Local Results from the Spring General Election 2018

Wisconsin’s spring general election’s now over, and in the paragraphs below I’ll consider the local results for state, district, and city-wide races. These results are unofficial; online detail may be found for the counties of Walworth, Jefferson, and Rock (where Rock County’s detail applies only to the WUSD race). Contest/Question Candidates/Preference City Vote % WI Supreme Court […]

A Sham News Story on Foxconn

About a month ago, a local business lobbying group in Whitewater invited an operative of the Walker Administration to the city to talk about Foxconn. The nearby Jefferson County Daily Union sent a stringer to cover the presentation. See Foxconn impact outlined in Whitewater. In the 38-paragraph story, the paper simply reproduces – without the […]

Foxconn as Alchemy: Magic Multipliers

The Foxconn plant isn’t even built yet, but the Walker Admin and its allies (including a few local apologists for corporate welfare in Whitewater) now resort to fantastic, magical claims about how much economic development will come from nearly four billion in taxpayer subsidies. So magical, so fantastic, that they now claim an 18-1 multiplier […]

That From Which Dreams Are Made

Wisconsin, like most states, publishes sets of scorecards measuring students’ progress. (The overwhelming majority of school districts – 91% – at least meet expectations. Our local district falls within this common group; a few particular schools are admirably above it.) Yesterday, the district announced the latest results, after the state’s Department of Public Instruction made them […]

Gov. Thompson Rejects WEDC-Style Loans

Republican Tommy Thompson, who served for fourteen years as governor, has written in opposition to the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation’s loan program.  It’s the right position to take, and shows that Thompson understands the problems with WEDC.  Explicitly, Gov. Thompson’s opposition to WEDC-style loans includes local communities’ doling of loans through their own programs.  (Whitewater’s Community […]

The Public Records Law Still Stands

After a push to alter Wisconsin’s Public Records Law (Wis. Stat. §§ 19.31-19.39), we’re now secure with the original law intact.   Below one will find a recording of Wisconsin A.G. Brad Schimel’s Open Government Summit, held earlier this week at the Concourse in Madison.   J.B. Hollen, Schimel’s immediate predecessor, started strongly in favor of the […]

The Well Runs Dry

As expected, a weak economy, despite four years of talk about spending to create jobs, jobs, jobs means that Wisconsin can expect no additional state revenue to lessen the impact of cuts to education, etc.  In fact, revenue projections are below estimates. Here’s the news from the Journal Sentinel this morning (emphasis added): Madison — […]

Budget First

Last week, Gov. Walker declined to answer Englishman’s question about whether he, Scott Waker, believed in evolution. Today, in the Journal Sentinel, one learns that Assembly Speaker Robin Vos does believe in evolution.  (I’ll bite: I was raised in a liturgical, high-church tradition that taught that the theory of evolution was consistent with faith.  I […]

Caution arrives late, doesn’t recognize its surroundings

Over these last several days, Wisconsin has begun a debate about the size of possible cuts to the UW System, to public school districts, and other parts of the state budget.  Some of the discussion stems from a 2.3.15 analysis from the non-partisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau.  Fiscal Analyst Emily Pope, in reply to State Sen. […]

The Public-Sector Public-Relations Problem

There’s almost no part of government, down to the smallest unit, that doesn’t approach the public as though a salesperson, as a matter of persuasion through public or media relations. Consider how odd, how ironic, this situation is: government, whose authority derives in a free society only from the public, uses public resources to present […]

WEDC: Those Who Can’t Do, Lobby

One of the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation’s many incompetent leaders, Ryan Murray, is leaving behind his controversial, failed role at the WEDC to become a lobbyist.  Jobs agency official becomes lobbyist @ JS All Politics Blog reports on Murray’s shabby move: The No. 2 official at the state’s jobs agency has left the agency to […]

The Importance of Skills

Over at the Gazette, there’s a letter to the editor that touts Mike Sheridan, candidate for the 15th Senate District, as skillful: Your Views: Mike Sheridan has skills, ability to serve state Senate district (subscription req’d). I’ve written about Sheridan’s public career before; for those readers who are Democrats, and will vote in the primary, […]