Let's get rid of the "Boss Hoggs" and "Roscoe Pekoe Trains" of Wisconsin
We all know fishing is a popular pastime #upnorth, so thank god we’ve got our local paper to provide an ample supply of fish wrapper for the springtime anglers.
Misogynist publisher of the Lakeland Times Gregg Walker and his hapless henchman, self-proclaimed “investigative reporter” Richard Moore, put out yet another hit piece on our owner, Kirk Bangstad, yesterday. Here’s the article
It’s behind a paywall so we suggest you DON’T pay for it--we’ll tell you the gist in a moment.
But before we delve too deeply into this laughable piece full of innuendo and mostly free of fact, let’s think back to the hilarious sitcom “The Dukes of Hazzard.”
What made “The Dukes of Hazard” so funny was the comically evil duo of Boss Hogg and Roscoe P. Coltrane--commissioner of the fictional Hazzard County and his pliable sheriff. Their sole purpose in every episode was to harass Bo and Luke Duke--two lovable brothers who perpetually drove their muscle car over the speed limit.
What made the show funny was that these hapless small town “officials,” in their quest to put the Dukes behind bars, continuously made themselves look absolutely ridiculous.
Although misogynist publisher Gregg Walker and his pliable sidekick Richard Moore aren’t the county commissioner nor the sheriff, it’s easy for us to make that connection given that they’re probably the most publicly buffoonish members of the “Old Boys Network of Minocqua,” forever boorishly trying to stifle progress in the #northwoods.
Let’s remember some of their greatest hits over the last few years.
-Referred to the actions of Chamber of Commerce Director Krystal Westfahl as “retarded,” a term rejected by the entire universe of decent people.
-Filed an open records complaint against Oneida County Public Health Director Linda Conlon for failing to provide them with 23,000 emails, many protected by HIPPA (of course looking to dig up material for a misogynistic hit piece), while she was trying to handle the Covid crisis.
-Threatened to sue our owner Bangstad for defamation not ONCE but TWICE, infamously taking the reverse-logic position of a newspaper protected by the 1st Amendment trying to silence free speech.
-And we mustn’t forget their countless pseudo-science-filled articles denying climate change and the seriousness of Covid.
Comedies like the “Dukes of Hazard” or “Waiting for Guffman” are evergreen because so many small towns have their own small minded “Boss Hogs” and “Roscoe P. Coltranes” whose laughable histrionics resonate among us all.
And by small-minded, we mean those that take the conservative worldview that a small town is one joint, one peaceful protest, or one DaBaby “Rockstar” video away from falling into Satan’s grip.
Because anything that doesn’t involve tipping back EIGHT brandy old-fashioneds while chewing on cigars at the Minocqua Country Club while perpetually condescending to those less fortunate must be “subversive immorality” destined to defile the minds of our youth.
So now that we’ve laid some context, let’s get back to the hit piece against Bangstad.
Richard Moore questioned the numbers in Bangstad’s campaign finance report because they didn’t add up. Bangstad’s compliance accountant looked it up and saw that she had filed current cash-on-hand numbers instead of the numbers on the report’s cut-off date, which erroneously showed a discrepancy. She corrected the error, amended the report, and sent it to the Wisconsin Election Commission. Bangstad’s campaign is waiting for the amendment to show up publicly on the Commission’s website before announcing the correction.
That the State of Wisconsin’s software “accepted” the bank account balance as the erroneous on-hand balance is a surprise because it was not anchored to the actual details of the report. That seemingly is a bigger story.
Had any honest newspaper, let’s say the Wausau Daily Herald for instance, questioned Bangstad’s report, he would have responded.
But the Lakeland Times is not an honest newspaper and is only interested in bullying people it doesn’t like—thus it is our opinion that they should be ignored and allowed to slide into inevitable obsolescence.
Why would we spend a Saturday morning highlighting the bullying tactics of our alt-right newspaper instead of enjoying the outdoors?
Well mostly because it's cold out there, but also because it's this type of mentality that we’re fighting so hard against. Progress means making the lives of those in your community better through empathy, transparency, and thinking outside the box—not clinging to an outdated world-view that excludes most of those that don’t fit into your club.
We can do better than the Lakeland Times in Minocqua, and we must replace the “Boss Hoggs” and the “Roscoe P. Coltranes” that exist throughout the state of Wisconsin.
P.S. We’re obviously not going to reference DaBaby’s “Rockstar” video without providing a link.