Showing posts with label Wisconsin Protests. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Wisconsin Protests. Show all posts

Nov 21, 2013

Club for Growth Is Malignant Bacteria in the Body Politic

Club for Is a Malignant Growth
Brendan Fischer has a nice wrap-up on David Koch, Americans for Prosperity, Republican Governors Association, Wisconsin Club for Growth, Eric O’Keefe et al in the latest probe into a probe looking into possible criminal corruption supervised by  retired Appeals Court Judge Gregory Peterson.

Nothing to see here is the GOP line, for now, though Wisconsin Club for Growth's Eric O’Keefe frack you to Judge Peterson and his subpoena are going to change that pretty soon.

John Doe proceedings are subject to a secrecy order, one presumes a subpoena serviced to O’Keefe is no exception. [O'Keffe, should check out the Hurley, Burish and Stanton, S.C. site at which they cite the secrecy of John Doe probe as an effort to "prevent testimony that may be mistaken or untrue or irrelevant from becoming public." It won't cost O'Keffe any money.]

But there is quite much to see here.

The Capital Times offers a summary of recent development of the man who would be governor, president or felon.

Time Magazine, writer Zeke J. Miller and Scott Walker teamed up for yet another puff piece about Walker's possible run for president [he's not going to run, we contended for years.]From the Cap Times:

Dark Money Funds Underground Movements Fronted by GOP
BloggingBlue's Zach Wisniewski calls Scott Walker a liar, pointing to an interview he did with reporters last week explaining why he dropped out of college. He claimed he did so because he needed to get a job to take care of his children. Problem is, Wisniewski points out, Walker dropped out of Marquette in 1990. His first child was born in 1994.

Blogger James Rowen also points to the same set of facts after reading Walker making the same claims in Time magazine. He posts an editorial that appeared in the student paper, the Marquette Tribune, over the future governor's illegal campaigning for student body president.

Speaking of the governor, Bruce Murphy's Urban Milwaukee column insists that the latest John Doe investigation spells real trouble for Scott Walker. Murphy presents a detailed analysis of Walker's staff's previous campaign violations while county executive and how it all plays into his gubernatorial election financing.

Sep 17, 2013

Wisconsin Pays, Scott Walker Spends

Scott Walker on tape making pledges to billionaire, Diane Hendricks
Hendricks is Walker's largest donor, along with the Koch brothers
In March 2011, Scott Walker pushed and signed a law in which he gives himself the power to mandate Wisconsin taxpayers pay up cash for 37 new Walker political appointments. (See Stein, Marley. Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, March 17, 2011; and Walker power grabs)

This was only the first in the train wrecks that do everything from paying off cronies with taxpayer money, to giving Scott Walker the power to sell off virtually any public land or facility to moneyed interests.

No consultations with the Wisconsin people, no campaigning on these radical policies; Walker is selling out Wisconsin and I would not be surprised to see Walker put the state capitol, what used to be known as the people's house, on the chopping block.

The examples of Walker's public corruption are legion.

The latest spend-thrift spree of Walker's is his tax-payer subsidy to Scott Suder, Walker's co-conspirator with ALEC and the Koch front group, Americans for Prosperity.

"In his new (Wisconsin Public Service Commission) job, Suder will earn $94,000 a year — an 88 percent increase over the $49,943 he made as a legislator. He'll be in charge of the agency divisions responsible for water compliance and consumer affairs," reports Uppity Wisconsinn.

All the while Suder and other Republicans continue to illegally ignore Open Records requests.

In the latest outrage, "Wisconsin Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen has taken the unprecedented step of asserting that a state legislator cannot be held accountable for refusing to disclose public records in response to a lawful open records request by the Center for Media and Democracy."

It's Republican rule; and the people for whom they work are not the Wisconsin people so Republicans and Walker keep their business secret from the people.

