yell and scream back and forth.
But realistically there is no way that the police could say civilians who don't support the protesters can go in through this door and protesters can go through this other door. There would be no way to check that and anyone could simply lie to get in through the door with the shorter line. THe police frankly don't care which side of the crazy line the protesters are on. All are disruptive of the people in the building trying to work.

Irene said...

Every now and then, it's good to get reminded about what "with all due respect" means.

shiloh said...

And by the way shiloh I am not a lemming.

Indeed, as inane generalizations, mine included, can get you in trouble lol.

I stand corrected as one can get called a lot of names at political blogs, or so I hear. So if you're gonna use ad hominems, try to be creative. ;)

PaulV said...

Shiloh, how much does it pained you that Lawfare failed against Palin and she became more powerful?
Sucks for you that Obama has shown his lack of experience and been an epic fail.

WV: cries Shiloh cries and whines

shiloh said...

PaulV, if you ever have a rational thought, we'll alert the media ...

Big Mike said...

Hey! You guys over in North Hall! Don't you go makin' the Professor climb over Bascom Hill to come square you around. Don't make her come over there. She'll lay a whuppin' on you.

PaulV said...

Shiloh, thanks for proving my point. You are angry because you I mock you. LOL!

HT said...

I feel like I know this Chris.

Does anyone know if he's posted here before? Often? There is something familiar about his writing.

Palladian said...

Oh good! Here's jr565 to post 50,000 more words, crammed into poorly-differentiated blocks, about how much he likes to stand in lines.

Remember the 192,938 words he wrote in favor of the TSA? The guy just loves being herded, queued, ogled and groped by authority figures. One would assume that a person with such... "predilections", would be content to indulge them in private, rather than advocate using the police powers of the government to force us all to participate in this admittedly obscure little fetish.

Now! To wait for the 37,394 word response! We're all lining up for it!

Mutaman said...

"And making the dual mistake of calling her "Anne" (there's no "e" and I believe she prefers "Althouse")."

I'll say one thing for the comentators here- they may not be too bright but you'll never slip a typo past them.

jr565 said...

Palladian wrote:

Oh good! Here's jr565 to post 50,000 more words, crammed into poorly-differentiated blocks, about how much he likes to stand in lines.

Remember the 192,938 words he wrote in favor of the TSA? The guy just loves being herded, queued, ogled and groped by authority figures. One would assume that a person with such... "predilections", would be content to indulge them in private, rather than advocate using the police powers of the government to force us all to participate in this admittedly obscure little fetish.

Hey I'm not the one standing in line at protests. I don't waste my time on that stuff.
But I don't even know where you're coming from.
Is your beef with the protesters or with the Wisconsin Capitol building? Is it with the cops? Do you refuse to stand in any lines whatsoever?

shiloh said...

If you don't like standing in lines, don't join the military ...

solo estoy diciendo

carry on

jr565 said...

And Palladian, if you are dealing with a protest of 70,000 people, there are going to be lines, or people are going to be stampeding doors and getting trampled.
The mere act of moving through a door frame would necessitate that lines were formed unless the door frame could ft 70,000 people at once.
I'm sorry your libertarianism doesn't allow for real world actualities.

Gene said...

I love Ann's defense of her rights and her impressive outrage when someone with no legal authority tries to encroach on them.

jr565 said...

Gene wrote:
I love Ann's defense of her rights and her impressive outrage when someone with no legal authority tries to encroach on them.

Is he trying to encroach on her rights or was he simply telling her the door she was going towards was not for her and to join the other protesters, as determined by the cops? Were the cops encroaching on her rights?

vnjagvet said...

No one's forcing you to hang out with us dullards, mutaman.

jr565 said...

Althouse wrote:
The inference I made in my original post was that he had no authority, that private citizens were appropriating a police role toward the public. Based on Schweber's report, I'm entertaining the possibility that the inference is that they were working with the police in a way that they didn't want to talk about.

You inference assumes that he was in fact acting as an authority or pretending to act as an authority when telling you to not go through a door. If instead he was merely relaying information to people and letting them make their own determination as to what to do with said information, then why does he have to justify the authority under which the door was or wasn't blocked since he didn't make the policy nor have any control over who heeded the policy.
Althouse should have taken her beef up with the Cops and The Wisconsin Capitol. They were the ones who blocked the door.

jr565 said...

