Are MacIver, WPRI and AFP Ready for the Right Wing Toga Party?

Conservatives, it’s time to tear off those ill-fitting suits, the sheer Sarah Palin knock-offs, and get this party started.

Two of Wisconsin’€™s leading right wing organizations, the Wisconsin Policy Research Institute and the MacIver Institute, are members the State Policy Network, a national group that helps organizations push out anti-public education information and the lunatic corporate pap of Hell’€™s resident economist, Milton Friedman.

This weekend, SPN began its its annual meeting for its partners like WPRI and MacIver. In addition to an online presentation by Americans (read: Republicans) for Prosperity, the four-day factless-fest will be highlighted by an old fashioned Toga Party, according to an email invitation to the event obtained by Wonkette, one of One Wisconsin Now’€™s favorite blogs.

So who funds State Policy Network? According to Sourcewatch and People for the American Way, SPN gets its support from the cornerstones of the gazillion-dollar right wing message and propaganda empire: The Bradley Foundation, the Olin Foundation, DeVos and Castle Rock.

It’€™s also tightly intertwined with Alliance for School Choice and School Choice Wisconsin. ASC’€™s National Project Director for States is former GOP Assembly Speaker Scott Jensen, who as Cory Liebmann unearthed, is closely aligned with MacIver. MacIver denied Jensen’€™s involvement, but Liebmann’€™s research showed Jensen as the author of the MacIver announcement materials.

On SPN’€™s website for Wisconsin, it lists MacIver and WPRI as members. It also lists ‘€œother organizations,’€ ostensibly as a guide of other organizations rightwingers might want to visit for information. Listed: Americans for Prosperity, Freedom Works, Pax American Institute, Taxpayers Network Inc. and’€¦drum roll’€¦ the Wisconsin Taxpayers Association.

It’€™s the same old, same old coincidence. Right wing groups include WISTAX in the cabal of good resources for conservatives and ask WISTAX head Todd Berry to speak at their anti-tax events. WISTAX information consistently reinforces the conservative agenda on tax policy and public investment. WISTAX board members past and present are also on the boards of these other right wing groups and pro-corporate business leaders who donate overwhelmingly to Republicans ‘€“ but WISTAX is ‘€œindependent.’€

If SPN needs a DJ for its tax-cuts-for-rich-guys party, maybe they should invite Terrence Wall.

Toga. Toga. Toga.

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Scot Ross has served as Executive Director of One Wisconsin Now & the Institute since 2007.