With disdain for the Wisconsin people, in favor of a small groups of moneyed interests and cronies, is it any wonder Scott Walker has created a structural (built in) deficit and ruined the state budget by amassing a state debt that reaches record levels in the 2013-15 budget, as noted by State Senator Kathleen Vinehout (D-Alma).

See also RE Sen. Vinehout's budget-deficit analysis, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel simply refuses to take "yes" for an answer.

Schools, lakes, cemeteries for military veterans, the environment and people take huge hits while Walker and Republicans pocket huge pay-outs. The list of what Scott Walker is selling out is too long to fully note here.

As for that 250,000 new jobs promise Scott Walker campaigned on, Walker now says "it's really not about jobs."

The only people making out are Walker cronies getting paid by you.

Dec 6, 2012

Wisconsin's ALEC State Chair Seeks to Amend Constitution to Require ID at Polls

Republicans just admitted their voter ID obstruction law is unconstitutional.

So, naturally the remedy to keep unwanted voters [uppity blacks, Latinos and others passing themselves off as good Americans] from voting is to change our Wisconsin Constitution, the foundation that well protects our right to vote.

Brendan Fischer has the story at PR Watch.

Republicans continue their march, going Soviet.

Apr 17, 2012

ALEC Disbands Task Force Responsible for Bills Scott Walker Signed

By Brendan Fischer

Under growing public pressure and the departure of multiple corporate members, the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) has announced it is disbanding the Task Force that has been responsible for some of the organization's most controversial pieces of legislation. Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker introduced several bills approved by that Task Force when he was a legislator in the 1990s and early 2000s.

Aug 9, 2011

Updated - Election Day in Wisconsin

Solidarity for Wisconsin families
Update V: Live recall election results at Journal-Sentinel and Mother Jones.

Update IV: Gilbert Brown, Famed Green Bay Packer, Urges Wisconsin Voters to Recall Republicans - We Are Wisconsin released a robocall campaign on Tuesday featuring mammoth former Green Bay Packers defensive lineman Gilbert Brown. The call urges voters to replace six Republican state Senators who supported Governor Scott Walker's controversial budget bill:

"Hello this is Gilbert Brown, defensive lineman for the '97 Super Bowl champion Green Bay Packers, calling on behalf of We Are Wisconsin. I have a message for you about Tuesday's election, I know a little bit about playing defense and right now it is time to defend Wisconsin. We are holding the line, putting our children's education before big corporate tax giveaways. It is up to voters like you to make the difference. Please gather your friends and neighbors and go to the polls on Tuesday from 7 am to 8 pm and support Nancy Nusbaum for Senate."

Update III: Walker signs gerrymandering bills redrawing political boundaries, hours before the deadline. "It is now clear that Gov. Walker signed these redistricting maps into law in a manner intended to hide his actions with only one goal in mind: giving himself and his fellow Republicans a monopoly on power in our state and dodging accountability for their anti-middle-class extremism," said Assembly Minority Leader Peter Barca (D-Kenosha).

Update II: From a Fond du Lac voter this morning: "I wonder if I’m the only person who gets so upset at poll workers having to ask for picture ID.  The man behind me in line, said 'Well, there’s no trouble here, but in Milwaukee (read black), there’s thousands of cases of vote fraud.'  I told him that’s not true, and asked if he could even conceive of people wanting to vote so much that they would actually commit fraud (that’s not the right word anyway).  I told him it’s been my experience that you cannot get people to vote easily enough. I think people just  believe what they are told, don’t question anything and march in lockstep.  I guess he’s a Republican."

Update: Presidential-election turn-out level in Fond du Lac. At Rosenow Elementary School, 385 people had already voted at 10:20 A.M, with a 30-minute wait in line.

For continuous updates, see Uppity Wisconsin and look back here.

The order of the day is: Get Out the Vote [GOTV].

Today is election day for Wisconsin recalls.

In one race rated a toss-up, Rep. Sandy Pasch (Whitefish Bay) has volunteers already lining up outside the doors this morning to challenge Sen. Alberta Darling in Senate district 8 just north of Milwaukee.

