Who's Paying for Walker's Most Recent Photo Op?


 — Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker is headed to London for a trade mission that comes on the heels of a similar trip last week by another potential Republican presidential candidate, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie.

Walker's trip runs Monday through Friday. It's his second oversees trade mission and comes as he's tries to bolster his foreign policy credentials.

Walker's spokeswoman, Laurel Patrick, says the trip is primarily focused on "private meetings and factory tours focused on attracting foreign direct investment to Wisconsin." She calls it a business trip, "not a photo op."

More details about Walker's itinerary are expected to be released later Monday.

Walker's only known public event so far is a speech Wednesday at the Chatham House entitled, "Building Global Partnerships for Stronger Local Economies."



Another "Drafting Error"? Walker Also Deleted "Fair and Peaceful" From Labor Relations Statutes

Long before Scott Walker dusted off the statutes and tried to put "search for truth" and the rest of the Wisconsin Idea in the 'ol wood chipper, he successfully obliterated something almost as big: he deleted "fair and peaceful" and the rest of the Declaration of Policy for labor peace from the State Employment Labor Relations Act (SELRA), which was a general mission statement for how Wisconsin should deal with its public servants.

I know this going to shock you, but Wisconsin hasn't always had peaceful labor relations. Strikes and other labor unrest were common and a huge inconvenience to the public. Historically speaking, Wisconsin was home to the Bayview Massacre, where seven unarmed workers were shot and killed by the Wisconsin National Guard during protests for a little bitty thing called the eight hour workday.

To ensure that labor conflicts were resolved peacefully, Wisconsin passed a wide variety of laws and developed "suitable machinery for fair and peaceful adjustment of whatever controversies may arise."

Breaking: Drafting Docs Clearly Verify Walker Camp Intended to Kill WI Idea

Just got these from the Legislative Reference Bureau.  

The first set of documents from the Walker administration, clearly requesting that the language for the Wisconsin Idea be removed.  The second set of documents is from the Walker administration, confirming, that they intended to delete the Wisconsin Idea from Wisconsin statutes.

Stay tuned:  More to follow. 

Letter from Walker Admin to Legislative Drafting by lounsburyjud

Smoking Gun Found: Scott Walker's Bag Man Paid for Hit on GOP Senator

In Walker's Wisconsin, it's never "agree to disagree"-- it's agree to agree with the Governor.

If you don't, you'll end up like former Republican State Senator Mike Ellis. Ellis was Wisconsin's longest serving Republican state senator and, although he historically had been considered a staunch conservative, after the Walker caliphate was installed in 2011, he came to be viewed more and more as a moderate because he dared to be something other than a yes man.

So, Walker had him whacked-- at least that was the rumor. No, no, no silly rabbit, not that kind of whacked-- he killed his political career by having the notorious political mercenary, James O'Keefe (of New Jersey) pay a visit to Wisconsin and bait Ellis into saying embarrassing things into a hidden camera. (So embarrassing, in fact, that Ellis decide not to seek re-election in 2014.)

At the time, everyone in Wisconsin was scratching their collective cheeseheads wondering why in the hell James O'Keefe would be interested in A) putting a hit on a fellow Republican and B) wasting his time with an obscure state Senator in Wisconsin. The only obvious answer: Scott Walker was tired of Ellis being only a 90% head-nodder and put out a hit on him. But like most rumors, there wasn't any proof tying Walker to O'Keefe and it faded into the political ether.

We Don't Need No Education


I am a native Wisconsinite who currently lives in Wisconsin and works overseas as a higher education consultant.  I have worked with ministries of education in developing nations throughout Asia and have regularly used the University of Wisconsin System as an example of an outstanding public university that serves the population of the state.  In 2009 while serving a consultancy with the Asian Development Bank in Vietnam I made a point of illustrating how the traditions in a state like Wisconsin with a population of less than 6 million people could have supported a major research university like the University of Wisconsin-Madison, which at that time was ranked as the number seventeenth Research University in the World. 

My work in higher education in developing nations involved developing and implementing policies and strategic plans that would move these nations ahead by developing World Class Universities in the region.  These involved plans that were over twenty years long and included an entire rethinking of university governance. The World Bank consultants agreed that a World Class University needed the following;

Concentration of talent

The concentration of talent involves not only the best teachers and researchers but also the best students.  World Class Universities must plan to attract both.

Ron Johnson Chooses Out-of-State Chain to "Showcase Local Businesses"

As his re-election looms, U.S. Senator Ron Johnson is making a desperate attempt to fix his image of being Senator Snipe-- the Senator who is rumored to exist, but who nobody ever actually sees.

So, his staff came whipped up the idea to do a "Supper Club Tour," which is described as a two-fer:  It gives his constituents the opportunity to verify that he is actually real and it gives Johnson the "opportunity to showcase local businesses."  After all, what says, "I am not the elite gazillionaire that married into ridiculous wealth" more than going out for a beer and burger at the local supper club?

You know what I'm talkin' about --some place like the Kall Inn near Hazel Green, that has been in the Kahle family since 1945.  It doesn't get any more local than that!

Yeah, well... that's not quite what Johnson had in mind.  

Myth Busting Walker's "Outstanding Teacher of the Year" Getting Fired Story

This past weekend in Iowa, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker rolled out one his favorite talking points:  The story of how Wisconsin's 2010 "outstanding teacher of the year" winner Megan Sampson got laid off days after receiving the award and how his "reforms" prevent that from ever happening again.

This would be a compelling true if it were true, but it’s mostly fiction. 

Yes, Sampson did get an award in 2010, but it wasn't for "outstanding teacher of the year" as Walker claims.  Sampson was awarded something called the Nancy Hoefs Memorial Award, which is given by a small group called the Wisconsin Council of Teachers of English (WCTE) for "an outstanding first-year teacher of the English language arts." In order to be considered for the award, a first year English teacher must apply for it by writing a cover letter and including two letters of recommendation.