Gene, suppose the cops say that protesters have to go to one door and that another door is to be used for workers. And suppose the protesters set up someone to meet other protesters and direct them to the right door. Can a guide who is not an authority but who is relaying policy info that was directed by that authority actually say what the policy is? Or, because he is not an official authority, is the mere telling of the "rules" invalid because he is not an offficial authority when he is saying what official policy is?
I'm wondering how someone at a protest who was teling protesters factual information, could ever not be violating Althouse's rights even though he would in fact be telling her the exact right information.

And what is your argument. Are you mad that the cops blocked the door. Are you mad that the protester guide told people that the the door was blocked, and was sufficiently vague about saying it was the cops that blocked the door? What if he doesn't adequately say who officially said the door shouldn't be accessed, but is right that the "authorities" ultimately did in fact restrict acess to the door?

jr565 said...

Althouse wrote:
I do understand that they cared about the optics and they wanted to be admired by the citizens of Wisconsin who'd have turned against them if they were too ugly or disorderly. You seem to be saying that I need to fall in line with the protest leaders to help the protest look good. No! I want to be a free citizen, independent of those people. They can do what they want within their own group, and of course, the decision to maintain order was a good one for them. But they can't absorb me into their agenda —


Even if Althouse wants to separate herself from the others and not be part of their agenda, doesn't allow her to walk through doors if the cops and or capitol restricted them to groups she is not a part of.


She didn't need to fall in line with other protesters. But is she saying that she doesn't have to obey the rules simply because the opposing side is obeying the rules?
If the rules are that you can't walk through a certain door, and those rules are set by the cops, then if you decide to not heed the rules because you want to march to your own drummer and not make the protesters look good you in fact are violating the rules set by the cops. Now you may not have to fall in line but if you don't you are not behaving lawfully.Considering the decision to maintain order was for the entire crowd be they protesters or counter protesters, was that decision not good for her too? Is she suggesting that she didn't have to be lawful in this circumstance?

jr565 said...

Althouse also wrote:
Private citizens, after secretly consulting with the police to find a way to make their protest demonstration work well, can acquire the power to restrict access to an important public building — the most important building in the state, housing all 3 branches of state government — not just for members of their own group but for anyone else who attempts to enter, and they do not even need to explain to those citizens that they have been given the authority of the police?

Why are you making it sound conspiratorial? Protesters come to the capitol building. Cops talk with leaders and tell them if they don't want to be arrested, they go through then entrances alloted to them. There's nothing sinister in that.
And did the marshall in fact have the power to restrict access and was that given to him by the police or was he merely stating that access was restricted. I notice he let you through the door. If the cops never said that the marshall could block the door then he wasn't in fact given authority to block doors and was never given police powers. And stating a policy versus enforcing a policy may be a subtle difference, but they are different.
I'm wondering if Ann thinks that it would be unconstitutional to have people in public places tell other people about policies that are in place (even if they are not in fact the authors of said policy). Like if we were running a convention at a college, and hired convetion people to direct convetion goers where to go on campus for said convention. Suppose someone asked one of those convention guides about how to get somewhere, and the guide answered "you can go through this door, but that other door is restricted for access to the convention organizers (or whatever) ". Would he be unable to tell people about that restriction because he wasn't an official member of campus police and merely a volunteer (ie a private citizen). I'm not sure if he has to respond to people who question such a restriction and question his authority. He can merely say "I told you about the restriction. If you still want to enter the door then it's on you". Since he's not authorized to enforce the policy he's not required to justify the policy either. He merely states the policy. And you can either heed it or not heed it.

Lincolntf said...

Get your shit straight, Professor Schweber, get your shit straight.

jr565 said...

I can't tell if this is the professor saying this or if ann is saying but there's this:
x- I did not mention this in the original post, but I was first told about the need to stand in line at one of the designated doors by a Capitol police officer.

