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Tuesday, July 29, 2014 |  Madison, WI: 66.0° F  Light Rain

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Confessions of a co-sleeper

I was driving my daughter to camp last weekend when she asked me something that had clearly been bothering her: "Is it dangerous to sleep with your baby?" It was a loaded question, since she knows she and her sisters each slept in bed with me and my husband until they were six to eight months old, an experience that remains among the very sweetest of my life. >More
 The opportunity gap in public schools

Like a lot of harried parents, I felt besieged by the usual round of end-of-year field trips and awards ceremonies last week. First-graders don't really care that you have an intense week at work. They want to know if you are coming to the zoo. And what kind of a parent doesn't attend the all-school talent show at 2 p.m. on the last day? Parents who have no flexibility in their jobs, that's who. >More
 Billionaires warn Scott Walker over John Doe settlement

No sooner had Mary Burke pulled even with Scott Walker in the polls than the Koch brothers' Americans for Prosperity dumped another $900,000 into a major TV ad buy in Wisconsin. The point of the new ads is to tell Wisconsinites that we are doing much better than we think we are. >More
 The student debt issue could decide the 2014 election

Watching all those happy Badgers in caps and gowns snapping selfies around Madison last weekend, you'd never guess they were buried under a debt load that now amounts to a heaping $1.2 trillion. Debt cast such a dark shadow over commencement ceremonies this year, it's hard to fathom what a different world today's college graduates are entering from the one we lived in not so long ago. >More
 Wisconsin's poor kids suffer most under the school privatization model

The Economic Policy Institute released a shocking report last week, detailing how the national charter school company Rocketship makes its money by shortchanging Milwaukee's poor kids. "Do Poor Kids Deserve Lower-Quality Education Than Rich Kids? Evaluating School Privatization Proposals in Milwaukee, Wisconsin" documents the effects of both for-profit and nonprofit charter schools that are taking over struggling public schools. >More
 The sharks are circling Madison schools

If you are a Madison public schools parent like I am, you may have received a robocall recently offering "free tuition to send your child to a private or religious school. We at School Choice Wisconsin are proud to pay for this call, because we want the very best for you and your child," a woman's voice told me before I hung up the phone. >More
 Scott Walker's ruthless ambition

Never mind CPAC. Campaign coordination got Scott Walker where he is today. Walker tied for fifth place in the Conservative Political Action Conference straw poll last weekend, which was a bit of a comedown after pundits named him Flavor of the Month among the lineup of prospective Republican presidential candidates for 2016 following Chris Christie's fall from grace. But our governor still got a shout-out from Reince Priebus and Grover Norquist for his union-busting here in Wisconsin. >More
 Scott Walker's contempt for constituents

We all knew that Gov. Scott Walker does not hold teachers or other public employees in high regard. We knew it when he slashed public employees' collective bargaining rights, as well as their pay and benefits. And we had an inkling that he didn't care much about funding for public services. >More
 The Scott Walker scandals

The worse things get for New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, the brighter our own Gov. Scott Walker's prospects look as a presidential contender in 2016. >More
 The Republican war on Wisconsin's public schools

Sen. Dale Schultz, Republican of Richland Center, is stepping down, taking with him the last shred of sanity in our state's Republican Party. >More
 The Wisconsin Legislature vs. the people

It seems every day brings more eye-popping news from our state Legislature. When they are not busy pushing a bill written by a multimillionaire divorced dad and Republican campaign donor who wants to cap his own child support payments, they are working to bring back the seven-day workweek. >More
 Wisconsin stacks the deck against unions

Remember the nonstop outrage over the Affordable Care Act? Opponents of Obamacare spent weeks shouting that the whole health-care expansion was clearly a failure because of glitches in the website when people tried to sign up. Obamacare critics, meet the Act 10 rollout in Wisconsin. >More
 How Wisconsin missed out on health care

The debate in the Wisconsin Legislature over turning down millions of dollars in federal funding to expand Medicaid was painful to watch. And now Wisconsin is reaping the results of that awful decision, even as states around us benefit from fully implementing the Affordable Care Act, including the Medicaid expansion. The contrast is stark: Tens of thousands of Wisconsinites are losing their health care coverage for no reason at all. >More
 The Republican-led Wisconsin Legislature rams through antidemocratic bills

Poor Rep. Peter Barca (D-Kenosha). The Assembly minority leader's role seems to be as the face of a bygone, good-government era in Wisconsin history, looking on in horror as state Republicans run roughshod over everything from open meetings law to voting rights in their frenzied rush to convert our state into a one-party kleptocracy. >More
 Pushing back against Republican lawlessness over Act 10

When Dane Country Circuit Court Judge Juan Colas held officials in Gov. Scott Walker's administration in contempt this week, he was pushing back against a level of unchecked lawlessness by this administration that is "practically seditious," says attorney Lester Pines. >More
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