http://newiprogressive.com/images/stories/S5/wisconsin_farm_s5.jpgThis week Sen. Kathleen Vinehout takes a break from the politics of Madison and writes about the joy of being out in the woods – whether deer hunting or simply basking in the beauty of the countryside.
http://newiprogressive.com/images/stories/S5/walker_jobs_tour_280.jpgNew reports show Governor's top jobs agency continues to give taxpayer dollars to help corporations downsize Wisconsin jobs and flout state law. Re-branding won’t work and legislators should settle for nothing less than closure, says Green Bay Senator.
http://newiprogressive.com/images/stories/S5/wisconsin-flag-s5.jpgA report published by the Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance (WISTAX) tracks statistics reflecting the economy, education and quality of life in Wisconsin. It's not rocket science, there's a lot of room for improvement.
MADISON - There was an insightful and thought provoking story in the New York Times the other day by journalist Alec MacGillis about why the poorest parts of the country are inclined to support the politicians who are most hostile to any form of government assistance to the poor.
Democrats may not want to hear it, but MacGillis is speaking directly to them when he says: “The temptation for coastal liberals is to shake their heads over those godforsaken white-working-class provincials who are voting against their own interests. But this reaction misses the complexity of the political dynamic that’s taken hold in these parts of the country. It misdiagnoses the Democratic Party’s growing conundrum with working-class white voters. And it also keeps us from fully grasping what’s going on in communities where conditions have deteriorated to the point where researchers have detected alarming trends in their mortality rates.”
If the Democrats are to avoid going the way of the dinosaur, they have to solve the rural riddle. There are countless clues to be found and just as many potential solutions to be tried. Here are five to start with:
Doing these five things would be enormously helpful to rural areas. But today’s GOP won’t do any of them. They won’t do the first four because today’s breed of Republican is philosophically at odds with the measures required to accomplish those aims. In fact, they are moving in the exact opposite direction. And they won’t do the fifth because it is politically advantageous for them to be able to pit the poor against the nearly-poor.
If these five steps are to be taken, it’ll be the Democrats taking them. If enough of them wake up to the need . . . and the opportunity.
Opportunity for area students to learn firsthand about how the State Senate Operates.
MADISON - State Senator Dave Hansen (D-Green Bay) announced today that the Senate Scholars program is now accepting applications from high school students age 16-18 to participate in the weeklong program that provides high school students with a hands-on learning experience about how the Legislature operates and the role it plays in state government.
“This is a great opportunity for high schools students from our area to learn about their state government in a way that goes beyond the classroom and into the halls and offices of the State Senate,” said Senator Hansen.
Senate Scholars will see the State Senate in action behind the scenes and learn how policy is developed, legislation is created and passed, the public hearing process and constituent relations. They will have the opportunity to work with state senators and legislative staff and have the opportunity to learn more about our democratic system of government from University of Wisconsin faculty.
“Over the years we have had many Senate Scholars from the 30th Senate District and Northeast Wisconsin," Hansen said. "It is an invaluable learning experience for any student of political science and state government. I would encourage any student with an interest in working in government or becoming involved in the legislative process to apply.”
Legislative Staffer Jay Wadd contributed to this story.