Put the punks on the hay baler!

That ain’t workin’, that’s the way you do it 
Money for nothin’ and your chicks for free — Dire Straits 

The last thrilling installment of your favorite blogge explored the beatdown of a graduate student near the University of Wisconsin campus here in Madison. Four young men, one only 15 years old, set upon the lone student walking home after nightfall. At random. Not to rob their victim, but to inflict pain, to strike fear. For kicks.

It occurred to the old farm boy who runs this news and opinion stand that the four punks could stand some time making hay. This fine day in June is the day for it: temperatures over 90 degrees F. A tour of the countryside Sunday between Baraboo and Waunakee shows that the first crop of alfalfa, timothy, and clover is cut and curing in abundant sunshine. Ready for the baler.

Not today’s big-bale machines but the old baler that spit out rectangles weighing a good 50 pounds each, scratchy deadweights that need to be stacked well above head high on the wagon using the armstrong method, as we called it. Properly herringboned to secure the bales lest the whole load go tumbling at the turn.

Take the full wagon to the hay barn, where more fun awaits. Disassemble the load by hand, bale by bale, for the ride up the flatbed elevator into the hay mow where another crew lays down rows of bales that will nourish the herd come winter. You’re done for the day only when the sun goes down and your cotton tee shirt is soaking wet.

Now THAT is satisfaction!

Instead, the four young thugs will be given “restorative justice,” whatever that is. Re-educated bureaucrats will apologize for systemic oppression. An ankle bracelet will be fitted if prosecution is not deferred altogether. Rinse & Repeat.

More Free Stuff! 

Instead of making hay, the City of Madison is midwifing another giveaway program. Five Benjamins a month for 155 lucky — strike that — UN-lucky families. No work, no strings attached, no baling hay. (Read & weep.) Spend it as you like — even a little blow. Who(m) are we to judge? Call it “restorative economics.” The progressive wet dream of a guaranteed income! Because poverty is the fault of the privileged. Not, as a black delegate to the 1988 Republican convention once told this scribbler, because “poor people have poor ways.” So judgmental!

If guilt-ridden progressives truly wanted to help the poor, they’d give them a year’s subscription to the Wall Street Journal. In today’s edition, U.S. Rick Scott (R-FL) promotes legislation that would require recipients of federally subsidized housing to get a job. The senator writes:

The American dream is rooted in a simple principle: If you’re willing to work hard, anything is possible. … For our country to thrive, we can’t let their toxic plan of increased handouts and getting something for nothing continue. We need to value showing up and going to work. … A job brings income, independence, and security.

The Werkes adds two more benefits: a job brings self-respect and consideration for others.

Thank the sweet baby Jesus there’s no tax money involved — up front, anyways. But taxpayers will pay the price on the back end for more policing. Who are these guilty philanthropists, intent on entitling more societal dysfunction? Deepening dependence on the hand out? With employers crying for workers!

Blaska’s Bottom Line: You can bet the four cowards who beat the hard-working grad student had not put in a day on the hay wagon.

How do YOU make hay?

About David Blaska

Madison WI
This entry was posted in Crime, Uncategorized and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

34 Responses to Put the punks on the hay baler!

  1. Kevin S Wymore says:

    It occurs to me that the younger generation might benefit from introduction to the Armstrong Method. Good one, David! A close second in the School of Hard Knocks for Young People is detasseling corn, which is similarly endeavor featuring sunup to sun at its most punishing.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. mapkp says:

    I’m sure you’ve already seen this, Dave, but in case not:


  3. David Gerard says:

    “The progressive wet dream of a guaranteed income!” Not exactly.

    It would take me forty pages to outline Milton Friedmann’s ideas in support of a guaranteed income. I’ll refer you to two of his books – Capitalism and Freedom and Free to Choose.

    Other conservatives in favor of a guaranteed income – Donald Rumsfield, Dick Cheney, Richard Nixon, Henry Paulsen, George Schultz and Martin Stuart Feldstein (and that’s a short list).


