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Sunday, December 28, 2014 |  Madison, WI: 29.0° F  A Few Clouds
The Daily

OPINION

Wisconsin Legislature oversteps with new gallery rules

Let's start with a stipulation: Not all of the inappropriate behavior that takes place in the Wisconsin state Legislature is committed by lawmakers. Some spectators, especially in the last two years, have also shown poor manners and bad form. People who shout "Liar!" from the gallery as the governor gives a State of the State address are being not just disrespectful but disruptive, and deserve to be kicked out. >More
 Real environmentalists pay per mile to drive their car

I know you. You feel pretty smug about that hybrid, don't you? You're driving just as much (maybe even more) than you used to, but you're emitting a fraction of the greenhouse gases, saving the planet as you tool down the road. It's like a big sale at Costco. The more you drive the more you save! >More
 Wisconsin mining bill is widely misunderstood

One of the first items of business for Wisconsin's new Legislature will be a reconsideration of Assembly Bill 426, which reforms the state's regulation of iron mining. In the previous session, the bill passed the Assembly by a 59-36 margin but fell one vote shy in the Senate, when Republican Dale Schultz defected in an otherwise straight party-line vote. With an expanded 18-to-15 majority, the GOP can pass AB 426 without Schultz's vote, but hopefully a few Democrats will also support the interests of their blue-collar union constituents by voting in favor of this widely misunderstood bill. >More
 Republicans' tax plan will help Wisconsin win the race to the bottom

Republican Assembly Speaker Robin Vos lives in the tiny village of Rochester, population 3,682, whose website boasts of a "unique small town charm that mixes urban, farming and country life styles." It's located just 23 miles from downtown Racine, but might as well be on the other side of the Earth when it comes to the tax policies Vos wants to pursue. >More
 Fiscal cliff deal favors Republican ideology

Thanks to some last-minute deal-making by Joe Biden and Mitch McConnell, we narrowly avoided falling off the fiscal cliff on New Year's Day. So where does that leave us? Hurtling toward another cliff, as it turns out. >More
 2012: The end of the world as we know it

For 27 families the world ended on Dec. 14. No year in review can ignore the senseless deaths of 20 6- and 7-year-olds, six teachers and the shooter's mother at or near the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut. The best way to honor those innocent kids and brave teachers is to do everything we can to eliminate the primary element in that tragedy: the easy availability of massive deadly force. >More
 How can we keep Wisconsin kids safe from gun violence?

The news on Friday about the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., was so horrific, the first question was simply how to take it in. Waiting for the children to get home from school, I posed the question on Facebook: What do you say to a kindergartener, a third-grader and a sixth-grader who may have heard that 20 elementary school children were gunned down, along with six adults, in a school setting just like their own? >More
 Innovations at the UW will make college more affordable and accessible

The New York Times recently called 2012 "the year of the MOOC," the strangely compelling (and somewhat ironic) term for massive open online course. MOOCs are taking the world of higher education by storm, as millions have signed up for online, college-level instruction from online vendors like Udacity and Coursera. In a college town like Madison, MOOCs are a very big deal indeed. >More
 Wisconsin is a national leader in tax handouts to business

In 2009, the company that ran Mercury Marine's Fond du Lac plant put a gun to the head of its workers: Either agree to wage givebacks, they warned, or we'll move your jobs to our plant in Stillwater, Okla. The drama soon involved Gov. Jim Doyle, who was bashed for not being pro-business enough to prevent the company's move. >More
 Treating employees right at Ian's Pizza

The day after the presidential election, Papa John's pizza chain CEO John Schnatter, a Romney supporter, declared that he would have to raise prices to cover the cost of providing health insurance to his employees under Obamacare. Nick Martin, co-owner and managing partner of Madison-based Ian's Pizza, was unimpressed. Ian's has offered its 50 full-time employees comprehensive health care coverage for the last nine years, Martin pointed out. >More
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