On leadership, oratory, thanks and how I would cast THE WIRE from the ranks of local politics

As you may have read, last week the Milwaukee Common Council was voting on Amendment #117 along with a host of other budget type thingamajigs (the technical term preferred by all economists, of course). I'm happy to report that Amendment #117, one that would have cut about $100,000 from The Milwaukee Arts Board budget, was squashed. Like a grape.

I applaud all my Artsy Schmartsy readers for chiming in to your alderpeople. Huzzah! Your big mouths are good for things other than commenting on what a boob I am, it seems. I also am giving a symbolical pat on the back to all the aldermen and women who voted against Amendment #117. There's one dude who voted for it, but you know who you are and we'll bury the hachet somehow Aldreman Bohl. Actually, Aldreman Bohl argued that the a county sales tax could increase funding for MAB, so he's actually a white hat wearing kind of guy, too.

But in sharing the applause, I must point out one great champion of the arts on the Milwaukee Common Council. I am told that his support of arts funding oratory last week was passionate, informed, humane, and eloquent. We're lucky that Michael Murphy, a tremendous ally of the arts in general, is our Milwaukee Arts Board chair.

Doesn't he look mayoral? (I'm crossing my fingers for a Michael Murphy mayoral bid someday.)

You can e-mail Michael and tell him he's a hell of a guy at mmurph@milwaukee.gov. And he is just that, a hell of a guy.

Now, I must also mention that I firmly believe that Michael Murphy has been moonlighting for the past few years on HBO's The Wire as an actor playing Tommy Carcetti, the young, brash alderman who would become mayor of Baltimore.

You see it right? A little makeup and a slightly different haircut can't hide the fact the Michael Murphy and Tommy Carcetti are the same person. I mean, I've never seen them together, have you?

Please, no spoilers. I'm watching old episodes of The Wire now and have just finished Season Four. I want to find out who dies or gets fired or thrown in jail on my own terms.

Just e-mail Tommy...er, Michael right now at mmurph@milwaukee.gov and tell him he's doing a bang up job.