'Recall' is the most damning word that can be uttered in the office of an elected official. This semester, thousands of Madison residents and the powerful fiscal conservative group Citizens for Responsible Government did their best to unseat Cieslewicz, citing the mayor's so-called 'anti-business' policies??, particularly the new smoking ban.
While some claimed he had lost his 'mojo,' Cieslewicz was spared'??and rightfully so'when the recall petition drive failed to reach its goal last week. Meanwhile, the mayor's office asserts that 4,700 new jobs have been created since 2003 and smoking ban opponents have failed to produce hard, credible evidence that Madison businesses are being damaged.
This fall also witnessed the mayor's Halloween comeback. Although Cieslewicz refuses to admit it, the party on State Street was largely successful this year. We attribute this to both the common sense of partiers and, more deservedly, new city-implemented safeguards.
The September release of an investigative report into UW-Madison administrator Paul Barrows' extended paid-absence from Bascom Hall brought both clarity to the matter and unfortunate scrutiny to this university. The report alleged that Barrows' sexually harassed multiple members of the UW-Madison faculty and staff. Former Dean of Students Luoluo Hong defined Barrows' effect on her work environment as 'toxic and hostile.'
Conservative legislators reacted to the report by calling special hearings and demanding another investigation into the decision to continue to pay Barrows his $170,000 salary while searching for other employment. At a time when state support for the UW System is dwindling, students cannot afford to be negatively effected by the transgressions of school officials.
UW-Madison's research achievements and world-class faculty in the field of stem cell research brought national attention once again??, this semester, when the National Institutes of Health selected UW's WiCell Research Institute as the first and only federal stem cell bank.
Stem cell research advocates also succeeded in vetoing an anti-cloning bill that included a provision which would ban embryonic stem cell research in Wisconsin.
After 16 years as head coach of Wisconsin football, Barry Alvarez is stepping away from the sidelines, leaving his team in the hands of defensive coordinator Bret Bielema. After leading three teams to Rose Bowl victories, Alvarez is the winningest coach in UW history. Although the university has commissioned a bronze statue of Alvarez, he is not yet gone. We look forward to witnessing athletic director Alvarez's achievements in the years ahead.
Student activist, former Associated Students of Madison member and candidate for Dane County Board, Ashok Kumar graced the pages of this newspaper throughout the semester, most notably for his message''U smell like poo''on the lampoon Facebook profile of Chancellor John Wiley. The profile was part of a questionable Student Labor Action Coalition strategy to compel Wiley to adopt a stricter apparel licensing policy. SLAC was successful in as much that Wiley announced a new labor-friendly pilot program to be launched next fall. While some on this campus have come out in absolute opposition to Kumar's candidacy for county board, we are willing to let the campaign develop and make a better informed decision in the spring.