NEWS BLOG (WSAU) There’s an incredible letter to the editor in Thursday’s Wausau Daily Herald. The writer, Charles Patten, writes to support Mandy Wright for State Assembly. And he includes an allegation against her opponent Pat Snyder.
Patten claims one of his neighbors, who was a teacher in the Wausau School District, was forced to move to Minnesota because of caustic comments that Pat Snyder made about her on WSAU.
Patten says his neighbor wrote a letter to the newspaper earlier year calling for reconciliation and understanding after the bitter debate over Act 10 and teacher’s benefits. The writer claims that Pat “dug into public records to reveal on-air her personal income”, and eventually moved away because “... my colleague was saddened and frightened — saddened because her message of conciliation was so summarily ridiculed, and frightened because her personal life was so thoughtlessly aired.” She now lives in Minnesota.
Of course, the writer leaves out the woman’s name – assuring that the allegations can’t be verified. The Wausau Daily Herald added an editor’s note saying they contacted the still unnamed woman, and that this was “one contributing factor in her family’s decision to leave the community.” Hmmm. What might the other factors be? Maybe that Minnesota hasn’t enacted the Act 10 reforms that Wisconsin did. Economic reasons – better pay and benefits – are the most common reasons for people to move and change jobs. Is that what happened here? Likely. But that information is hidden behind the veil that the letter-writer and newspaper editors kept in place.
There are some other omitted facts you should know about. Teachers’ salaries are public information. Those salaries are available on-line to anyone who wants to look them up. The cost of teachers’ salaries and benefits were at the heart of this issue, and are certainly not out-of-bounds when Act 10 is being debated.
Lastly, Gannett, the parent-company of the Wausau Daily Herald, maintains a searchable data bases of teacher and public employee salaries in the state. The newspaper’s own web site is where people would go if they’re curious how much a teacher or administrator costs the taxpayers. No 'digging' required. Just enter a teacher's name and school, and their salary pops up. Our newspaper friends fail to mention that.
As an aside, the Daily Herald’s link to their own data base has been disabled (coincidence?). But it’s still available at their sister-publication, the Appleton Post-Crescent: http://www.postcrescent.com/section/DataMine
Take Mr. Patten’s letter for what it really is. A teacher wrote a letter to help another teacher who’s running for office.
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It's the final high school football Friday of the regular season.
The East-West log game has added significance because East needs the win to get into the playoffs. West played almost good enough to win last week, and tonight will be like a playoff game for them. I think the Warriors take the log and play spoiler tonight.
Everest plays at winless Kaukauna. Before you pooh-pooh this as an easy game, remember this match up was a dogfight a year ago. It would actually be an easier match-up of Kaukauna was 1-6 or 2-5 instead of 0-7. There will be an extra push for these kids to avoid an oh-fer season – but the probably just aren’t good enough.
Tonight on Fox Sports 1390:
Wausau East vs Wausau West, 6:30pm LIVE
DC Everest at Kaukauna, 9:30pm TAPE DELAY
Here are this weeks football picks.
Wausau West dashes East’s playoff hopes
DC Everest rolls into the post-season over Kaukauna
Marshfield beats SPASH in the best-game-of-the-night
Wisconsin Rapids over Neenah
Merrill over Antigo
Mosinee beats Ashland
Last week: 3-4 Season: 48-14