Ok, so if the cop says you should stand in line at the designated door then why did you think you could go to another door, and when told that you had to go to the door with the line in it, why did you question the authority of the statement? SInce it matched the statement of the cop? Was the cop similarly wrong?

jr565 said...

again going back to the intitial statement from Althouse she seems to be arguing two things. Primarily the capitol building could not block any doors and that she didn't have to wait on line.
We now know a cop initially said to wait on line, and the professor says that the protesters were told to wait in line by the cops, so if there was a restriction of access it was by the cops and the capitol building.
And Althouse's initial statement and outrage was that she couldn't use the door that was blocked (again, by the cops not by the protesters).
She says:
If you were critical of Meade and me for refusing to wait in line and insisting on walking right into the Capitol building, then you need to read the judge's order, which says that the restriction of access "violates the State Constitution."
Who did the judge make the ruling about in the restriction of access? The Capitol buiding, not the protesters. So she is citing that ruling as proof that she can't or shouldn't be blocked from using any doors, nor that she she had to stand on line with the other protesters.



Instead of meekly following instructions — which, oddly enough, the anti-Walker protesters did — we felt immediate outrage and expressed it.
So there were instructions to follow and she ignored them. Who made such instructions? Apparently the cops did. Certainly the cops told her she had to stand in line. So it appears that she was operating under the principle that she didn't in fact have to wait on the allocated line, because she could go to any door she wanted.



I walked right up to the nearest door, and a "volunteer" in an orange vest told me to go wait in a line to go in some other door. This door was for... I didn't quite catch who the special people were who got to go right in the door I'd walked up to, but I said, "This is a public building. You're saying there are 2 kinds of people — ones that get right in and ones that go wait in line? Who are you?" He was obviously not a uniformed city official. I was all "Who are you?" and "How dare you!" and, after a few seconds, I (and Meade) got right through that door.


Notice that it only too Althouse a few seconds to get past the door, so the guy didn't actually block access. But I question the whole initial premise that it's a public building and that there can't be 2 kinds of people, ones that get right in and one's who wait in line. Does she really believe that? So, then employees shouldn't get right in or have to wait in line? Then she can't agree with the rulings that allowed for certain doors to be closed to protesters throughout the week, since if employees were let in through those doors, then they got preferential treatment (ie they didn't have to wait on lines like the protesters).The protesters worked out with cops what entrances they could go through. But if Althouse says she doesn't want to have to heed what the protesters are doing, did she similarly work out with cops what doors SHE could go through? Why would she not have to get permission to go through a door that was restricted to all but the employees (or whoever the special people were).
In other words, she is arguing that because the judge argued that the capitol building coulnd't restrict access that therefore she could walk into whtever door she wanted. The guy in the red vest is simpy a red herring. Althouse has a problem with the Capitol building and the cops, not the protesters> But since the Capitol building has been allowed to restrict access to certain doors for the entire week, her reasoning that in fact the capitol couldn't restrict access for some and not others, is incorrect.

FriedrichHayek said...

Ok, I feel the need to step in and clarify a few things. First a bit of disclosure about myself. I am a Political Science major at the University of Wisconsin, I work at the capitol in a Republican office, and I have had Professor Schweber as a teacher for two semesters, in fact I am currently taking constitutional law with him. I know that Professor Schweber would be the last one that needs people to come to his defense, and I know that he probably feels that he doesn't need defending but I feel the need. Professor Schweber is one of the finest Professor's Wisconsin has. He is in no way a part of the protests, although if you read his columns on The Huffington Post he does support them to a certain extent. For those wondering about how Professor Schweber has handled these issues in class, I believe that if you attended one of his lectures you would be pleasantly surprised. He addresses questions and legal implications in as non partisan a way as possible. Professor Schweber consistently tells his students that they don't have to buy what he's saying, they just have to understand the logic behind it, and so it should be in this case. If you're looking for political bias in the University of Wisconsin, ignore the Political Science department from my experience each professor is a professional who understands that their position is to teach and challenge students to think for themselves and not indoctrinate them. Now feel free to call me a RINO, or typical Madison student or whatever you want. I just thought that this needed to be said, and that somebody was being unjustly demeaned (won't be the first time, won't be the last).

FriedrichHayek said...

Also, I am not implying that there is no political bias among Professors at the University. Go to the Sociology department and you'll see Professors cheering on and actively participating in the protests, my sociology discussion (a class which I am unfortunately required to take) devolved into an indoctrination about how bad Republicans are (which is also the overall tone of the class, if I had to sum it up in one sentence "everything the right does is coded racism"). There are much better targets to go after as examples of unprofessional Professors that Schweber and it's not really that hard to figure out who they are.

