Viewpoints

More than one former Wisconsinite has told me over the years that to be considered a resident of another state – and be exempt from paying Wisconsin’s high taxes without completely abandoning your family and friends back home – you have to spend six months and a day there.

Turns out that’s not true.

“It’s becoming more and more important that we raise up generations of young people who know what’s right and wrong, who know what’s truth and what’s false,” said Festerling.

“If we don’t do that, they’re going to go off to these wolves who will eat them alive. And so I’m just so thrilled that school choice is giving guys who have a book called the Bible, that can preach the truth and the gospel, and if parents like that and want that, they’ll subscribe to it and send their kids.”

Many of the folks proudly wearing the cardinal and white are Wisconsin transplants who are now sunburnt Florida residents. They were lured south, many of them, for short stints by the sun and the surf, but stayed for the taxes — or, actually, the lack thereof.

In recent years, Wisconsin has been transferring money from the general fund into the transportation fund. And for many years, every projection has shown that gas tax revenue likely has peaked and henceforth will decline as cars get better mileage and as more electric vehicles hit the road.

My hope for 2023 is that every legislator in Madison will talk to somebody in their district who lost their small business or their job, and ask why.

Shouldn’t be hard to find them.

Between March of 2020 and March of 2021 — the last period of time for which I could find data — 17,364 Wisconsin establishments opened and 13,698 closed, according to the U.S. Small Business Administration. Almost all of those were small businesses.

Students in Milwaukee’s public high schools who want a better life and know that school is their only way up are being battered, assaulted and exposed to gunfire or other reckless conduct on a daily basis. The school board ignores that and listens to activists, who think cops are bullies.

We need to change something. Instead of blowing the surplus on padding government, we can use it to help Wisconsinites preserve their own freedom and prosperity. The “Mandate for Madison” has lots of ideas from some of the best thinkers about Wisconsin, many of them costing nothing, but consider two giant proposals.

What made it possible for Jaime’s family and for 90% of St. Thomas’ students is Wisconsin’s parental choice program, which lets some families direct their children’s state education aid to a school they choose.

Robin Vos, fresh off a victory that seals his role as Speaker of the Assembly and now coming on 30 years in local and state politics, threw out a couple olive branches at Gov. Tony Evers Thursday that cynics might say are just the post-election niceties that invariably morph into barbs and stiff-arms in the Capitol hallways.

Do the state education bureaucrats, the schools of education, the consultants, the unions and the central offices know the one right way to teach math? That big test, the National Assessment of Educational Progress, or NAEP, found that not once in the past two decades have Wisconsin’s public schools managed to make more than 41% of 8th-graders proficient in math.

The cops have had enough, says Kennedy, and the long lines that have stretched across generations in some families, grandfathers to fathers to sons who all were eager to serve and sacrifice – are being severed.