On March 17th when this note (my blog) was originally posted Professor Cronon (UW - Madison) had just posted his note (3/15) about how we should all be "educating" ourselves about how our democracy works. I had visited his blog on 3/16 and was reminded of ALEC (American Legislative Exchange Council) but not much more. ALEC had not yet in and of it self become a "hot topic" even with Professor Cronon's blog. This seems to have changed with the FOIA request by the Wisconsin Republican Party of Professor Cronon's UW-Madison emails.
Going back to 3/17: Sometime later, again in following the news, the issue of public funding for NPR / PBS and "gotcha videos" became a hot topic. I recalled that there had been some "news" about ALEC from NPR or PBS or both - it seemed to me it was "video" but in my searching I stopped searching when I found the NPR (quite politely labeled) audio story below.
When I posted (3/17) the suggestion of why NPR might be an "ideological" target I knew that ALEC was the subject of the audio. To me it was just an example how Republican's / conservatives have seemed to be able to organize and identify long-term objectives and strategies to work toward them. I left another, personal example, on Professor Cronon's blog about David Keene and the American Conservative Union and how this classmate of mine (at the UW) knew he most wanted to be a "Republican" at the age of 18 or 19 - this is roughly 48 years ago.
First, perhaps the rest of us think too short term or tactically and when we organize to support "collective bargaining" or some other cause we need to be more like a conservative.
Second, we need "journalists" to be vigilant and thoughtful and perhaps a little more strident about asking tough questions and not just "neutral" reporting of sound bites and platitudes.
Here is a good example of deeper thinking and reporting -
from the article ...
Republicans (WI) have proposed a pair of bills that would allow insurance policies in Wisconsin to ingore state mandates requiring coverage for a broad variety of medical treatments and conditions, including autism, cochlear implants and mental health problems. One of these bills would allow out-of-state health insurers to offer plans in Wisconsin that do not conform to the state's mandates.
From 3/17 Blog:
3/17/2011 ...and another kind of reason
Shaping State Laws With Little Scrutiny by Laura Sullivan
... as I recall some state legislators were "given" scholarships to attend ... it would be interesting to trace legislation back to Wisconsin and our Legislative Reference Bureau where it would be redrafted for introduction ... any students need a project?
WI 1848 Forward:Reprise 3/17/11 - #NPR an Ideological Target! Why? - #ALEC #NRA - #Cronon : David #Keene Pres #NRA