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ghostrider On February - 19 - 2011

Wisconsin. What the hell is going on in Wisconsin?

For the first time in many years I think we are actually seeing what this country is based on.

We are actually seeing our representatives standing up and saying NO!

The people have come out and come to the state capitol and said NO!

Unions, no matter how you feel about them, are necessary. They protect all workers, Union and non-Union. I know that with out Unions we would still be working 80 hours a week and working weekends. Holidays and vacations would be a pipe dream. Sick and can’t make it to work? Too bad, your fired. Your teenage children, would be working because it would be the only way you could afford to feed them. But the Wisconsin Governor apparently wants to go back to those times, along with the Tea Party members and the rest of the Republican party. The Unions that the Governor is supposedly battling have already said they will buy into the increased pay ins to the health care benefits and the increased pay ins to the pension funds. What they are protesting  is their right for bargaining power with the government. Take away those bargaining powers and the government can do what ever they want to them and they will have no recourse to fight it. This is the goal of the Tea Party and the corporatist Republicans. Reduce working people to wage slaves.

Don’t get me wrong, I am not a Union lover, I just understand the necessity. I worked for an abrasive brush manufacturing company and was a member of the steel workers union when I was 25. I started out sweeping floors, it was mindless and I was just glad to have a job. Within a week they sat me down in front of a brush assembly machine, after a few minutes I figured out the rythm of the machine. Not too long after that there was a guy behind me with a stop watch.  Keep in mind this was a manufacturer that was a union shop. This means they paid piece work. If you produced more than what they considered the standard you received a bonus. I received a bonus after my first night.

They then moved me to their shipping department. I loved it. It was a great job. I was at the end of a conveyor belt where orders came down the belt and I had to box them up and get them ready for UPS to pick the boxed orders up. It was one of the easiest jobs I ever had. Unfortunately after about 4 months in this job they started having lay offs. This was during the so wonderful Reagan years. Anyone that lived through those years and wasn’t some kind of millionaire doesn’t need me to explain what really happened during those years. Reagan was supposed to be some kind of miracle worker, not so much.

Of course it goes without saying that I was laid off since I was the new guy in the department. Didn’t matter that I was one of the hardest workers, it was as ta la vista baby for me. While I can understand the theory behind that kind of decision, I have a hard time with the reality of that choice. I don’t blame the company, I don’t even blame the union, I blame the employee who took advantage of the union protection and got to keep his job while I lost mine. Some may find that cold. Some may find that selfish. But I really don’t regret the way I feel about how I lost my job at what was a pretty good company. Besides, after all the dues I paid into the steel workers union they did nothing for me. I went to the local union office to see what they had to offer. They had nothing. It was the first and last time I ever collected unemployment. I was out of work for a month before I found a job driving forklift. Of course it was a non-union shop. At that time I was not impressed with union shops and was actually disillusioned by them.

Prior to this I worked in a bottling plant shagging loads of soda. This meant going around slinging cases of quart bottles of soda. Before that I worked on a farm. While a very satisfying job it was very physical. Carrying 80lb bags of corn a 100 yards or more out of a corn field. Picking up hay all summer long. Delivering wood in the winter. For me the farm job was a year round experience. These were all non-union jobs and I never got laid off from any of them. So you can understand why I had a problem with unions.

But as I got older and started to work in office jobs, I came to understand the good that unions had accomplished. I and my wife had the opportunity to move to another state in 1985 for a decent increase in pay. I went from being a blue collar worker to being a white collar worker. I went back to school and was lucky enough to work for a company that paid full reimbursement for the courses and books. That was phenomenal. And showed some of the true benefits of what unions did for workers. I never would have been able to go to college without that kind of benefit. Unfortunately, I know there are not many companies who provide that kind of benefit anymore. To me that is a sign of the union busting and the Republican control.

So to Wisconsin, I say keep it up. If I could get there I would join you. To Ohio and Illinois, don’t let the government scare you, follow in Wisconsin’s foot steps. To the Democratic Legislation in Wisconsin, don’t return until this bill is recalled. The state police can’t touch you as long as you are in Illinois. Not to mention can you believe the Governor sent the state police after you? Maybe you need to look into that when you finally return to the state. That has to be an abuse of power since you haven’t done anything wrong. At least the last time I checked non-violent disagreement and protests were not against the law. You are obviously on the side of the people. Though only 25,000 have come to the capital to protest I have yet to see any counter protests. To me this means that the Governor and his Republican controlled legislation are trying to push through a bill that the people don’t want. That right there says it all. Dear MR Governor, you serve at the behest of the people, do what the people want.  This is a perfect example of the people standing up to the government and their supposed majority and saying loud and clear, NO you are wrong and we will not stand for it no matter how many people you think you have on your side.