Because of the enormous outpouring, an insider this morning is now saying Pasch is likely to knock off Darling.
Democracy is coming
For continuous updates, see Uppity Wisconsin and Blue Cheddar, TeamsterNation and look back here.
The order of the day is: Get Out the Vote [GOTV].

As a life-long Wisconsin citizen I can tell you the recall race for Senate district 18 (Sen. Randy Hopper's (R-Empire) seat) is a bellwether for the other five recall elections in  Republican state senate districts, all of which one should bear in mind were gerrymandered after the 2000 Census to stay Republican.

Hooper narrowly defeated Jessica King by 163 votes for the same seat in 2008, and Hopper is facing King again in this historically leaning Republican area.

Candidates - 2008 Race             Votes    Percent

Randy Hopper (R)                         41,904   50.05%
Jessica King (D)                            41,741   49.86%
Enough signature were gathered to recall Randy Hopper in just a matter of weeks after the recall registration date [from which citizens have 60 days to gather recall signatures], far early of the deadline for the required 15,269 signatures and petition to be delivered to the GAB on the deadline date of May 2.

The Wisconsin Government Accountability Board (GAB) staff verified 23,127 signatures to recall Hopper.

Sources close to the recall effort told me that after that, signatures gathered by the 100s of the recall volunteers also served effectively as campaigning for voters hostile to Randy Hopper for the majority of the 60-days period prior to May 2.

All of the signatures are open to the public on the GAB site.

Some 55 percent of Hopper's 2008 vote total was gathered in recall signatures against Hopper alone.

Jun 15, 2011

Corrupt Open Meeting Ruling Steels Resolve of Citizens

Ismael R. Ozanne v. Jeff Fitzgerald/State v. Circuit Court for Dane County

is a dark scandal in the Wisconsin justice system.

The four corrupt partisans on the Wisconsin Supreme Court handed the GOP the victory that is has been clamoring for this week.

But the recall and family protection movement will only strengthen.

Chief Justice Shirley Abrahamson's dissent blasted the corrupt partisan ruling: The majority " ... reached a pre-determined conclusion not based on the facts and the law, which undermines the majority's ultimate decision."

The majority justices "make their own findings of fact, mischaracterize the parties' arguments, misinterpret statutes, minimize (if not eliminate) Wisconsin constitutional guarantees, and misstate case law, appearing to silently overrule case law dating back to at least 1891," Abrahamson wrote. [MJS]

The case is Ozanne et al v. Fitzgerald, Ellis et al [Case No.: 2011AP000613-LV Ismael R. Ozanne v. Jeff Fitzgerald and Case No.: 2011AP000765-W State v. Circuit Court for Dane County].

From Blogging Blue, State Sen. Chris Larson had this to say: “It is a shame that the partisan agenda of special interest groups and big corporations has seeped into the very foundation of Wisconsin’s court system,” said Sen. Chris Larson (D–Milwaukee).

In March of this year, Republicans forced passage of Act 10 despite their actions violating Senate Rules and Procedures. Act 10 was the first step in Governor Walker’s unprecedented attack on basic worker rights and the middle class.

“Today is a dark day for Wisconsin,” said Sen. Larson. “This legislation and the subsequent ruling by the Wisconsin Supreme Court will undo over 50 years of progress in labor working with management to move Wisconsin forward.”

As Governor Walker and his rubberstamp Republican legislators have already made clear, this attack on worker’s rights was politically-motivated, not fiscal in nature, and will not be tolerated by the People of Wisconsin.

“We are reminded today what is at stake in Wisconsin,” said Sen. Larson. “Wisconsin is at the front of an unprecedented assault on workers and the middle class. Wisconsin voters

From One Wisconsin Now:

I remain here at the Capitol with thousands of other activists protesting Governor Walker and the Republican's continued assault on Wisconsin's way of life, and we have just received news that the four conservative member of our Supreme Court have aided and abetted Gov. Scott Walker's crime against 175,000 working Wisconsinites by overturning the lower court and allowing his disastrous attack on the rights of workers to stand as law.