  4. One eye says:

    re: giveaway, if it’s Jack Dorsey’s money I don’t care so much. Problem is we all know it will be judged a rousing success no matter what happens. Suggest the Mayor asks DB to participate in judging results. How exactly will that be done?

    re: the beatdown, the Asian student union should demand the dissolution of the Badger football team. Is there not a more blatant example of black supremacy and Asian discrimination?

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Bill Cleary says:

    Washing dishes, scrubbing floors, busing tables are also a great way to learn how to work. During my younger days, many nights in a hot kitchen. That in addition to bailing hay, putting it up in the barn, milking cows, cleaning the barn floor after milking does help to shape the character of anyone.

    I would also like to put a shout out to mapkp for the bariweiss substack on how to be a pioneer. That was truly a great read and it should be required reading for all Americans. It is a story on how America was made. Hard work, determination, faith in God above.

    mapkp, thank you for bringing this to our attention.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Bob says:

    As the program will start out as private money it will transition to tax payer money. City residents will see a new charge on their water bill right under the recycling fee(tax). We will be told we need this program to help the needy while more HELP WANTED signs on more businesses.

    I started working at 12 at the family construction business (when not in school). Social Security records show I had an income from that year. Not a farm kid but have done farm, construction, food service and repair/ maintenance work my whole life. I worked and payed my way thru tech school. My only time I was unemployed was when I was looking for a different job. I know young people on the same course I’ve lived and others that think they deserve something for nothing. Strange new world.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Alan Potkin says:

    The hay baling idea seems great, but only given that those demonic psychopathic perps would certainly require one or two fulltime guards on horseback with shotguns to keep things under control (like in Cool Hand Luke?) Also, now that you tell us that you’re carrying, whenever you go into Mad Town, or at least at night or into the iffy parts. Let’s say your feel compelled to pop off a few rounds into your likely POC attackers…maybe killing on or two of them, maybe not. How do you think you’d be treated by law enforcement and the courts in a venue where our moral and intellectual betters are still totally in command?

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Gary L. Kriewald says:

    Your paean to hay baling brought back long-ago memories of helping my uncle and cousins on their dairy farm near Wisconsin Rapids in the the good ol’ summertime of the 1950s when I was around ten or eleven. I wasn’t very good at it but it certainly offered a clear and unwavering definition of hard work–and its rewards. One was an increase in appetite (needed to consume the heaping servings of pork roast, sauerkraut, dumplings–German style, the size of a softball–and veggies fresh from the garden my aunt had waiting for us on our return from the field.); the other was the ability to fall asleep as soon as my head hit the pillow at night.

    The last I heard about the assault on the Asian doctoral student, the local authorities were still dithering as to whether to classify it as a hate crime. If the little thugs had been white, the decision would have been made in a flash. One little detail one seldom hears amidst all the hand-wringing about the supposed spike in anti-Asian violence is that the vast majority of the perpetrators are young black men … just like the ones in Madison.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Rollie says:

    Even though I’m called a progressive, I’m definitely in favor of good hard work and wouldn’t object to work being incorporated into punishment.

    Rather than universal income, I support universal work. Not just for the children of the poor, but for all of us. Rotate all of us through the essential jobs, have a real random selection process, force all of us to put in a minimum level of work for a modest but decent standard of living for all. Let us do what we wish with the remaining time we have – start businesses, practice crafts, or nothing at all. Then we’d have a real basis for a free market economy that exists along side our essential economy. There’d be little need to regulate the free market because we’d all actually be free to enter it if and how we wish. And we’d decide on what constitutes the essential economy democratically.

    I urge conservatives who value work to take a hard look at the financial services sector of our economy. If the Republican Party could begin to try and shift the balance of power towards those that perform productive work and away from those that move money around they might find a convert in me. Until then all this talk of work rings hollow to me.

    There’s something wrong when those that finance work make more than those that do work. This is an obvious fact that anyone sitting at a bus stop could tell you right now. And we wonder why the poor don’t value hard work? They’re smarter than we give credit for – they know the way to get rich isn’t to work, it’s to scam (meaning put yourself in a position such that you get money from other people’s actions, ie have your money make money).