Reagan said...

I don't know where Schweber gets off.

Prof. Althouse's temporary loss of freedom to enter the public building without waiting in line may be the biggest affront to liberty since the civil rights era. I mean, she had to tell the guy she had a right to enter, and then he let her in. That had to be really emotional.

I hope she not only files an open-records request with the Capitol police to find out what sort of Communist plans they were hatching to make people wait in line, but also files a class action section 1983 claim on behalf of all others who were kept from entering the Wisconsin Capitol for a few minutes.

Why stop there? The Madison MTU routinely allows handicapped folks to enter the bus ahead of everyone else AND sit in the front! A lot of handicapped people are liberals who use the system to get benefits. None of us should have to wait behind anyone!!! If you add up the seconds of liberty that are collectively being drained from the freedom fighters, we are getting screwed.

shiloh said...

Friedrich Hayek

Every so often, AA needs a foil, legitimate or imaginary to make her blog more interesting.

As C4 mentioned: This is a very long and boring post, and it's hard to tell if you "ie AA" have a point.

Palladian said...

"Now feel free to call me a RINO, or typical Madison student or whatever you want."

You're a RINO, a typical Madison student and a gibbering pile of Hamburger Helper.

There.

Hey, you gave permission!

The issue here, "FH" (sorry, I can't bring myself to address anyone as Friedrich Hayek other than... Friedrich Hayek), is not whether Professor Schweber is a good, thoughtful professor. The issue is to rebut the specific points he made in an email to Professor Althouse. You see, people who are fine professors and good people are also capable of making specious, flawed arguments and statements. Althouse doesn't seem to be impugning his goodness, but instead critiquing his argument (such as it is). There's a difference.

Palladian said...

"Every so often, AA needs a foil, legitimate or imaginary to make her blog more interesting."

Every so often, people like you need a foil, right in the backside.

jr565 said...

Althouse wrote:
Assuming the police set up the policy in collusion with the protesters, it was designed to facilitate one viewpoint.


Oh brother. Now we're arguing libertarian individualism in the midst of a collective protest. THe only viewpoint that the police were facilitating was that "protesters" were to go through two doors, and that they couldn't go through the third. With 70,000 people all coming to the capitol how many view points are the police supposed to accomodate when they are dealing with two doors to allow access. And the police in fact were accomodating protesters and counterprotesters, all of whom had to go through the same two doors. THe counterprotesters didn't have to come up with some separate arrangement,and I don't think that the capitol nor the police really cared what viewpoint you were arguing, they simply wanted to make sure that any protests going on were not violent or didn't degenerate into lawlessness or cause hardship for the people in the building trying to work.
And considering Meade and Althouse didn't in fact work out an arrangement to facilitate their viewpoint, why should their viewpoint have been accomodated? Especially if it allowed them to walk through the very door that 70,000 other people couldn't go through?

James said...

jr565, since you have a Blogger account the next step is to start your own blog. It certainly would be a cure for insomnia.

Brevity is the soul of wit.

Ann Althouse said...

"I can't tell if this is the professor saying this or if ann is saying but there's this:"

Oh, bullshit, if you don't understand that the indented material is Schweber's, you can't possibly read this post. Obviously the line you quote and try to attribute to me is Schweber's! It's blatantly inconsistent with the story I've been telling all along, which you, collection of unmemorable letters, have been misstating over and over. Get your shit together or I'm going to delete you. I question your good faith as a commenter here. You are wasting our time!

Daniel in Brookline said...

- Words like "hearsay" are not appropriate outside a courtroom.

Wow. Are these the words of a First Amendment advocate? Telling me which words are and are not appropriate for public use? And why does he get to choose what I cannot say?

We seem to have a standard in this country, that Free Speech can be restricted, very specifically, in cases where the vast majority of the population agrees that a word, or a phrase, can only be used in an incendiary fashion. (The so-called "N word" comes to mind, as does the "F-word".)

If we start adding such inflammatory words as "hearsay" to the list, what's next? Naugahyde?

Ann Althouse said...

"Prof. Althouse's temporary loss of freedom to enter the public building without waiting in line may be the biggest affront to liberty since the civil rights era. I mean, she had to tell the guy she had a right to enter, and then he let her in. That had to be really emotional."

