Dane, Not the WOW Counties

For many years, Republicans have railed against Madison, and against Dane County, as bastions of dysfunctional liberalism. Indeed, this impulse has been strong even after the GOP gained control of both chambers of the legislature and the governor’s office. Funny, though, that it’s Dane County – not the WOW counties of Waukesha, Ozaukee, or Washington – that’s […]

Canadian Milk Producers Seek Regulatory Help to Defeat American Competition

The video below, from the Journal Sentinel, describes how Canadian dairy farmers, unable to compete in the market with Wisconsin & New York dairies, have sought regulatory help from the Canadian government because they cannot manage the volume of American milk production. (Rather than concede their own competitive inferiority, they’ve predictably blamed American dairies for producing […]

On the Whitewater League of Women Voters Questionnaire (Spring 2017)

At its website, the Whitewater Area League of Women Voters has posted a questionnaire for the upcoming local election. For all the good work that the League does (and the national organization does admirable work in many communities), the questionnaire reveals an unsupported, narrow view of Whitewater’s local economy. Consider the 7th question in the survey […]

Who Runs the Economy?

Consider this Twitter exchange between liberty-oriented Republican Justin Amash and a Trump supporter, over the suitability of Trump’s cabinet appointments: The Trump supporter thinks that the credentials of a cabinet nominee justify the appointment; Rep. Amash rightly sees that credentials do not define the scope of legitimate state action.

The Local Economic Context of It All

Over a generation, Whitewater’s big-ticket public spending (where big ticket means a million or more per project in a city of about fifteen-thousand) has come with two, often-contradictory justifications: (1) that residents needed to spend so much because Whitewater was the very center of things, or (2) that residents needed to spend so much to assure that […]

Small Towns in America Can Thrive

I posted recently about James Fallows’s Eleven Signs That a City Will Succeed. (See, from FW, James Fallows on ‘Eleven Signs a City Will Succeed’ (Part 1) and an assessment of those signs for Whitewater, James Fallows on ‘Eleven Signs a City Will Succeed’ (Part 2).) In the video below, James & Deborah Fallows talk […]

Immigration in America Is Not Broken

Immigration has proven to be one of the most divisive issues in the 2016 presidential race. Both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump have expressed that the system is broken, but a consensus on any solution seems untenable. In this video, Atlantic national correspondent James Fallows and contributing writer Deborah Fallows ventured across the country to […]

The Growth That Uplifts

In a recent interview, Ana Revenga, senior director of the World Bank’s Poverty and Equity Group, talks about ending extreme poverty.  See, Ending Extreme Poverty: World Bank Economist Ana Revenga @ The Christian Century. (The World Bank defines extreme poverty as living on less than $1.90 per person per day, and the article describes how […]

The Art Market (in Four Parts): Auctions

The Art Market (in Four Parts): Auctions from Artsy on Vimeo. How did the art auctions business become a multi-billion-dollar industry? The first film in a series about the art market explores this question, leading viewers through the complex history of auctions, with specific attention to the last 20 years. The film unpacks record-breaking sales, […]

Having Nice Things in Whitewater

Some months ago, a community group, while embarking on a new project, began using the saying, ‘yes, we can have nice things in Whitewater.’ One supposes that they meant the saying as an expression of optimism about their chances for success, along the lines of we can do this. It’s also probable that they intended […]

Institute for Justice Fights Anti-Competitive Ban on Baked Goods

Wisconsin is lousy with anti-competitive statutes, designed to protect incumbents from free-market competition. One would prefer that private parties did not have to file lawsuits to protect their economic rights.  Unfortunately, some laws (and some official actions) compel private citizens to seek redress from the courts to protect their liberties.  Fortunately, the Institute for Justice […]

Friday Poll: Preferred Shopping Times, 2015

Preferred Shopping Times, 2015 View image | gettyimages.com The Friday FW poll asks about how you’ll shop over the weekend.  It’s third year that I’ve run this poll (versions of it ran in 2012 and 2013).  Let’s see how this year’s answers compare with those earlier versions.  (Multiple selections are possible for those who’ll shop in […]