But we remain unbowed. United. Standing for workers and Wisconsin's middle class.

Do you stand with us?

The disastrous agenda of Walker and the Republicans is fueling an unprecedented mobilization and awoken the middle class to the horrors of government bought and paid for by corporate special interests.

The fight goes on. I pledge that One Wisconsin Now will continue to aggressively fight for the values we share -- of decency, of caring for the least among us, for equal rights, for quality schools and the right to collectively bargain in the workplace.

Do you stand with us? If so, please help our efforts with a contribution tonight. I know that we have asked for your help many times, but you have all been so steadfast with your support so far. I know I can count on you again. Stand with us and speak out with one voice, and tell Governor Walker and his conservatives lackeys that this aggression against Wisconsin's working families will not stand.

May 11, 2011

COWS ThinkTank: Public employees not the cause of Wisconsin's budget woes

From the Center on Wisconsin Strategy (COWS):

A new policy brief from COWS offers data on Wisconsin's public-sector workers. They are neither the 'haves' Governor Scott Walker makes them out to be, nor are they the cause of Wisconsin's budget shortfall.

The brief, Wisconsin's Public Employees: A Foundation for Quality of Life in the State, presents information answering key questions:

•Are public-sector workers overpaid? No.
•Is the public sector bloated in Wisconsin? No.
•How do public employees' concessions affect take home pay? The less you earn, the more you lose.
•Public-sector workers: The source of Wisconsin's budget deficit? No.

Some 383,300 Wisconsin workers hold full- or part-time jobs in the public sector, and three of four of these workers are employed by local units of government. Public workers provide the education, public safety, and other public infrastructure that is a foundation for quality of life in the state.

Apr 24, 2011

Noam on Madison and the World

Wisconsin is still Ground Zero

By Noam Chomsky in TomGram

The democracy uprising in the Arab world has been a spectacular display of courage, dedication, and commitment by popular forces -- coinciding, fortuitously, with a remarkable uprising of tens of thousands in support of working people and democracy in Madison, Wisconsin, and other U.S. cities. If the trajectories of revolt in Cairo and Madison intersected, however, they were headed in opposite directions: in Cairo toward gaining elementary rights denied by the dictatorship, in Madison towards defending rights that had been won in long and hard struggles and are now under severe attack.

Each is a microcosm of tendencies in global society, following varied courses. There are sure to be far-reaching consequences of what is taking place both in the decaying industrial heartland of the richest and most powerful country in human history, and in what President Dwight Eisenhower called "the most strategically important area in the world" -- "a stupendous source of strategic power" and "probably the richest economic prize in the world in the field of foreign investment," in the words of the State Department in the 1940s, a prize that the U.S. intended to keep for itself and its allies in the unfolding New World Order of that day. ...

Those with a sense of irony may recall that Benjamin Franklin, one of the leading figures of the Enlightenment, warned that the newly liberated colonies should be wary of allowing Germans to immigrate, because they were too swarthy; Swedes as well. Into the twentieth century, ludicrous myths of Anglo-Saxon purity were common in the U.S., including among presidents and other leading figures. Racism in the literary culture has been a rank obscenity; far worse in practice, needless to say. It is much easier to eradicate polio than this horrifying plague, which regularly becomes more virulent in times of economic distress.

I do not want to end without mentioning another externality that is dismissed in market systems: the fate of the species. Systemic risk in the financial system can be remedied by the taxpayer, but no one will come to the rescue if the environment is destroyed. That it must be destroyed is close to an institutional imperative. Business leaders who are conducting propaganda campaigns to convince the population that anthropogenic global warming is a liberal hoax understand full well how grave is the threat, but they must maximize short-term profit and market share. If they don't, someone else will.

