There's a really touching story about this -- and an antidote to Scott Walker's Wisconsin. UW is a land grant university, which means that it has extension offices serving every county, and one of its main purposes is to research and disseminate the world's-best research on all agricultural matters for farmers in its state. The land grant university system, created by the Morrill Act signed by Abraham Lincoln in 1862 during the Civil War, is one of the major reasons for the United States' agricultural dominance, and one of the reasons the Midwestern and Great Plains university systems are so strong and broad-based, since they reached farmers on their farms, and those grateful farmers sent their kids to learn Shakespeare and farming at the university. (If you know a farmer who went to a land grant university, he TOTALLY knows more Shakespeare than you, and this is one of the reasons the Midwest is great fun.)
So the story about Warfarin goes, a farmer's cows kept dropping dead, bleeding out in the field for no reason. So he loads one of the carcasses up in his pickup, drives to Madison, and hauls them onto the steps of the ag college, and says, "My cows keep dying. Tell me why." And the professors are only a little taken aback, because they're a land grant university and literally their whole purpose is to improve agriculture in the state of Wisconsin, so they study the cow and go to the fields and do a bunch of research and eventually figure out, it's the clover, and it kills rats at low doses and cows at high doses due to its anticoagulant properties, which can be harnessed for humans with clotting problems. The Wisconsin Alumni Research Fund funds research into this as both a rat poison and a human medicine, and Warfarin is the ultimate result (which is both a rat poison and a human medicine). But it comes from the trust that regular, everyday farmers had in the land grant university at UW, and the trust the the scientists at UW had in the fact that farmers would find interesting problems that they could solve, and the trust that the Wisconsin Alumni Research Fund had that the problems UW scientists and Wisconsin farmers found were worth solving and would help the state. And the feeling that the UW system belonged not just to the moneyed sons of the merchant class, but to the farmers and regular folk all around the state, who could drop dead cows on the steps of the ag college and demand a solution.
Scott Walker wants to break that trust and that whole-state spirit animating the UW system, but Warfarin stands as a monument to what a state university that is owned, loved, and trusted by the people of its state can do. And if you take Warfarin, you're participating in a great experiment started by Abraham Lincoln in the depths of the Civil War to extend the knowledge of the liberal university into every tiny corner of every state, and to make us richer in resources, yes, but also in mind and spirit thereby. A liberal arts education is the education needed to be free, and Lincoln was determined it would reach every county in the entire country, providing both practical agricultural and technical information, and the habits of mind that created and protected a free people -- the reason the US started with public universities (and public libraries) at all, beginning with UNC (which just tore down Silent Sam), to teach its citizens how to be free. And that is why your local farmers know Shakespeare, and that is why UW provided the world with Warfarin, and that is why we can't allow public land grant universities and everything they stand for to be swept under by false libertarian ideals that reject the greatness of community for the false idol of individualism.