Man MKE's blog

Memo to Wisconsin's star chamber: Just the facts, please

Those of you old enough might remember the disclaimer that accompanied every episode of TV's 1950s-'60s police show, "Dragnet." A narrator would entone: "The story you are about to see is true; the names have been changed to protect the innocent." That also roughly describes one of the reasons Wisconsin law has enshrined the John Doe investigation, a kind of closed grand jury process, minus the grand jury.

Walker and Menards: Gov's dark money exploits worse than previously reported ... $1.5 million worse

Michael Isikoff, pictured here, is an award-winning national investigative journalist who has worked for Newsweek, NBC, the Washington Post and other news media. Yesterday Isikoff broke a literally huge Scott Walker story. His report shows just how reckless and damaging the U.S. Supreme Court's recent "money is speech and anonymity is cool" rulings on campaign finance have almost by themselves turned our democracy into a kleptocracy and even oligarchy. And how Walker is at the heart of darkness.

THE FACELESS FEW: In campaigning gov's absence, inner circle runs Wisconsin...badly

John Torinus used to be the business editor of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and is a respected voice in Wisconsin's business community. For some years he's been CEO of Wisconsin-based Serigraph Corp., an innovative business that was way ahead of the curve in health care reform for its employees.

Torinus is a reasonably conservative fellow and one smart cookie. So political insiders and business leaders across the state should sit up and take notice, because, increasingly, Torinus is calling out the Walker administration and its leader, for gaps in leadership. Widening gaps.

A RTW clue-train for Scott Walker

Bloomberg News reported today that at his signing ceremony for the Republican Party's new right-to-twerk-us law, Scott Walker praised the measure while insisting it wasn't his idea:

At a bill-signing Monday, Walker said the push for the right-to-work bill, passed last week by the legislature, came from lawmakers themselves.

“Our leaders here led,” Walker, 47, said during a ceremony in Brown Deer, Wis. “It was the leadership you see here who drove the train on this.”

BIG FAIL: The incredible shrinking Walker candidacy

While his poll numbers among rather insular tea party Republicans in Iowa may at the moment be high, wider evidence suggests the Walker worm may be turning.

The biggest sign of trouble? Growing questions about Scott Walker’s campaign style and performance, especially from within the conservative and Republican camp.

If you seek evidence that the Wisconsin governor’s national political rise already is slowing, look no further than today's Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. The paper's opinion and news pages today are blanketed with increasing skepticism about Walker's political acumen and policies.

"Right to work" mash-up: Presenting Upton Sinclair and The Buckinghams

The famous muckracking novelist Upton Sinclair had it right when he said, "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!"

He was speaking in the 1930s, another time of American economic upheaval, but Sinclair's observation very well applies to today's Wisconsin Republican Party, a bunch of ideologues and opportunists for whom facts and public sentiment don't matter as much as their own fortunes.

Re Journal Sentinel's "right to work" newsroom, Media Trackers runs off the rails

Media Trackers, a conservative web site that is a self-styled critic of the supposedly liberal mainstream (or, if you're a Palin fan, "lamestream")  news media, is thumping its chest again over the fact that the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's newsroom is (gasp!) not only unionized, but that it already is (double-gasp!) a "right-to-work" shop. Indeed, say the Trackers, fully 38 percent of the JS employees eligible for union membership (triple-gasp!) have opted out of membership. Let's review just how overinflated these revelations truly are.

No. 1 most disgusting silence on right-to-work-for-less bill: public-safety unions exempt from Act 10

This week the players' unions for Major League Baseball, the National Football League and the National Hockey League all issued statements opposing the Republican Party's blitzkrieg move to turn Wisconsin into a so-called "right to work" state that would gut private-sector union power.


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