Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Hey Paddy, Lance, whoever -- Boycott me!

Our old friend Paddy Mac at the Journal Sentinel doesn't do any heavy lifting on this blog post,entitled, "Hey" Let's Boycott the Ghosts of Greater Wisconsin," except to lift the content right from Lance Burri in FoxPolitics.

His topic: Why is everybody picking on Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce (WMC) when there are those liberal groups out there:
The Greater Wisconsin Committee -- a shadowy interest group if there ever was one -- spent $1.4 million on the race. About a third of all third-party expenditures.

"Epic's outrage is, however, directed only at WMC. Not at WEAC, nor at GWC, whose money would easily have 'bought' the election, had WMC's not evened things out.

"Of course, expressing outrage at those groups would be a meaningless expression of outrage. How does one 'boycott' WEAC? Refuse to do business with anybody who pays school taxes? With anybody who sends their kids to Wisconsin public schools? With anybody who graduated from Wisconsin public schools?

"How does one 'boycott' GWC? We don't even know who they are.

"One doesn't boycott them. That's how. Because one can't. There's nothing to boycott. WMC, on the other hand...we know who they are. They're businesspeople. They're the creators -- the ones Winston Churchill described as the horse that pulls the wagon."
Gotta give Burri credit for some great Orwellian work. He says WMC "evened things out" to prevent those loony lefty groups from influencing the election. Right. Except that WMC had done the same thing last year for Annette Ziegler and announced right afterward that it intended to do the same thing again. It's the liberal side that has been trying to play catch-up and level the playing field.

I'm hardly a disinterested observor. I was GWC's general and media consultant the first two years it existed, 2004-06. Then I retired from consulting but became a member of the GWC board in the spring of 2007. That's no secret, and neither are the identities of others at GWC. The organization is incorporated as a Wisconsin non-profit, recognized by the federal government as a tax exempt advocacy group, and also operates a state political action committee and a federal 527. It files every required report and obeys every state and federal tax and campaign law.

The reason you can't boycott GWC is that its board members are people who share an interest in promoting progressive issues, not changing the laws so they can make more money. The board consists of a couple of community activists, a couple of lawyers, and me. I suppose you could not use the law firms of those two lawyers and call that a boycott.

But feel free, Paddy, Lance, or whoever else, to boycott me, if that will make you feel any better.

Not that any conservative has ever given me a nickel anyway.

Let the boycott begin.


  1. Is Patty anything more that another person to regurgitate Sykes' nonsense rambles? Minus the house crises, he's made little sense and uses misleading stats / flawed 'facts' to state his case.

  2. Where McIlheran works, the circulation is falling along with the stock price. There have been two rounds of staff buyouts, and a third, just announced, will probably be under-subscribed, leading to layoffs right where McIlheran works.

    He is the LAST person in Milwaukee to suggest any disgruntled people boycott anything.