UWL Progressives

The Progressives bring together progressive thinking individuals to encourage democracy, ecological wisdom, social justice, non-violence, global awareness, post patriarchal values, respect for diversity and personal as well as social responsibility. The group focuses on actions to promote and raise awareness of these issues.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

‘Greens’ shiver for a passion / PSC

By REID MAGNEY | La Crosse Tribune

Is recycling sexy? How about organic food and hybrid cars?

Progressives at University of Wisconsin-La Crosse think so, and they’ve produced a “Green Is Sexy” calendar to buff the image of environmentalists. It features 12 pictures of students in various states of undress promoting green causes and products.

“Whether you call yourself a green, an environmentalist, a conservationist, an ecologist, a tree hugger, a dirt-worshiper, or a simple friend of the earth, you are sexy,” said Kristen Pitts, who helped put the calendar together.

Greens get unfairly cast as “eco-terrorists or crazies,” Pitts said. The calendar shows “we know how to have fun.”

Though the calendar’s theme is Green, several models may have turned blue during photo shoots. Six of the photos were taken outdoors in mid-November, and “every shot was cold,” Pitts said.

For the cover photo, which promotes alternative transportation, 18 students wearing only socks and shoes posed with bicycles from UW-L’s Green Bikes service.

Pitts said the coldest photo shoot was in the La Crosse Marsh, where they portaged a canoe so three women and one man could paddle naked. There was ice on the marsh that day, so the picture was digitally altered to put the canoe in a more summer-like scene, she said.

Indoor photos promote water conservation (“shower together”), eating low on the food chain (five naked co-eds eating a vegetarian Thanksgiving dinner) and education (20 naked people in a classroom).

Photographer Daniel Durtsche took all the pictures and managed to pose the models so most of their privates are strategically covered. Joe Gullo handled publishing.

“We’re all graduating this year,” Pitts said. “Hopefully, someone will pick it up and do it next year.”

Proceeds from calendar sales will be divided three ways between Campus Progressives, the UW-L Environmental Council and The Second Supper, a campus humor magazine published by Gullo.

The group also got sponsorships from Organic Valley, Popcorn Tavern, Simply Living and the People’s Food Co-op, Pitts said. They printed 250 copies to start and will order more if sales warrant.

The calendar is dedicated to Professor Kenn Maly, who is retiring from the philosophy department. Pitts said Maly, who also is the director of environmental studies, is an example of how one person can make a difference in the world.

PSC allows Xcel to increase rates

By STEVE CAHALAN | La Crosse Tribune

Xcel Energy will be allowed to raise electric and natural gas base rates in January, but less than the company had requested, officials said Thursday.

The Public Service Commission of Wisconsin on Thursday verbally approved an 11 percent increase in overall electric rates, and a 2.5 percent increase in overall natural gas rates.

The PSC said it trimmed the company’s electric request by about 4 percent and its natural gas request by 2.5 percent.

Under the PSC decision, an Xcel residential customer using 750 kilowatt hours a month will see a monthly increase of $8.50 for electric service, the company said. A residential customer using 65 therms per month will see a monthly increase of $2.25 for natural gas service.

Xcel said the new base rates are expected to take effect in mid-January, after the commission issues a written order to finalize the rates.

The utility said the increase in base rates is needed for major electric and natural gas system improvements for its growing customer base in Wisconsin, and also to cover higher costs for purchased power and fuel. It said the approval marks the first time since 1998 that Xcel has increased base rates for capital and operating expenses, other than periodic changes for the cost of fuel.

The company said when the new rates are finalized, its residential electric and natural gas customers will continue to have the lowest rates of all major utilities in Wisconsin.

“We’ve worked really hard keeping our rates low through efficiencies and minimizing expenses,” Xcel spokesman Brian Elwood said.

Charlie Higley, executive director of the Citizens Utility Board consumer watchdog group in Wisconsin, said he is glad the commission approved smaller rate increases than Xcel had sought. “But given high energy prices, we feel the commission should do far more to reduce utility profit levels and take other steps to lower rates for consumers,” he said.