This vicious cycle could well turn out to be lethal. To see how grave the danger is, simply have a look at the new Congress in the U.S., propelled into power by business funding and propaganda. Almost all are climate deniers. They have already begun to cut funding for measures that might mitigate environmental catastrophe. Worse, some are true believers; for example, the new head of a subcommittee on the environment who explained that global warming cannot be a problem because God promised Noah that there will not be another flood.

If such things were happening in some small and remote country, we might laugh. Not when they are happening in the richest and most powerful country in the world. And before we laugh, we might also bear in mind that the current economic crisis is traceable in no small measure to the fanatic faith in such dogmas as the efficient market hypothesis, and in general to what Nobel laureate Joseph Stiglitz, 15 years ago, called the "religion" that markets know best -- which prevented the central bank and the economics profession from taking notice of an $8 trillion housing bubble that had no basis at all in economic fundamentals, and that devastated the economy when it burst.

All of this, and much more, can proceed as long as the Muashar doctrine prevails. As long as the general population is passive, apathetic, diverted to consumerism or hatred of the vulnerable, then the powerful can do as they please, and those who survive will be left to contemplate the outcome.

- Noam Chomsky is Institute Professor emeritus in the MIT Department of Linguistics and Philosophy. He is the author of numerous best-selling political works. His latest books are a new edition of Power and Terror, The Essential Chomsky (edited by Anthony Arnove), a collection of his writings on politics and on language from the 1950s to the present, Gaza in Crisis, with Ilan Pappé, and Hopes and Prospects, also available as an audiobook. This piece is adapted from a talk given in Amsterdam in March.

Feb 25, 2011

Massive Madison Rally Saturday for Working Families

- Live video coverage of rally -

Update: The Walker-Koch tapes (audio and text), and Citizen's Criminal Complaint Against Gov. Scott Walker

There is a constant presence at the Capital, inside and out. Crowds could swell to over 100,000 people.

Labor tents are sprawled around the capital square.

Would-be attendees can come at any time during day and night.

Some highlights and happenings

10:30 am  Protest at Koch Bros. Lobby Office; 10 East Doty St.
11:00 am SEIU meet-up at the UW-Madison Memorial Union.
11:00 LGBTQA Rally and march in support of Wisconsin families
12:00 pm TAA Teach-in: The Politics of the Wisconsin Labor Struggle
1:00 pm NAACP Rally at the State Capitol-Hilton Morona Terrace Hotel
1:00 pm Concert at the Capitol – performances by Tom Morello, Bascom Hill, Michael O'Brien, UW Alumni Band, Sam Frederic, Peter Yarrow
1:30 pm SEIU march from the Inn on the Park on the Square (22 S Carroll Street in Madison) to the rally
3:00 pm Rally to Save The American Way – Master of Ceremonies Brad Whitford

Some Rally Info and News Resources

Feb 24, 2011

Watchdog calls for criminal probe of Gov Walker over 'Koch' tape

Protesters at Koch lobbying office in Madison
A national campaign finance watchdog, the Public Campaign Action Fund, sent a letter to the Dane County (WI) District Attorney and Wisconsin’s Government Accountability Board (GAB) today urging that they open concurrent investigations into Gov. Scott Walker’s (R-Wisc.) possible double violations of state campaign finance and ethics statutes.

Washington, D.C.—National campaign finance watchdog Public Campaign Action Fund sent a letter to the Dane County (WI) District Attorney and Wisconsin’s Government Accountability Board (GAB) today urging that they open concurrent investigations into Gov. Scott Walker’s (R-Wisc.) possible double violations of state campaign finance and ethics statutes. The letter is in response to yesterday’s release of a taped phone call between Gov. Walker and a person he thought was out-of-state, billionaire campaign donor David Koch.

The group asked the District Attorney and GAB to look at two questions:

1) Did Gov. Walker illegally solicit political expenditures for independent spending to benefit Republican Senators from swing districts?

2) Did Gov. Walker illegally solicit donations from the state capitol using state resources?