Beware America, Wisconsin, Ohio & Illinois have given us a glimpse of what we are really in for over the next 2 years. More Labor busting. More Labor abuse. More government telling you what you can and can’t do despite their chant of smaller government. They want your money, they want your life and they want your property.  I see the robber barons of the late 1800’s occurring all over again. And no I am not paranoid. I will probably not do to bad in the last years of my working life and retirement. Fortunately for me I started a 401k when I was very young and it has accrued a decent amount of money. But it doesn’t mean I’m not worried about what I see happening in this country over the past 10 years. It is a little scary.

I know I may have put too much personal experiences into this and not enough facts, but I hope the point I was trying to get across came out. I believe some unions have got out of control, but without unions corparate America would be our government and we would all be wage slaves. That is completely against everything this country was built on. It is completely against everything our founding fathers believed in. Can amybody say East India Trade Company? So to all you Tea Party people, please learn what our country is really about. Please learn what the Constitution really says.

450 Responses so far.

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  1. HypnoToad says:

    Wow, I am not even sure where to leave this comment.
    Until I figure out where is the best place, I will “deposit” it here.Please forgive my faux pax.

    It seems as if the Street Walker for the Koch bros., Governor S. Walker (R-WI), is more than willing to appease his pimps at the slightest of provocations.

    He has made it more than clear today that his personality wants to be part of historic events. Today he has become the nexus of very historic events in our fair nation. He revealed the cards in his hand and from what I can tell will be the impetuous for the awakening of America.

    It just might be the beginning of when people, who once thought they no longer had time for what the politicians did or even felt their voice was even being heard, realized that their attention to current events might have any real affect.

    Illustrative artists please step-up to the corner in the red light district that is Madison, WI. Koch Bros as the stereotypical pimp (hey they used it for Acorn), Scott in in a mini and fishnets., etc.

    (Oh only about six edits on my part, pardon the very quick revisions)

    • ADONAI says:

      This is indeed the right place for ‘Sconsin based commentary Hypno.

      Check the sidebar on the upper right of your screen to see where everyone is commenting. You can click right on their comment to go straight to it.

  2. PlatoSunTsu says:

    An interesting idea I saw posted elsewhere, that I’d like to elaborate on:

    Couldn’t corporations be considered:
    Unions of Capitalist-Owners united to protect the rights of its management and shareholders and same from liabilitie­s and/or prosecution(that union members don’t have).

    Also, the Citizens United ( to divide) decision to give these same corporate “unions” more powers of undue influence.

    • ghostrider says:

      Well said.

      Yes, they probably could be seen that way.

      All that does is further explain why they want to bust the working person Union. In their mind this is a war. Union against Union. We just need to make sure their Union doesn’t win.

  3. KQuark says:

    Well it’s come full circle. Progressives are now using right wing talking points and tactics to advocate doing away with collective bargaining agreements.

    First, Krugman conflates public and private unionism. Where public sector unions are concerned, the “boss” isn’t some private oligarch, it’s the government — ultimately the public. Unlike private unions, they get to pick the people on the other side of the bargaining table by funneling union dues into their political campaigns. Even if union leaders and lawmakers were saints, such an arrangement inevitably would put the public interest and the interests of government workers in tension. That is why no less a liberal paladin than Franklin D. Roosevelt opposed public sector unions, saying “The process of collective bargaining, as usually understood, cannot be transplanted in the public service.”

    Second, progressives should acknowledge that many states have gone overboard in negotiating generous compensation packages for public employees. For example, the states are carrying about $1 trillion in unfunded pension liabilities on their books. Many pay a higher percentage of their workers’ health care premiums than private employers typically do. It rankles private sector workers to see states go into debt to provide public employees with pay and benefits (not to mention job stability) that are beyond their reach.

    Third, progressives need to improve the quality of public services even as they reduce the cost of government. Collective bargaining agreements often impede the quest for flexibility, innovation, and higher productivity in the public sector. A classic example is teacher tenure, which makes it difficult for public school systems to get rid of ineffective teachers or to pay good ones on the basis of superior performance.

