Latest Viewpoints

Rumors aside, Doyle doesn't look ready to pack it in.

Governor Jim Doyle may be down in the polls, but during a recent economic forum at UW-Madison, he didn't look like a guy that wants out of the Governor's Mansion. He looked like a guy who was ready to take on all comers next year, despite some chatter that he won't seek a third term.

The Next Blog du Jour submitted by Salli Martyniak

I've been swamped but that doesn't mean I haven't give thought to writing this blog — but thinking and doing are definitely two different things. While thinking (rather than just doing), I also seriously pondered about the next "blog du jour" — and there were many.

A Different Type of Gaming | submitted by Michael Gay

I hadn't thought much about gaming (formerly known as video games in IT Luddite circles) until a couple of years ago when I saw the "Last Lecture." I have to admit that I watched the video for its personal message (and a powerful one at that), but the side of my brain where economic development lingers realized that this prof was onto something (using games to teach) and he was visionary in his thoughts and approach.

Historic Opportunity for Health Care Reform

Once-in-a-lifetime opportunities are too important to miss, and Robert Kraig, program director for Citizen Action of Wisconsin, believes the health care reform debate in Congress is just such an opportunity.

Your Home is an Asset, but Not an Investment.

In the past two articles, I wrote about the basic starting point for the financial planning process and investments. I would be remiss not to affirm with you that a home is a valuable cornerstone to your financial life, but it is not an investment.

State Budget: Businesses Escape Sales Tax Nightmare

To many (mostly conservative) critics, the budget that passed out of the Legislature's Joint Finance Committee in late May is a fiscal abomination, but Wayne Corey has relatively few complaints. One would think the executive director of Wisconsin Independent Businesses would hop on the abomination bandwagon, but he says the budget is noteworthy for what it does not contain as much as for what it does.

How about a Wonderful Life Moment for Dinys

By now, most of you know the wolf may be at the door for Diny's Jewelers, a 26-year-old business that is trying to remain open with a huge hopefully-not-going-out-of-business sale. They've slashed their prices up to 70%.

The Invisible Nonprofit | submitted by Salli Martyniak

I spent the last two days at the second annual nonprofit summit sponsored by the Wisconsin Nonprofits Association. Yes, just like other sectors have their associations — builders and contractors, lawyers and accountants — so do nonprofits. But in the case of Wisconsin nonprofits, it's been a long time coming.

Investing in Visitors: Growing the Pie

Imagine having a community where visitors like to flock and help the locals out with their tax burden. Then imagine leveraging it fully.

Madison has the first point, but it's lagging on the second and probably will continue to lag until the economy rebounds.

Part II: Knowing the Alphabet for the Portfolio as well.

In the last blog, I wrote about the basic starting point for the financial planning process. This time, I write to articulate some key fundamental items that relate to investing. Again, like last week, we are starting with a foundation. An appreciation of these concepts is key to having a basic understanding of the behavior of investment markets.

Controlling the Identity Theft “Pandemic”

Millions of small businesses now are subject to the U.S. Federal Trade Commission’s “Red Flag” identity theft regulations, and they should not delay in acting to authenticate the people they do business with.

Let’s get acquainted, and then talk... | submitted by Salli Martyniak

I am Salli Martyniak, president of Forward Community Investments, a statewide nonprofit loan fund that provides loans and strategic financial guidance to nonprofit organizations across this state. You’ll hear more about us later, but what’s important for you to know is that my job, my passion, is working with nonprofits.

Carpe Diem!

Yes, not only is 2009 well under way, it is proving to be a historic time of significant proportion. It is changing the way people think, work and act – both in business and personally. The direction in these few paragraphs is not to give any secret to success; however, the sad truth is that many people are either looking over the next horizon or the last one for help, when the real answers lie in the here and now.

You Have to Know the Alphabet First

I remember a quote that read “One must first learn the alphabet before they know the greatest truths.” I don’t recall who said it, but today it seems more important than ever. We are bombarded in all areas of our lives with complex information that lacks reference to any foundation. We are forced to try to translate something without first being able to speak the language.

In Business magazine