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Uppity Wisconsin - Progressive Webmasters

« It Is Time To Think About the Parents. | Main | "How dumb do they think women are?" »

August 28, 2008


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Republicans have accomplished one major element of their ideology, and that is to present everything as relative. The Northwestern apparently bought into the "facts are the same as opinions" philosophy. It was good to point out that the issue ads from the two groups, WEAC and WMC, were not the same and nor were their messages.

What never gets mentioned is how groups like WMC and their outside funding are meant to drain the recouces of the opposition party and groups. The money WEAC spent on the Butler/Gableman race is money that won't be spend on the legislative races, which will have a much greater impact when it comes to school funding.

I put together an audio clip of WMC's James Buchen from his appearance of WPR's morning show, where he acts surprised that he was described as partisan by Chancellor Wiley. Of course, I also posted many of his kind words about liberals and Democrats from his recent editorial.

Pete Gruett

I think, apart from the clear question of degree, there's another reason Wiley singled out WMC. He was describing a fiscal and economic crisis and he clearly thought that there should have been common cause between the university and the business community to work together. That was largely precluded by the reduction of the state's preeminent business lobby to a subsidiary of the Republican party, which was busy lobbing grenades at Bascom Hill.

Peter Rickman

This is not a partisan squabble or battle so much as it is an ideological fight. It is not about Republicans and Democrats; it's about a conservative, regressive ideology. The ideology is not low taxes - it's no taxes on the wealthy and on corporations. It is not small government - it's no government that acts in the public interest and instead only in the interest of the aforementioned corporations and wealthy. It is not about intellectual pursuit - it's about anti-intellectualism and anti-education. It is not about public and private - it is about privatization of the public good.

The fact is that what is good for business can be debated by reasonable individuals. I happen to believe that a strong, shared prosperity economy leads to successfull business and not that an all-powerful business class succeeding at the expense of the broader economic picture for all means a strong economy. My thoughts aside, this is not about the good of business and the economy - it is about an ideological fight where WMC is pushing a regressive, conservative philosophy that has only the interests at heart of those who subscribe to its failed tenets.

Power for this conservative, regressive ideology persists because of the structural dominance of conservative institutions. WMC is perhaps the linchpin of that infrastructure here in Wisconsin.

The Republican Party in Wisconsin is now a functionary of this hard-right conservative ideology. WMC and its conservative movement ilk are the drivers, and not vice-versa. That Buchen and the rest of the crew at WMC have come from the Republican Party in some form or another is simply an expression of the dominance and persistence of the conservative movement here in Wisconsin and nationally.


I view WMC as an organization that wants everything to support the corporations. So when you say anti-education, I think they would counter that they support the University. I think what they mean is that they support their version of the University - a research agenda set by the corporations that fund the grants. A curriculum that is skewed by the professors corporate funding (fewer arts and letters, much less journalism). Also, corporations seem to support athletics. This plays into competition being all important. And competition is the free market. Competition is good so do what it takes to help your team/company win.


I found an interesting twist with the Republican VP candidate that should reflect badly on Huebsch, Fitzgerald, Nass and Gundrum. It will be interesting to see how much support they'll throw her way when they find out she passed a tax on big oil, like Doyles proposal, reaping huge state profits and providing an energy rebate to Alaskans.

Bruce K

I oppose the objectives and tactices of WMC and believe many of their public statements about Wisconsin being a tax hell have made the state less able to attract business -- and probably discouraged some recent college graduates from staying in the state. And like many of us, I now discover that a number of companies I do business with are WMC members, and some are directors. Before I stop doing business with these companies I'd like to give them a chance to explain their support for various WMC positions. Is there a list of WMC's most egregious activities and the adverse consequences of these positions that I can ask these businesses to explain why they support them?


You can click on the "WMC watch" link on the upper left corner of the main page.

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