Right Wing Attack on Michigan and Wisconsin Professors
The right wing think tank, Mackinac Center for Public Policy, which Italked about last week, and which is funded in part by the Koch brothers, has launched attacks on a professor of history in Wisconsin, and 3 professors in Michigan. From The Ed Show blog:
The right-wing Mackinac Center for Public Policy in Michigan has submitted a request under the Freedom of Information Act. They want the Labor Relations Departments of 3 Michigan universities to produce all e-mails relating to the Wisconsin labor situation--the one we've been featuring here on The Ed Show for weeks.
Now, it is perfectly legal to make this kind of FOIA request, though it may be litigated. Academics say this FOIA request is unusually broad and nearly without precedent.
One professor who is subject to the FOIA request put it this way:
"[They're] going after folks they don't agree with."
Another professor said:
"I've been an educator since the early 1980s and I've never had a FOIA request."
It's far from an isolated incident. There's a pattern emerging. Last week, history professor at the University of Wisconsin William Cronon, was hit with a FOIA request from the Wisconsin Republican party. They want Cronon's emails relating to labor unions or labor leaders.
When they first went after Professor Cronon, he had just written a piece on his blog exposing ALEC, and criticizing Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker [R], and Wisconsin Republicans. I believe that Professor Cronon was the first to expose this connection between ALEC and the recent anti-labor laws introduced in Michigan, Wisconsin, and other states. ALEC is a subsidiary of The Heritage Foundation, and is funded in part by the Koch brothers. The Heritage Foundationis one of the Koch brothers foundations.
These people are going after these professors for political reasons, nothing more. They are, it seems, attempting to frighten people in order to stop the free flow of information. This is fascism.
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