“Governor Walker, while on state grounds supposedly doing his job, thought he was speaking to out-of-state billionaire David Koch, and over the course of that conversation he asked Koch to spend money to help Republican Senators from electorally vulnerable districts,” said David Donnelly, national campaigns director for Public Campaign Action Fund. “The District Attorney of Dane County and the Government Accountability Board have concurrent jurisdiction over this matter, and both should immediately investigate whether Walker broke two state laws.”

The letters were faxed this afternoon to both offices. Download the letter to the District Attorney and the GAB [at Public Campaign Action Fund] .

The letter concludes:

“No one should be above the law. Governor Walker’s conduct in this reported conversation indicates he does not believe the Wisconsin campaign finance statutes or ethics rules apply to him. We strongly urge you to open an investigation into these violations to restore the confidence of Wisconsin’s citizens that theirs is a government of laws.”

“Of course, the bigger story here is the ease with which major donors can gain access to Gov. Walker,” said Donnelly. “While he can’t be bothered to talk to his political opponents, he found twenty minutes to spend with a wealthy oil tycoon. It’s a shameful statement on our broken political system.”

On Tuesday, blogger/reporter Ian Murphy released a recorded phone call between Gov. Walker and himself, pretending to be David Koch. During the discussion, Walker makes references to ways Koch could help state Republicans deal with the public opposition to Walker’s budget. Download the full transcript at Public Campaign Action Fund.

Feb 23, 2011

Scott Walker Is Attacking the Livelihood of Wisconsin Families

It is God-awful bad.

Now is the time for every elected federal, state, county and municipal official to get out in the street.

We have a governor who can blithely tell the state in prime time that he has no compunction about firing workers, destroying the very livelihood of Wisconsin families for his own political ends that he believes "eventually" will become the consensus, as he tells George Will [who can't help but take gratuitous shots at the civil rights and peace movement in Madison].

In the mean time, families will just have to do without their jobs, as Walker and GOP legislative aides from Sen. Randy Hopper's office (R-Fond du Lac) smirk at callers.

This 'budget repair" bill is so loaded with weapons against Wisconsin families; it's difficult to address all the harm. Women, seniors, minorities, workers, anyone who is not a demonstrated Republican or Tea Partier is in some peril.

Here's one huge problem: Walker's threat to begin lay-offs next week if he does not get his way is a direct attack on families

Never has a Wisconsin governor so explicitly demonstrated genuine malice towards the people whom he is supposed to serve.

The sense of entitlement that Walker displays: Now that he is governor he can act in any manner he chooses reveals the mind-set that Norman Cousins described as the "pathology of power."

Walker is King George W. cubed at the height of his delusions from which we are still recovering.

It's crisis time alright; we have a maddened tyrant wreaking havoc onto our families.

People have fought and literally died for the rights such as collective bargaining that we take for granted today, or at least we did until Scott Walker assumed office.

As the great labor historians, Sidney Lens and Howard Zinn, remind us in their work, labor rights were won with blood, cracked skulls and destroyed families.

A recall will happen next year for Walker; and now is the time for militant action and civil disobedience.

This fool, and that is what Scott Walker is, has no conception of what he is doing.

Local Officials Fight Back as Nation Joins the Battle

Update: Scott Walker admits objective on collective bargaining: Weakening unions

- Live Coverage from Madison and AFLCIO Coverage and Not My Wisconsin -

"Madison Mayor Dave Cieslewicz and more than 160 local officials from La Crosse to Milwaukee on Tuesday sent a letter to the governor and Legislature arguing that severe restrictions on collective bargaining undercut local control and the ability to deliver cost-effective, quality services," reports Dean Mosiman.

Democratic state senators say they are not giving up on Wisconsin families. They demand Walker halts the anti-collective bargaining vote until Gov. Walker says he'll negotiate.

Supporters are still coming to Madison from across the United States to what Rev. Jesse Jackson calls the "epicenter of the battle for America's democracy, and it is as American as Lexington, Concord, Gettysburg, Montgomery and Selma."