“The commission, not only in this decision but with other utilities, has made movements in the right direction toward more reasonable rates, but more is needed,” Higley said.

In its decision, the commission set a return on equity for Xcel shareholders of 11 percent, down from the current 11.9 percent. It also decided to require quicker rate reductions when natural gas market prices go down.

Xcel filed its application for a rate increase in June and updated its request in August and December.

Sunday, December 18, 2005


Hey Everyone,

Sorry about so many e-mails about this darn calendar, but this is the latest for those of you whom want a calendar or ten...

Joe Gullo has been working on the layout of this calendar and I went and checked it out yesterday and it looks absolutely, positively amazing. Dan Durtsche, our photographer, took some fabulous pictures and seriously, it looks so good and so tasteful and so professional! Joe's taking this to the printers tomorrow (Monday) and will most likely have these things out and ready for you all by Wednesday at the latest.

I plan on being in Cartwright for most of the day on Wednesday to be available for people to pick up and pay for their calendars. Again, they are $10 and checks can be made to UWL Progressives. I know a lot of you may be leaving for the semester break before that so if you want to make special arrangements to pay/send/pick-up the calendars, let me know...at 608 385 9540 or e-mail at pitts.kris@students.uwlax.edu.

If you haven't put in your request for a calendar and would like one, just let me know how many you'd like. If you have any questions, you know how to reach me.


Kristen Pitts

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

COAL this Christmas

Want to mail Republicans a lump of Coal for X-mas? I thought that might get your attention...

The Progressives will be sponsoring a table on Wednesday (tomorrow) in Cartwright Center from 9:30 - 3:30. We will be lobbying State Senator Kapanke to support a more environmentally friendly version of the State-wide Energy Bill. We need lots of support from you and other members of the group to help gather support, and make a good showing for local TV, Radio, and Newspapers. This should be really fun, and will be one of the last group events of the semester. Please help make sure the semester ends with a bang by showing up to help out! Details below...

Wisconsin deserves a clean environment for Christmas, not a lump of coal!

Good Legislators will protect Wisconsin's Environment.
Naughty Legislators get COAL in their stockings.

The State Legislature recently introduced a new energy bill for Wisconsin. The Bill has some good portions but has four sections which could be potentially disastrous for Wisconsin's environment. We call these secti ons the "FOUR POISON PILLS." Students will have the opportunity to write letters, email, or call Senator Kapanke asking him to remove the Four Poison Pills from the Energy Bill.

We will be mailing Kapanke lumps of coal to let him know that good legislators end up on the "Nice List" by supporting our environment. Legislators who don't support the environment end up on the "Naught y List" and get coal for X-mas.


Ryan Schryver

PS. Good luck on finals and have a great J-Term!

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Get Your Calendars!

So you may have heard of the new 'Green is Sexy' calendar...this is an effort by Environmental Council and UWL Progressives to let people know about regular environmental actions they can do in their daily lives to be a more responsible citizen. The basis behind this is showing that everyday environmental actions have an impact and are easy to do. How we are posing our monthly scenes is similar to calendars you may have seen before in floral shops and the like. The scenes will be of students, in their birthday suits, doing environmentally-friendly actions with strategically placed items to cover themselves. The photography, coordinating, editing and modeling of this calendar was all done by students and they have been doing an exceptional job with some really great scenes.

These calendars will be in print as soon as next week and I would like to get an idea of how many to print in our first batch of printing. So if you are seriously interested in buying one, two, or ten, please let me know. The calendar price will be $10 and the profits will go to benefit both Environmental Council and UWL Progressives. I will be taking orders by simply getting a name, number of copies and contact (phone preferably).

This will greatly help the printing process, so please let me know if you are interested!



