State Journal's Company Aligned with Group Running Pro-Waker Ads

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[img_assist|nid=188349|title=|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=243|height=361]Lee Enterprises-- the company that owns the Wisconsin State Journal, La Crosse Tribune and scores of other newspapers accross the country doesn't like unions.

In fact, they so dislike unions that they have put up a website called LeeUnionFree.Net specifically outlining why exactly unions are so horrible. They have all kinds of neat stuff, including the untruthful little piece of propaganda on the left.

And if you click on the "facts about unions" button it takes you to the home page for the Center for Union Facts, which just so happents to be the same group has made a million dollar ad buy on behalf of Scott Kevin Walker.

But, you don't really need to go to Union Facts-- LeeUnionFree has lifted most of the Union Facts talking points and put it on their own site, including charming claims such as your union dues will go toward the "help get our union president out of jail fund" and a warning that if they try and strike, Lee will "permanently replace" you. (Sounds like Lee really bargains in good faith!)

So, for those keeping score at home, not only do most of the Lee Enterprise board give heavily to Republican candidates and conservative groups, they actually have a website preaching anti-union vitriol annnnnd they even are aligned with a group that is running pro-Walker ads in Wisconsin right now!

Yet, Lee Enterprises has used Mccarthistic tactics to search-out and publicly humiliate employees in Wisconsin that signed the recall petition against Scott Walker.

Their justification?  According to Wisconsin State Journal Editor John Smalley:

People accept work-related policies and restrictions all the time. If you want to sell high-end clothing, you can’t wear cut-off jeans to work. If you want to deliver Coca-Cola, you can’t drink Pepsi in your truck.

And if you want to be a journalist, you keep your politics to yourself. That’s just the way it is, and it’s a deal every journalist accepts when he or she joins the profession. 

The issue of workplace rules flared for us last week, when we discovered that six staff members violated our newspaper’s code of ethics, which, among many other things, calls for strict neutrality in all things political.

It’s a common policy, in place at nearly all credible news organizations.

Strict neutrality in all things political, huh? 

I think its clear that the main problem that Lee Enterprises had with employees signing the recall petition is, as Smalley says, "if you want to deliver Coca-Cola, you can't drink Pepsi in your truck."