    First. The government is not sacrosanct it’s an employer just like the unions and they are an organization that sides with big business more than with workers.

    Second. The author conveniently leaves out wages. Across the board wages are lower for public employees than private and that’s why public employees bargain for different ways to be compensated.

    Third. This is right out of the right wing playbook. Use one aspect of public workers, tenure which affects just a small fraction of all state employees as the rule. Then use vague terms and phrases like innovation and competitiveness to hide the real problem.

    Oh and that real problem is not employees right to collectively bargain. It’s the constant pressure to lower revenue.


    • SueInCa says:

      For real? I am going to go and read it, but when you elect Republicans and Baggers, this is what you get. I have been reading up on baggers in Ohio and they still are pushing the 2% tax cuts. I know they are not all rich so there has to be something in it for them. They are called Ohio Liberty Council?

    • Chernynkaya says:

      Illegal! And some big union better notify the DOJ!

      “Former Wisconsin Assistant Attorney General Charles Hoornstra said that, if Walker is blocking the website, it could be a violation of state and federal laws concerning free speech laws. The accusation by the Wisconsin Democratic Party accompanies an accusation by the Teaching Assistants Association that Wisconsin state authorities cut off wifi access to a room they had taken over as a headquarters inside of the Capitol.”

    • jdmn17 says:


      Looks like things are coming apart at the seams eh?

  4. ADONAI says:

    Looks like Indiana is joining Wisconsin on strike


  5. PocketWatch says:

    Welcome to Libya, Wisconsin!

    Madison, Wisconsin (CNN) — A left-leaning website that union supporters used to rally protesters in Wisconsin was partially blocked as demonstrators gathered in the state Capitol over a controversial budget bill.

    The website, defendwisconsin.org, could not be accessed on Monday and into Tuesday morning in the Capitol building, where crowds assembled over proposed legislation that would increase the costs of benefits to public employees and curb their collective-bargaining rights.

    Wisconsin Democratic Party press secretary Graeme Zielinski blamed Gov. Scott Walker and Republican lawmakers — who returned to work Tuesday — for causing the outage.

    “In a direct assault on the First Amendment, Scott Walker’s administration is blocking access in the Wisconsin Capitol to opposition websites,” Zielinski said.

    The governor’s spokesman, Cullen Werwie, responded Tuesday, calling the accusation “a lie.”

    The report goes on to say that the site was “being evaluated” before being allowed to go back live online.

  6. Chernynkaya says:

    So what is Obama doing about Wisconsin, you ask? (Confession--at frst I asked the same question.)

    “Some of what I’ve heard coming out of Wisconsin, where you’re just making it harder for public employees to collectively bargain generally seems like more of an assault on unions,” President Obama said Wednesday to WTMJ TV “And I think it’s very important for us to understand that public employees, they’re our neighbors, they’re our friends.”

    “Obama, mindful of who provides foot soldiers for Democratic campaigns, oversimplifies the issue by calling Walker’s budget an attack on unions.
    Worse, the president is interfering with the outcome of an election. By using his political machine to flood Madison with demonstrators, he encourages Democratic state senators in the minority to flee the capital to deny the upper chamber a quorum and shut down the legislative branch of government.


    Organizing for America (Obama’s organization):

    “Live from Madison, Wisconsin
    Thursday marked the third straight day of rallies in Madison, Wisconsin—where students, nurses, public safety officers, and others are gathering to stand up for the rights of Wisconsin state employees.
    Republican Governor Walker Scott Walker has proposed a radical plan to take away the collective bargaining rights of public workers. Those who teach and those who plow the snow-filled Wisconsin streets would no longer be able to organize for better working conditions and rights in the workplace.
    Since Tuesday, the streets of Madison and the halls of the Capitol building have been filled with thousands of ordinary folks who are sending the strongest message possible to their state legislators—their rights are not up for negotiation.
    Organizing for America–Wisconsin, who has been among the most vocal advocates for state employees’ rights, is tweeting live from the rallies and pulling together the voices, videos, and photos of this movement.

    “Obama, a few days ago, threw his political machine onto the side of teachers who are helping to lead a protest movement in Wisconsin over Gov. Scott Walker’s plan to cut benefits and take away collective bargaining rights from labor. Madison public schools have been closed for several days because teachers called in sick, and the state Capitol building has been filled with protesters.