Wednesday, December 07, 2005

neo-cons and long johns

Musical Perfromance
The meeting started off with a wonderful performance of the pigtails for peace song performed by Erin, Jill, and Julie. Thank you ladies for the excellent song

Troop Withdrawl
There are amendments being made to the troop withdrawl referendum question that we all worked so hard to get on the ballot. If you collected signatures for this petition you MUST sign a form to support the amendments being made in order for your collected signatures to be valid. If you were not at the meeting and collected signatures PLEASE make sure you sign this form. If you need this form see Jessica Thill by t his FRIDAY! Her office is located in the upward bound office in Murphy Library. Not sure if you collected signatures for this petition? Jeremy has a list of names, contact him at jansen.jere@students.uwlax.edu to check it out.

SOA Education
TONIGHT at 7pm in 332 CC! If you went to the SOA protest or are looking for more information about SOA please come to this education event and discussion. Share your experiences and get your questions answered. This is a great thing for everyone to be aware of, so tell everyone you know to go!

Department of Peace
A department of peace is trying to be created at the cabinet level, you should all know about this by now...2 of our WI congress representatives have signed on with this new department, but Ron Kind has not. We need to start putting pressure on him during holiday season of peace to remind him that if he is supporting war, he should be counter balancing this with supporting peace. Ryan had some beautiful christmas cards at the meeting that we signed and sent to Ron Kind's home to remind him that all we want for chirstmas this year is peace. We are encouraging you to send him a letter, card, or what have you to his home Ron Kind 205 5th Ave. S Suite 226, La Crosse WI 54601 and remind him what this time of year is all about and encourage him to support the creation of a department of peace.

Bell Ringing
If you signed up to be a bell ringer for the salvation army at Skogans, look for an e-mail from J ill so you know when you are signed up and when you need to ring those little bells!

Wal-Mart: The high cost of low prices
Kevin is looking for some help. He has reserved a table at CC TOMORROW (thursday) from 9-3. He will be showing the dvd and will also be selling anti-wal mart buttons. We passed a sign up sheet around at the meeting, but if you werent there and can stop by the table anytime between 9-3 Kevin would greatly appreciate it! Also if you have a Santa Suit or know where to get one...let Kevin know!

Sexy to be Green
Last Calendar shoot! This Friday from 12-245! Pitts will be sending out an e-mail later with the location to meet. Calendars will be printed next week if we can fin ish this last shoot friday and when they are complete, you can purchase them for $10

Peacemaker Kidnapping
Christian Peacemakers in Iraq were kidnapped and are facing execution, but because the US has a policy that we do not negotiate with terrorists, we are doing nothing to help these peacemakers! there is an on-line petition, if you want to know more or you want to make your opinion heard go to http://www.freethecpt.org

Taxpayer Bill of Rights...this is a proposal to freeze property taxes exactly how they are, no consideration for inflation...This would greatly affect our social services such as education system, trash system, police, firefighters, and all other services payed for by property taxes. Colo rado had tried this a few years ago and it did not work at all, it was horrible and they even had inflation taken into consideration. They have decided to abolish it all together. on Dec 8th from 630-730 there will be a discussion about TABOR in WI...it will be at the Acedemic Resource Center in room 200 A & B at WWTC (7th street)

Health Care Forum
Also on Dec 8th frm 530-7 there will be a forum on health care issues, if you are interested it will be at the La Crosse Health and Science Consortium on 1300 badger st in suite 3065

The first earthday meeting was last night after the progressives meeting. If you have any ideas about earthday this year, or have feedback from last years earthday contact Kristen Pitts. pitts.kris@students.uwlax.edu

Note from Guy Wolfe...Clean up your facebook profile! If you are underage, remove pictures of you drinking, remove pictures of other illegal activities and remove groups that would associate you with such activities...students are being prosecuted and ticketed for the contents of their facebook profiles...

Snapshots with Santa
On thursday, the study day, there will be the second annual snapshots with santa program in cc. you can pay $1 to have your pictures taken with santa and the money goes to benefit the new horizons womans shelter...it was amazing last year, so try to go this year! moms l ove that kind of stuff...and its only a dollar and its going to a good cause!