    Conservatives try to get the rich out of having to work, Liberals try to get the poor and the rich out having to work, Progressives try to put all of us to work. No wonder it’s unpopular 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Kooter says:

    Rollie, so what you’re saying is a successful business owner doesnt work and just sponges off his employees?


    • Rollie says:

      Every situation is unique and it’s always a matter of degree. Some people own businesses and are working along with everyone else, some own businesses and sit on beaches. No need to overthink things, it’s usually pretty clear to workers who’s useful and who’s not in any business.

      If someone is rich, it’s almost guaranteed that they became so NOT via work (there are exceptions). Let’s say rich means having over $5 million and someone has a working life of 50 years (kind of long, but easier math). You’d have to earn an extra $100,000 a year beyond what you spend to live on to hit that mark by the time you retire. How many jobs net that kind of dough? Not many that don’t skim off lower tier workers’ efforts too. If it’s just your own work, you’d have to be billing at least $72 per hour, conservatively ($50k to live on, $100k to save, 40 hours a week, 52 weeks per year for 50 years – no account for materials, taxes, overhead, sick days, etc.). And even then you only get rich by the time you’re just about dead, and you have lived a relatively frugal life. Some people have the skills to demand that range of pay, but not many (any?) are getting actually RICH only off of their own work.

      But what about compound interest and investments? There again, that’s money made on other peoples’ productivity, not your own. That’s not your work. People act like that’s free money – there’s no free anything, people work so you can skim that interest.

      I’m not saying owners are evil or that they are my enemy they should be killed. They’re just playing the game as it is. I’m just pointing out facts that lead me to believe that we should restructure the game (our economy) to reward work at least as much as ownership or positionality.


      • Kooter says:

        Put down the Nintendo and step outside, Rollie. Start a business and discover its way more work than making widgets on some line. Honestly, for as verbose as your posts are, you’re pretty clueless to the real world.


        • Rollie says:

          I’m not a kid in my parents’ basement, I’m a grown adult who’s worked 30 years since I was 15 in a half dozen industries. Try engaging on the merits of my statements and observations. I’ve been called verbose quite a bit here, too bad thinking takes words. So thoughts that take more than a tweet are too much now? Am I breaking the new-speak protocol? Grunt, grunt, catchphrase…

          Which of us is clueless? It’s a fact that in the “real world” you claim to understand so well there are people who get rich without working. I’m amazed when working people knee-jerk defend no-work schemes; I have to assume that they themselves distain productive work enough that they dream of getting in on a scam themselves.

          “Start a business and discover its way more work than making widgets on some line.” Oh, is it? Sitting in air conditioning having meetings is way more work than standing in sweltering heat keeping machines running? Don’t demean the contribution of workers. If those widget-makers weren’t essential to the business they wouldn’t have been hired.

          Keep up the good propaganda on behalf of the “finance industry” and pretend it’s the only the poor who don’t have work ethic. Yeah, right, the rich work thousands of times harder and “smarter” than carpenters or widget-makers. The money lenders have been at it for centuries; you may have heard of one of their famous critics…


        • Cornelius_Gotchberg says:

          “too bad thinking takes words.”

          Actually…it doesn’t? Expressing thoughts? Perhaps.

          The Gotch reads your posts with great interest and an open mind, Rollie; that go in the plus column…?

          The Gotch


  11. Madtownforsure says:

    I did that, the money I received for 3 days work went to buy books at local high school. Was 15 yo. And, yes I had a probation officer too that scared me straight. No milk and cookies to go back on the street to repeat repeat like today.


    • Madtownforsure says:

      That was entry into 9th grade, in 11th grade I got on a bus to end of route on fish hatch rf, walked to resturant on beltline, washed dishes from 4 pm to 10 pm. Repeat on sat. Am from 6 to 2 pm. 17 then.
      Now 76 and still love to do as much as I can body permitting. Its called work ethics, not taught by any teachers except maybe some jocks today. Pathetic schools today. Can see it everywhere.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Cornelius_Gotchberg says:

        The Gotch loaded-n-emptied many a Hobart in his day at the old Frenchy’s in Middleton; both it and the 3302 University Avenue location, under the ownership of the late Tony Plescia, burned down under…um…suspicious circumstances.