As Walker stays on target on Wisconsin families, it's worth noting that Finance, Insurance and Real Estate is the number one sector which contributed to Walker's campaign, according to the site, Follow the Money.

Jack E. Lohman has a new piece out. Writes Lohman:

Like, how about giving the governor the authority to sell off state assets (power plants), without bids, at any price they choose, even for pennies on the dollar, to private interests, even to those that fund Walker’s campaign???

As in Senate Bill 11: ...

So a no-bid contract to sell off the state power plants to the (4th highest Walker contributor) oil-tycoon Koch Brothers (see also here) will very likely occur, and consumer energy rates and corporate product prices will increase.

There is no other reasonable scenario. The taxpayers have no say in it, and the unions don’t yet realize that this isn’t an issue about worker rights.

Remember when Walker also wanted to sell off the Milwaukee airport when he was county executive.

Feb 22, 2011

Fireside Crap

Madison, Wisconsin—Gov. Scott Walker's chat with Wisconsin last night has all the sincerity of the AIG derivatives executive's 2008 assurance to investors that their money is safely and productively at work months before the economic catastrophe hit.

But Walker goes in for reverse-Enron accounting, claiming a deficit crisis when no such crisis exists.

Unfortunately for Walker, that pesky non-partisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau (LFB) has debunked the budget crisis notion, as State Rep, Mark Pocan (D-Madison) points out, a fact Walker refuses to address.

Worse, Walker claims he will be forced to lay off workers if he doesn't get his way on the budget; saying he doesn't want to lay people off, even as he refuses to negotciate.

Here is a partial list of highlights and significant omissions from Walker's chat:

  • No mention of the corporate give-aways and their clear relevancy to the budget, or his promises to the super-wealthy
  • Claimed appreciation for working families whose members he is threatening to lay off
  • Using the passive voice to absolve himself of responsibility for laying off workers and devastating families; it's an old politician's trick in the tradition of 'mistakes were made,' Walker said, "If there is no agreement by July 1st, another 5-6 thousand state workers -- as well as 5-6 thousand local government employees would be also laid off," in addition to those workers Walker promises to axe next week if Walker does not get his way on ending collective bargaining, animated by what Walker assures us "isn't a battle with unions," or he would" have gone after the private-sector unions," the Wagner Act notwithstanding in Walker's most bizarre statement of the evening
  • Continued lying about the "budget deficit" as though Walker has no choice but to accept the 6.2 percent increase in state agencies that the LFB says would lead to a short-fall in the vanishingly unlikely event that the legislature adopts the estimate as a budget
  • No mention of the fact that all of Wisconsin's school districts, counties, and municipalities have never asked of Walker to implement his scheme to forbid collective bargaining, and in fact are requesting that he not end collective bargaining (Mosiman). Walker's proposed end to collective bargaining "goes far beyond what we asked for. We were not expecting to abolish the collective bargaining process altogether," said Dan Thompson, executive director of the League of Wisconsin Municipalities. [See also Tarr.]
  • Implying that "millions of taxpayers from across the state" do not include those working families who disagree with Walker
  • Deriding workers demonstrating solidarity as an ominous occurrence as "more and more protesters come in from Nevada, Chicago and elsewhere" overwhelming the voices of the millions of taxpayers from across the state, save public workers who do not pay taxes apparently in Walker world
  • Calling for pension contributions increases without mentioning the unions' offer to do just that as Wisconsin's pension fund remains among the nation's healthiest (Carter)
  • Refusing to mention that public unions have made good-faith offers on pensions, health care, salaries; and that Walker refuses to negotiate
Many more lies are found in the brief address.

The rest is typical divide-and-conquer rhetoric, pitting the unemployed against the employed, the pubic versus the private sector, and demonizing Democratic state senators who are fighting for collective bargain for Wisconsin families.