This Friday night at 1104 State St. (Schryvers house) There will be a $5 donation asked for to consume fermented adult beverages. This was going to be a theme party, some possible themes discussed included: ugly christmas sweaters, long underwear, dickies, neo-con, and inside out...we concluded this discussion with a decision...it is a create your own theme party and the person with the best theme will win a door prize...come on over on friday night, a good time will surely be had by all

Monday, December 05, 2005


Today, the Senate Judiciary Committee approved the constitutional ban on civil unions and marriage on a 3-2 vote. The two Democrats, Senators Tim Carpenter and Fred Risser, voted against it.
The full Senate could still vote as soon as tomorrow. If you haven't yet, please ask your lawmakers to vote "No on the Amendment":
Supporters of the ban are turning out hundreds of phone calls and emails to the Capitol.
It's our last chance to pump up the pressure on the state Senate.
Now more than ever, we need to ask our friends and family to contact lawmakers too. Please send them this link: http://www.actionwisconsin.org/voteno

Sunday, December 04, 2005


Hi there all you fellow progressively-minded people,

Your help is needed!

Tomorrow (Monday) at 7:00 AM at the clocktower. We will be putting up posters and crosses to educate people about the School of the Americas. This is also to promote the SOA Education and Discussion night on Wednesday night. Come early tomorrow morning to get some free food.

Tuesday, All day at the clocktower we want people to be handing out literature with SOA info and answering questions anyone might have. This will probably be our last clocktower day of the semester... don't miss it, they're always a good time.

Wednesday at 7:00 PM in 332 Cartwright: SOA Education and Discussion Night. This event is intended ;both for people that know a lot about the issue and those who know nothing. We want there to be a large number who went to the protest to come and share their experiences and thoughts. Please find the time to come!

Feel free to email me with any questions. All of your help will be greatly appreciated.

Thanks, Jill Hayes

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Get on the Love Train

What is the love train? Imagine a locomotive that stops in every town, in every city, in every country, filled with people who share the same vision: to be the change they wish to see in the world; to make the world a better place for each and every person who lives in it. A place filled with courage, strength, respect, acceptance, kindness, generosity, fearlessness, and most importantly, love.

Want a ticket? Open your heart. Seek guidance when you are struggling. Take care of your body. Fill your brain with knowledge and your soul with light and inspiration. Explore your spirituality. Trust your instincts. Transform negative thoughts into positive ones. Water your internal garden so that you may continue to grow. Accept who you are and embrace your individuality. Be honest. Stand strong. Speak your mind. Love yourself. Then-

Share it. Treat people the way you wish to be treated. Give more than people expect. Do it with joy in your heart. A small act of kindness will mean more than you'll ever know. One of the best ways to give is to volunteer for an organization or cause you believe in. Check out the web sites below or think about what might be the best fit for your abilities and interests and find your own. The rest is up to you. And remember, you don't have to be a super-hero to change the world. You just have to be you.

Amnesty International
Protect human rights worldwide.
website: www.amnesty.org

Big Brothers Big Sisters
Mentor a child between the ages of 5 and 18.
website: www.bbbsa.org

CoachArt (Los Angeles)
Improve the quality of life for underprivileged children and adolescents with life-threatening illnesses by providing free, personal lessons in the arts and athletics.
website: www.coachart.org

EarthDay Network
Keep the environment clean.
website: www.earthday.net

God's Love We Deliver (NY)
website: www.godslovewedeliver.org

Heifer International
End world hunger.
website: www.heifer.org

SADD (Students Against Destructive Decisions)
A peer leadership organization dedicated to preventing destructive decisions, particularly underage drinking, other drug use, impaired driving, teen violence and teen depression and suicide.
website: www.saddonline.com

Seeds of Peace (NY)
Help empowering young leaders from regions of conflict.
website: www.seedsofpeace.org

Volunteers of America
Search by state and category of service (e.g. Children and Youth, Elderly, and Homeless) for places to give your time.
website: www.voa.org

Wilderness Volunteers
Preserve America's "wild lands."
website: www.wildernessvolunteers.org

World Teach
Live and work as a volunteer teacher in developing countries.
website: www.worldteach.org

* from www.mariska.com