    Obama on Wisconsin: “Seems like more of an assault on unions”


    So, yes, the President has weighed in decisively on the side of the protesers. But the only MSM reports you will find is criticism that he is interfering. Fuck ’em.

    • KQuark says:

      Like usual the right is using the Rovian strategy of attacking their weakness to take down the oppositions strength. I’ve heard trolls now calling OFA an “astroturf” organization. Of course they are just trying to equate truthful claims that the source of teabagger funds are astroturf to the grassroots funded OFA. Because when you bring every argument into the mud the loudest and most unreasonable people win.

  7. KQuark says:

    The thing that pisses me off most is that many Dems and the left enabled Republicans the last election. We let the GOP make the most progressive body in politics the most regressive body with all the bullshit memes that both parties are the same. That is just what the GOP wants us to fucking believe. Now do both sides act the same?

    • Chernynkaya says:

      Yeah--the “same.” I am sick to death of that BS. Here’s the Obama budget. The same, huh? Gimme a break!!

      A Budget that Meets Two Goals

      Yet we cannot abandon the needs of working families at this point in our economic recovery. Yes, our cuts have involved tough choices, and they will require sacrifices from many Americans. But there’s also a lot in this budget to help middle-class families get back to work, afford college, to protect them at work, and strengthen their retirement.

      A few examples:

      • Cutting Taxes for the Middle Class: Late last year, the President and Congress reached a bipartisan deal to cut taxes on middle-class families, which is reflected in the President’s budget. The deal included income tax cuts and a temporary payroll tax holiday that, taken together, will mean that typical families will see thousands of dollars more in their paychecks this year.

      • Helping Keep Child Care Affordable: The Budget proposes to expand the Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit, which helps families cover the rising cost of child care. Our proposal will nearly double this tax credit for families making less than $75,000 a year, and nearly all eligible families making less than $103,000 a year will see their credit increase.

      • Helping Students and Their Families Pay for College: The Budget proposes to build on the gains we’ve made over the last two years in boosting college affordability, including permanently extending the President’s new American Opportunity Tax Credit, which provides students and their families with a tax credit of up to $2,500 a year to help pay for college. The Budget also makes the tough choices necessary to maintain the $5,550 maximum Pell Grant award.

      • Strengthening Retirement Security for American Workers: The Budget proposes to give more workers access to better retirement savings options by requiring employers who don’t already offer a retirement plan at the workplace to automatically enroll their workers in a direct-deposit IRA. Workers will be able to opt out of these automatic IRAs if they choose, and the smallest employers will be exempt, but this proposal will help provide an easier and better way to save for the 78 million Americans who don’t currently have a retirement plan at work.

      • Providing Support for Family Caregivers: The Budget proposes to devote $96 million to the Administration’s Caregiver Initiative, an effort to expand assistance for families and seniors so that caregivers can better manage their multiple responsibilities and seniors can live in the community for as long as possible.

      • Investing in Infrastructure and Clean Energy to Create Jobs Here in America: The Budget proposes several major investments in infrastructure and clean energy that will increase American competitiveness and create jobs. These proposals include making major investments in roads, rail, and high-speed internet, extending a highly effective clean energy manufacturing tax credit, and improving incentives for purchasing electric cars.

      Oh, and BTW-- Where are the effin’ VOTES?


    • KQuark says:

      Truly sorry about my rant. I’m just so mad the false memes from so many on the left worked right into the GOPs hands. I still see people hold onto those memes like a comfortable blanket that makes them think they are immune from taking responsibility for any of this current madness.

      • audadvnc says:

        Look in the mirror. You’re just as befuddled as the Tea Baggers.

        • Khirad says:

          I don’t even know what that’s supposed to mean.

        • Chernynkaya says:

          What is befuddled? As far as I am concerned, anyone who says there is “no difference” IS a Bagger because it repeats the lie that government is the problem. Straight out of Frank Luntz’s playbook.

          • KQuark says:

            Cher the new nihilism from the purists is let it all fall down and break in pieces.

            I can’t help but laugh they really think if it does implode that we will build up into a progressive Utopia. When it’s far more likely that if we do crash entirely we will end up with a right wing oligarchy.

            The only answer is voting for the best choice in EVERY election. These apocalyptic models of progress are just ridiculous.