"Do the job you were elected to do," Walker said. "You don't have to like the outcome, or even vote yes, but as part of the world's greatest democracy, you should be here, in Madison, at the Capitol."

Yes, but aren't Democratic state senators protecting Wisconsin families? Walker refuses to engage the question.

This is not a governor. This is a ruler who is willing to terrorize Wisconsin working families for his petty pursuit of power and narrow ideology. And Walker thinks he is untouchable.

To conclude on a positive note when Walker looks at the camera and lies, he presents a visage more appealing than Richard Nixon's, though a viewer is left with the impression of a well-concealed smirk of someone who just got away with cheating on an exam.

This will change. Walker is desperate as polls show most Americans and an increasing number of GOP governors reject the idea of demonizing public workers and outlawing collective bargaining.

As Alex Pareene writes in Salon of Walker's chat, "It was not a particularly inspiring or convincing performance, and I imagine a lot of Wisconsinites are still suffering from buyer's remorse tonight."

No doubt, but Walker has revitalized the progressive movement in Wisconsin to a degree that this writer has never seen. The world is watching and outside of Appalachia and the Old South, the world stands with Wisconsin workers.

Walker: No Collective Bargaining or Lose Your Job

Update II: Live Coverage from Madison-

Update: See Robert Reich: "America is the richest nation in the world, and “we’ve” never been richer. There’s no reason for us to turn on our teachers, our unionized workers, our poor and needy, and our elderly." And ThinkProgress' The Truth Behind The Anti-Union Assault; and Paul Krugman:

Walker isn’t interested in making a deal. Partly that’s because he doesn’t want to share the sacrifice: even as he proclaims that Wisconsin faces a terrible fiscal crisis, he has been pushing through tax cuts that make the deficit worse. Mainly, however, he has made it clear that rather than bargaining with workers, he wants to end workers’ ability to bargain.
Gov. Walker is threatening 1,000s of Wisconsin families. Lose your rights or lose your job.

This is not governing; this is terrorism of Wisconsin families.

See Walker warns state workers layoff notices could come next week if bill isn't passed (Bauer)

Feb 19, 2011

Walker Exposed; Rejects Concessions, Demands No Collective Bargaining

Update: As the Tea Partiers rush to defend a desperate Gov. Scott Walker today, Forbes reports, Koch Brothers Behind Wisconsin Effort to Kill Public Unions.

In other news, Rush Limbaugh went a rant last night calling Wisconsin families "freeloaders."

Walker's Bluff Called

Wisconsin public unions have said all along they will compromise, negotiate and make concessions as they have for decades.

Wisconsin citizens have accused Gov. Walker as lying about his true motives in the so-called "budget repair" bill that contains language to bust unions and political opponents by outlawing collective bargaining for public unions.

Now, the unions have again called Walker's bluff.

"Mary Bell, president of the Wisconsin Education Association Council, and Marty Beil, executive director of AFSCME Council 24, said in a conference call with reporters [last night] that workers will do their fair share to narrow Wisconsin's budget gap." [Hall, Spicuzza, Barbour; WSJ)

All Bell demands is that Wisconsin working families be allowed to continue the right to collectively bargain and organize as before.

Walker refused the offer in a rambling response that personally I still cannot decipher.

The plain truth is Walker and the GOP want to destroy unions, they want to obstruct Democratically leaning voters ("Voter ID"), especially College students; gerrymander all voting districts (Rep. Tammy Baldwin (D-Madison) is high on their list); and a host of other anti-democratic measures.

It's been written here before: What Walker and the GOP fail to understand is that Wisconsin citizens do not owe the Republican Party political allegiance or face pay-back through the budget and other legislative measures. We can vote for and work for whomever we damn please. It's called: Democracy

Walker will continue his too-slick-by-half defence of the fiscal crisis. But his expressed concern for the budget is a sham. Rep. Mark Pocan (D-Madison) has the story.
Funny, but I do not recall Gov. Walker mentioning the Koch Bros. Why the silence, Gov. Walker?