Eric Schmidt is kind of right

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Eric Schmidt, editor of the Badger Herald Editorial Page, recently wrote a column criticizing the Capital Times’ ed board, which had penned an editorial decrying the Department of Commerce’s negligence of state industry. Gotta hand it to Schmitty (he didn’t say I could call him that). The editorial was weak.

In a few hundred words, the Times vaguely refers to an unsubstantiated disdain for the DOC, which it says has engaged “in years of the gimmickry of cut-rate economic operations.” What does this mean?

“After sending the governor and everyone else off on foreign trade missions, after cheering on free-trade policies and misguided approaches to taxes and incentives, the Department of Commerce is presiding over rapid and devastating deindustrialization.”

First, it would be very interesting to hear of the role the Wisconsin Department of Commerce plays in determining trade policy with other countries.

Second, the ed board interestingly chose not to cite the company’s reason for shutting down the plant: they’ve been having trouble selling their product. Also, they believed that running the plant was simply not efficient anymore. Don’t take a company’s word for granted, however, given the Time’s lack of analysis, it’s hard for the average reader to delve any deeper. Simply put, the Times didn’t offer any solutions. It alluded to failed economic policies, but didn’t bother substituting Doyle’s policies with any “progressive” alternatives. Tax breaks, state contracts…what?

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