          • ghsts says:

            People hate politicians as much as lawyers, period. No one can sell their way out of that, understand that and we have a chance for progress. The whole game is marketing, and because we know this, we fall prey to hearing what we want to hear. I know the Dems are marginally better but believe things are going to have to get worse before people wake up and demand better, apparently so does the DNC.

            When we read what the justice dept did during wikigate, Clinton did with state dept, “ex”CIA private contractors in pakistan, drone strikes, no exit date on Afghanistan, business as usual on wall st, business pandering, nojob recovery, etc. So the rhetoric is different that is good, where are they on WI shhhhhhhhh don’t rile the middleclass. Look at KO and Maddow, two people that speak for me, truth but no lack of finger pointing.

            • KQuark says:

              No thanks things are bad enough.

            • Chernynkaya says:

              Yeah, well until we can move this country to the left-of-center, this is what we get. Feingold lost, Grayson lost--all the progressives in red/purple states lost. Explain that. Look at the last election--do you believe that they wanted MORE progressives? Hell no. I wish! This country is stuck on stupid. There is no proof whatsoever that if only we’d been more progressive the voters would have elected Dems.

              Until we get the message out--and good luck with that, with practically the entire media in the pockets of the Right--we will continue to lose. But there is hope in solidarity--the ONLY hope. (See the articles I posted on The Daily Planet.)

          • KQuark says:

            KO made a plea to purists during the election but not enough listened. This horde of incoming Tea Baggers are not even the same as your old style Republicans. They are radicals of the right. But Dems were so drunk from the water of “disappointment” that things were not changing fast enough that they prevented any future progress and worse the GOP are trying to engage full reverse again. So from now on out they rationalize blaming Dems for all our problems and enable the GOP.

            • KQuark says:

              Gitmo is my favorite topic to show how the purists just don’t understand the limits of reality. Obama closed Gitmo with an XO but the executive branch can’t fund what he ordered. So when congress does not pass funding the purists still blame Obama. Hell Obama even took the extraordinary measure to write a signing statement that the executive branch could bring in Gitmo detainees to the US for trial. Then in the ultimate hypocrisy purists blame Obama for breaking the Constitution for exercising what’s in the purview of the executive branch.

            • Chernynkaya says:

              Exactly, KQ. I am through with the purists. I could list dozens of examples of the very real and substantive differences between the Parties--to no avail. They reply with things like Gitmo!” Well, fine. (And BTW-- i can argue about what Obama has tried to do re: Gitmo.)

              There are plenty of things I wish were different--and things I’ll keep pressing for. But I’ll tell you what--try pressing for any of those things with a Bagger Congress! Truly--I am through with them.

        • KQuark says:

          Can you ever have an argument without throwing out hyperbole and thinly guised name calling?

          Then you wonder why I don’t want to debate with you.

    • audadvnc says:

      That’s ridiculous. The dems brought it all upon themselves, by pretending to support the American citizenry, all the while taking money from and doing the bidding of the East Coast Establishment / Wall Street / Globalist Powers That Be.

      Had the Democratic party held to its mission instead of selling out to Big Money, this issue would be moot.

  8. DawgBone says:

    The American people seem to be too comatose/stupid/apathetic to see beyond Republican wedge issues.

    How can they POSSIBLY not realize that they are being totally manipulated by people who couldn’t care less for their well being.

    Busting unions, and indirectly busting the Democratic Party, will further destroy the middle class in this country.

    Third World America --> the elite and the working poor. Coming to a neighborhood near you.

    • audadvnc says:

      If the Dems want to regain any credibility in the eyes of America, they’re going to have to step up to the plate and do it. Right now, they’re merely tools of the One Percenters, just like the GOP are. The Two Party political system is Janus, the two faced demon.

      • DawgBone says:

        Exactly. I don’t have much faith in the current crop of Dems, but maybe they will surprise us.

        It may even be too late to try to get a viable 3rd party off the ground.

    • PocketWatch says:

      Back before there was Social Security, welfare, Medicare, Medicaid, and all manner of those dreaded social programs that are now being actively attacked and gutted, we had the following:

      Families were responsible for others’ debts. If mom or dad were broke, legally, the creditors could come after the kids or brothers and sisters, anyone. I see that coming back.

      There were poor farms, where old people that couldn’t pay thier debts were sentenced to to “work off their debt.” It was backbreaking, humiliating work, little better than prison. Coming soon to an area near you when corporations can buy your debt and make you pay off in any way they choose…

      There were company towns, where everything was owned by the company, including the “law” and the “courts” and you were paid in company “scrip” that was only good at the company store, where prices were such that you could never get ahead. Your rental home was company owned.