Yes, I got in, but the system remained in place to be inflicted on the next person.

More importantly, these relatively modest restraints on liberty matter in America, where we cry foul at the first impingement, the first abuse of power. That's what it means to have rights, as opposed to patiently accepting it when the govt and it's private enforcers mistreat you, but not that much. I am setting an example of what it means to be American.

As for the Civil Rights era, maybe you would have been one of those people saying what's the big deal having to move to the back of the bus. You're still on the bus. You'll get where you're going. It's a minor inconvenience.

Crimso said...

"I'll say one thing for the comentators here- they may not be too bright but you'll never slip a typo past them."

Pleaze dont fuk it upp agin, Metaman. Its hard enuf fur thoz of us what arnt to brite to unnerstand wot yur tryin to tel us wifout u speling stuf wrongg.

And remember, it's Althouse, with an "e."

kent said...

The only logical step remaining for Jr, at this point, is to leave a boiled bunny rabbit atop the Professor's stove.

Reagan said...

Prof. Althouse: "Yes, I got in, but the system remained in place to be inflicted on the next person.

More importantly, these relatively modest restraints on liberty matter in America, where we cry foul at the first impingement, the first abuse of power. That's what it means to have rights, as opposed to patiently accepting it when the govt and it's private enforcers mistreat you, but not that much. I am setting an example of what it means to be American.

As for the Civil Rights era, maybe you would have been one of those people saying what's the big deal having to move to the back of the bus. You're still on the bus. You'll get where you're going. It's a minor inconvenience."

Professor, I don't get where you are calling this a minor inconvenience? If waiting in line is being INFLICTED on other freedom-loving Americans, how can that be minor? I mean, I appreciate the fact that you understand you are the new Rosa Parks of folks who insist on immediately getting into a building during a giant protest. It seems you might even be agreeing with me that you should not have to wait for the handicapped, particular the liberal handicapped, to get on the bus first. I do hope you do your open-records request, it could be interesting to see how it works out. I mean, perhaps the Capitol Police even asked some folks to help out in getting people into the building in an orderly fashion. How in the hell is that consistent with the concept of ordered liberty?

Your willingness to set an example of what it is like to be American, which is: not being willing to wait in line during a massive protest to get into the center of the protest, is one that perhaps should be symbolized on a flag of some sort, perhaps a modified Gadsen flag with the snake slithering under a door?

jr565 said...

Ann Althouse wrote:
es, I got in, but the system remained in place to be inflicted on the next person.

So then your issue in fact is with the capitol daring to close off any doors, even though they did so for days. So even though it was the authority that was setting said rules, you questioned that authority as well. Apparently closing any door and forcing anyone to stand in line, despite the fact that 70,000 people are at the capitol building and potentially disrupting business the capitol building cannot direct traffic in any way.
And you are questiong the lawlessness of the protesters, why again/

jr565 said...

And back to the inconsistency of what althouse is in fact arguing,she said:
Well, that refers to Friday, meaning today. I'm talking about events that occurred last weekend!

"Employees who display their ID's may enter at the MLK entrance". This is most likely what they were told by the administration."

Obviously, you're not from Madison. I was at the King Street entrance, not the MLK entrance. These are 2 completely different streets downtown.

Man, start over. You are so far off!

Except you in fact are arguing that the capitol could not block any doors, so why would it matter what they did Friday or monday or sunday. The fact that they blocked the Kings Entrance or the MLK entrance on monday tuesday wednesday thursday or friday is rrelevant to the fact that whatever door they locked would be an instance of "system remaining in place to be inflicted on the next person."
Sorry, but I can't see find the fact that the Capitol building restricted access and limited protesters to go into specific doors (even if that protester was named Ann Althouse) to be all that tragic. Considering the amount of damage the protesters inflicted on the building and considering how they set up shop inside, perhaps a bit more restriction would have been warranted.

Hattie said...

I just stumbled across this thread, and would like to make a open invitation (particularly to Issob Morocco). I am Harriet, and I would love to talk to you about your impression of the protests, and organizers like myself. As I can see, you know where to find me on facebook. If you're interested in talking more extensively please facebook message me, I would be more than willing to meet and talk.