The gist of the rather histrionic and wildly inaccurate column was that he was sorely vexed by Dan Bice, reporter for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Mitchell was so beside himself that he even felt that Bice should lose his job because of his coverage of the Walkergate investigation and subsequent trials.
The op-ed struck me as very odd, and not only for its blatant falsehoods and inaccuracies.
Walkergate was closed months ago. So why was Mitchell resurrecting the ghost of John Doe now?
At first, I though it was Mitchell, who is one of the leading profiteers pushing for the privatization of education, lashing back at Bice for breaking the story on how the Bradley Foundation has spent more than $31 million in the effort to privatize education in Wisconsin.
But then, as I kept rereading the article, I realized what Mitchell was attempting to do.
To see what Mitchell's objective was, first look at what he actually was writing.
First Mitchell starts kvetching about the fact that the paper reported that the authorities had raided Cindy Archer's home and other story lines related to the ongoing Walkergate investigation. Apparently in Mitchell's pea brain, news should not be reported, especially if it has bad connotations for Scott Walker.
Mitchell then goes on to start whining about the supposed leaks that were happening in the case. This again is so much malarkey, since some of the greatest legal leaders in the state of Wisconsin, including retired Supreme Court Justice Janine Geske, said that the investigation was on the up and up. Furthermore, and a point that Mitchell studiously avoids, any "leaks" were actually coming from the lawyers of Walker's cronies as they stood trial.
Then Mitchell gets to the heart of his grievance:
The Journal Sentinel’s stunning malfeasance should not diminish a broader issue, namely, that state law even allowed the out-of-control John Doe to occur. The chaotic process, overseen by District Attorney John Chisholm and presiding Judge Neal Nettesheim, should prompt a legislative review of the statutory authority that was so clearly abused in this matter. A supposed premise for secret John Doe proceedings involves the need to protect individuals from selective, incriminating leaks and innuendo. While many of those vulnerable to leaks have done nothing wrong, they lawfully are prevented from responding in public. The result, when the likes of Bice and Stanley are involved, mocks what supposedly is an independent, impartial judicial proceeding.So, what Mitchell was griping about is that Walkergate happened at all and that the paper, and Bice in particular, would dare to cover it. But why bring it up now, two months after the investigation was closed?
As I noted, Mitchell is a leading advocate for the privatization of our schools so that he and others like him can profiteer off our kids. Unfortunately for us, Walker is advancing his cause a long way.
And now Walker is making it even more obvious that he is running for president, despite all of his disqualifications. Mitchell would be in full support of this, since he could become even more wealthy at our expenses and the expense of our children's education.
However, as Walker keeps trying to find some traction for his national race, he is having a lot of problems. Walker is continuously getting bogged down in his own abhorrently poor record of job creation and the shameful way he continues to drive the state's economy into the ground.
And casting its shadow over all that is the blatant corruption of him and his administration, such as the recent push to allow Walker to sell off public assets without even going through a bidding process. Adding to the self-smearing is the fact that his staffers just keep running afoul of the law.
Well, apparently, the specter of John Doe is still tarnishing Walker's already
tainted image. So, Walker's handlers, like Mitchell, apparently feel that if they smear the messenger enough, that this will blur the fact that Walker and his minions were up to their armpits in illegal and unethical activities.
But their plan won't work.
First of all, Bice and the paper didn't break all the stories and they didn't make up the stories. We already know the truth and we will keep on telling it. The John Doe investigation might be dead, but the reasons he existed still are there and thus they can never really kill John Doe. They can't kill Doe, because Walker is Doe, and no matter how many campaign stops he makes and how fast or how far he flies around to get to his campaign stops, he can't escape himself.
And if they haven't figured it out yet, those of who know the truth, well, we're just not going away.
Or it could be that I'm totally off base and the reason Mitchell wrote his bizarre op-ed piece was to set up a defense for a big story that might be coming down the pike at Walker.