        Bussed many a table at the old Cuba Club and Hilldale Pancake House, for $1.45/hour if memory serves.

        The Gotch

        Liked by 1 person

        • bBalboa says:

          Not Dead yet, the pipers are calling though. Detassled corn 3 summers, busboy and dishwasher hill top inn, movie rental store, lifeguarded, taught swim lessons, all to stay out of trouble and to be able to save and buy things I wanted or needed. in the immortal words of george thorogood, “get a haircut and get a real job!”

          Liked by 1 person

        • Cornelius_Gotchberg says:

          The Hill Top on the County P ridge in Cross Plains? The Gotch ate there any number of time back in the day.

          Matter-a-fact, the Rodenschmidts, just north on County P and at the end of Stagecoach Road, were clients for a time.

          Not sure what to say, Balboa, but have certainly enjoyed the back-n-forth and your unique take, and will miss both going forward.

          The Gotch


  12. Cornelius_Gotchberg says:

    Could it be that you RAYcists aren’t aware that principles of success like hard work, delayed gratification, self-discipline, respect for self and others, rational thinking, education, etc., are merely tools of a RAYcist Patriarchal Cabal designed to promote intersectional systemic institutional fragility…?

    The Smithsonian sure thought so…until (heh!) the fact-based Reality b!tchslapped ’em into the nose-bleed seats.

    Ah Lefty; so MUCH crushing ignominy, so little time!

    The Gotch

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Scott F says:

    “ You’re done for the day only when the sun goes down and your cotton tee shirt is soaking wet.” And the sharp little bits of straw have worked their way down into your underwear…. Add in a few summers of landscaping work where the mornings after it takes you 10-15 minutes to get your fingers to open and close properly. Character building 101…..


    • Madtownforsure says:

      At over 75 my fingers are extremely sore from all those years of using my hands. Ones who make a living on a keyboard try to thru do it yourself, but we all know those are a desaster in the making.


  14. madtownforsure says:

    You know the crime is really out of control when you see the news on the local media outlets. POLICE WORRIED ABOUT THE CRIME OF STOLEN CARS, AND WEAPONS. Oh, wait, didn’t mention all of the weapon violations. (“Weapon violations” sure cleans the crimes up). They must have read the police chief’s blog for the over 4000 reports for the period June 17-19th. No names given of course. No punishment given of course. Out of control much? Cars that have a way to start the car without a key is great. And, seeing this is 14 thru 17 yr old’s some of these cars especially the newer ones may even steer themselves. Big advantage for these kids who never got the training behind the wheel. Win win. Lose lose are the owners of course, but hell, the media could care less about a single working mom that needs her car TO WORK. Something most of the joy riders may never do as long as we supply them milk and cookies when caught, turned around in front of the cell only to go back out and play.


  15. Kooter says:

    Rollie, word salad does not imply intelligence, editing to a succinct point does. Your comments imply you do not/have not owned a business so you really are clueless about the mental and emotional (and often physical) work involved. I’m not saying working a line is easy– quite the contrary; however discounting the work of a business owner or a financial sector worker or implying “most rich people don’t work” is just plain ignorant.


    • Rollie says:

      I never said rich people don’t work, I said they don’t get rich through their own work. Most of the get-rich tactics I know of involve making money off other peoples’ work.

      Atlas Shrugged is fiction. Our Titans of Industry would be hapless without their army of workers and preference under the law – they would never be competent to secede and live on their own. Now trades-persons, farmers, mechanics, engineers, etc.? Yes, they indeed could secede and live without the rest of us (including the ones that own their own small businesses, they are not what I’m calling rich). If you were stranded in the wilderness, would you rather be with Warren Buffet or the roofer down the street? (Not fair, Buffet is pretty old but you get the point 🙂

      I’m just advocating that work should be more profitable than not-work. Is that so crazy?


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