      In a very real sense, you became an indentured servant. We are again close to that now in places.

      These and many other things we all thought we thought were behind us are returning, much to the delight of neo-cons, conservatives, and TBaggers who think they -- for some unfathomable reason -- will be exempt.

      They are WRONG!

      And it’s all cloaked in the name of “liberty” and “freedom” and “personal responsibility.”

      Our once great and prosperous country is being reduced to financial rubble by madmen and fools.

      • Chernynkaya says:

        The Social Security Act was passed by Congress as part of the New Deal and signed by Roosevelt on August 14, 1935. Most women and minorities were excluded from the benefits. Jobs that were not covered by the act included workers in agricultur­al, domestic service, government employees, and many teachers, nurses, hospital employees, librarians­, and social workers. The act also denied coverage to individual­s who worked intermitte­ntly.

        __1950 inclusion of domestic labor, household employees working at least two days a week for the same person were added in, along with nonprofit workers and the self-emplo­yed.

        __1954 Hotel workers, laundry workers, all agricultur­al workers, and state and local government employees were added in.

        __ 1956 Disability benefits were added

        __1961 Retirement at age 62 was extended to men.

        __1962 Benefits of covered women could be collected by dependent husbands, widowers, and children.

        —1965 MEDICARE was added.

        __1972 The bill also set up a cost of living adjustment (COLA) to take effect in 1975. Amendments also establishe­d the Supplement­al Security Income (SSI). Immigrants who had never paid into the system became eligible for SSI benefits when they reached age 65. SSI is not a Social Security benefit, but a welfare program, because the elderly and disabled poor are entitled to SSI regardless of work history.

        __1977-199­0’s Amendments regarding the indexing of payments and dealing with the Trust Fund were enacted.

        If that bill were new today, the purists on the Left would have bellowed that it didn’t go far enough--kill it!

        • Artist50 says:

          I’m old enough to remember the county home which is where old people went when they didn’t have family and they were indigent. My grandmothers, born before the turn of the century (as Ayn Rand born in 1905 I think) were the biggest benefitters of SS and Medicare because they paid very little -- if any in -- and were the first generation to enjoy the benefits. Sorry, but I can’t help to note that Rand drew both though she was against them her whole life and would not have contributed very much because of her age.

        • Buddy McCue says:

          And they probably would have said, “Roosevelt, Hoover, what’s the difference? Maybe I’ll just stay home during the next election; THAT’LL show him!”

      • Buddy McCue says:

        Excellent! Thanks for pointing this out.

        I wish more people realized what things used to be like before real reforms were put in place.

        No one deserves to owe his soul to the company store.

      • KQuark says:

        DB and PW that’s exactly what Republicans want to go back to for sure. People often mischaracterize how far Republicans want to take us back. It’s not to the 1950’s like Reagan anymore they want to take us back to the 1850’s before any real progress in this country was made.

        The saddest part is the motives. Republicans just want to put all aspects of life back in the hands of white men like they aren’t already in the hands of white men enough now. And this is coming from a white man.

      • Abbyrose86 says:

        Exactly PW….people don’t realize that all things that were fought for…could come back if we don’t fight to continue them and to improve them!

      • DawgBone says:

        You nailed it, PW.

        Our republic is teetering on the brink of really dark days.

  9. boomer1949 says:


    I posted something in OT that should probably go here, however I didn’t to take up space from other comments. Please check it out!


    boomer1949 says:
    02/22/2011 at 5:49 AM
    Good morning everyone! Well, I’m all wound up this morning, after listening to Steve Inskeep’s piece on what’s happening in Wisconsin. I’m so wound up I sent Morning Edition the following.

    Although the focus (which is why there was a rush to pass this thing) in Wisconsin has been on public workers, unions, and collective bargaining, there is much more in Walker’s bill than meets the eye. Buried deep inside, which everyone seems to be ignoring is Walker’s ties to the Kochs. If NPR is going to report on this, then it’s about time you investigate and present ALL of the facts, all of the story: the real elephant in the room. Seriously.

    Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker: Funded by the Koch Bros.

