I know this is later than last minute, hyping a Sept. 14 event in a publication dated Sept. 15, but you Thursday readers can still take advantage of Isthmus' latest Pint & Policy discussion at Club Majestic from 6 to 8 p.m. The topic is how Madison, as it grows like a weed, can avoid falling prey to the urban woes that have beset larger cities - Milwaukee, for instance. On the panel doing the discussing, to be moderated by Isthmus editor Marc Eisen, are former Mayor Paul Soglin; Milwaukee state Representative Tamara Grigsby; journalist James Rowen, former chief of staff to mayors of Milwaukee and Madison; economist and consultant Kay Plantes; and Chamber of Commerce president Jennifer Alexander.
Moving along into real time, who flipped the switch last week, taking us from summer into fall seemingly overnight? It wasn't just the abrupt change in weather; we also had the appearance of the autumnal harbingers - football, symphony and elections. The Madison Symphony exhibited midseason form during its season opener last weekend, while the Badgers did not. However, we expect the footballers to use the first few games to get in synch, whereas the orchestra has to be there on time and working together at the first drop of the baton. As for the elections, last Tuesday's primary cleared the deck for the serious clash in November.
I don't know how seriously you can take a politician who won't talk to the press during a campaign, even if he regards it as hostile. Freelancer Doug Hissom faced that conundrum while preparing his story "Seeing Double" for this week's Isthmus. Hissom worked for many years at Milwaukee's Shepherd Express in a variety of senior editorial positions. Republican gubernatorial candidate Mark Green had something against Hissom or Isthmus, a pretty mysterious position for someone promoting himself as a moderate and desirous of challenging an incumbent.
Perhaps Green would have talked to David Blaska, a self-professed neoconservative and ex-county supervisor now dabbling in authorship. Unfortunately for the silent one, Blaska was up at the Sauk County Fairgrounds jousting (and maybe tipping a few) with the left wing of the Democratic Party at this year's rendition of Bob Fest, a political picnic held in honor of progressive Fighting Bob La Follette (a Republican). You can read Blaska's opinionated observation of the proceedings in this issue.
Ah yes, it is not for nothing that they call this the silly season.