    The Koch Brothers’ End Game in Wisconsin

    The other part of the Scott Walker plan: Firesale of Wisconsin state assets

    Thank you.

    boomer1949 says:
    02/22/2011 at 5:49 AM

    I encourage everyone to either read or listen (sorry Inskeep’s interviews must have followed one of these reports, I just don’t know which one):




    And, not one mention about what’s buried in the bill and questioning Walker’s eagerness to rush it through the legislature. After you read/listen, contacting NPR and Morning Edition might not be such a bad idea either. Contact the Show

    I’m so mad I can’t type straight!!!!

  10. Fi says:

    I’ve been reading a lot of internet sites, newspaper etc over these last few days, and it appears to me, that the only people who seem to have things right is Ezra Klein and Rachel Maddow, this is nothing to do with Unions at all, this is the systematic destruction of the Democratic party, nothing more, nothing less, neutralising their base, cutting of funding etc, I do truly fear for the future of the US.
    There are people all over the Middle East, giving up their lives to achieve the very freedoms, that the US are about to lose.
    I’m very sad, I wish I was more hopeful, this is the kind of Dem destruction that Karl Rove could only dream of.

  11. Redemption Song II says:

    FYI: The Tea Party (Koch?) are now organizing against unions in Michigan (I’m sorry I can’t comment more…I have to work, but I thought this would be of interest):

    As you may have heard in the last week Wisconsin Unions have bussed thousands to the capitol, shutting down small companies and schools for days while they rally to keep expensive union plans that are killing that state.


    Organizing for America (Obama’s Organizing wing) and Unions are calling for a march on Lansing tomorrow.

    WE MUST HAVE A LARGER COUNTER RALLY! Please read just two of the many messages I have received in the past 2 days:

    Southwest Michigan Patriots
    Tea Party Rally
    Lansing, Tuesday Feb. 22nd
    From 9:00 a.m. until 11:00 a.m.
    State Capitol, West Side along Walnut St.

    Dear Sean,
    Most of probably are aware of what is happening in Madison, Wisconsin. Governor Scott Walker is standing firm with the legislature to address the budget crisis.

    Governor Walker is facing a $3.6 billion budget deficit, and he wants state workers to pay one-half of their pension costs and 12.6 percent of their health benefits. Currently, most state employees pay nothing for their pensions and virtually nothing for their health insurance.

    Exempting police, fire, and state troopers, Governor Walker would end collective bargaining over pensions and benefits for the rest. Collective bargaining for wages would still be permitted, but there would be no wage hikes above the Consumer Price Index. Unions could still represent workers, but they could not force employees to pay dues. In exchange for this, Walker promises no furloughs for layoffs.

    Government employee unions have been staging strikes, teachers have been calling in sick, schools are closed, and school children are being driven to the capitol by their teachers. Over 70,000 showed up on Saturday to rally for both sides. The rallies are spreading across America.

    Below, is a notice from the Southwest Michigan Tea Party Patriots inviting you to come to Lansing to rally in support of the taxpayers who want fiscal accountability. I am passing it along as it was written by Gene Clem, President of the SWMIPATS. Hope you can come.

    We will gather along Walnut on the West side of the Capitol. There seems to be plenty of parking within 2 to 3 blocks to the West of that area.

    Please check out this web site: Worker Solidarity (reminiscent of USSR isnt it?)

    As you can see they are calling for rallies across the nation this week. Folks, this is the start of the 2012 campaign. In contrast to Tea Party rallies in support of the rule of law and the constitution and election of folks who would vote as we desired, these rallies are against the duly elected representatives of the folks who turned the nation red in November. I’ll let you make up your own minds as to who may be behind that site…. “workers of the world?”….

    We cannot let our elected government officials be intimidated by these ill informed people who will show up for these rallies. We must let them see that ‘the folks’ are here to support them in the difficult decisions we sent them to Lansing, or Madison, or Springfield, or where ever to make.

    As always, bring signs that are to the point; humor is usually the best way to make a point. No personalities, no politics, we are about citizen control of our government. Elections mean things. “No more $140,000 per year bus drivers” or “I can’t afford my health insurance AND yours” or “Tea for two means you pay too”. Come on, you can do better than that I am sure.

    For those of you who live several hours from Lansing it means it will be an early morning road trip, but we need to show our support for spending cuts against those whose interest is in continued growth of government. Dress warm, Lansing is a cold, cold place.

    February 22nd is George Washington’s birthday; What Would George Do? Make him proud of us.

    Gene Clem

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