"In Wisconsin, the new Republican governor, Scott Walker, wants to strip state employees of their collective-bargaining rights because: “We’re broke. We’ve been broke in this state for years.”
"Wisconsin’s Democratic state senators went into hiding to deprive the Republican majority of the quorum they need to pass Walker’s agenda. The Senate majority leader, Scott Fitzgerald — who happens to be the brother of the Assembly speaker, Jeff Fitzgerald — believes the governor is absolutely right about the need for draconian measures to cut spending in this crisis. So he’s been sending state troopers out to look for the missing Democrats.
"The troopers are under the direction of the new chief of the state patrol, Stephen Fitzgerald. He is the 68-year-old father of Jeff and Scott and was appointed to the $105,678 post this month by Governor Walker.
"Perhaps the speaker’s/majority leader’s father was a super choice, and the fact that he was suddenly at liberty after having recently lost an election for county sheriff was simply a coincidence that allowed the governor to recruit the best possible person for the job. You’d still think that if things are so dire in Wisconsin, the Fitzgerald clan would want to set a better austerity example."
Saturday, February 19, 2011
Sorry to be so quiet; just normal coping with Life, The Universe, And Everything. Stuff like one virus after another, transmitted via kindergarten, and a mare that is a month and a half overdue in delivering her foal, and slogging through out of season thaw mud, and teetering on ice everywhere after winter came back.
And the world is in such a serious state that I just have a hard time writing about everyday stuff. The world is changing. And the change is speeding up. And, in case you hadn't noticed; nobody is in charge.
And, what happens next is really, truly, entirely unpredictable. Maybe, for example, as a result of the exuberance in Tunisia and Egypt, we will have a shooting war in the next few days, in Wisconsin. Right next door to me.
Everything is that unstable; that insane.
It was learning something I hadn't realized about the situation in Wisconsin that motivated me to write this post. I had, I thought, been paying attention; but this little bit of background information had escaped me. It showed up in Gail Collins' NYT column. I read her regularly; and am very fond of her sense of humor, intelligence, and common sense. But the Wisconsin information was not something I expected to find, given the rest of her subject matter; and it hit me very, very hard.
You know, of course, that the newly elected Republican Governor of Wisconsin, along with the Republican controlled state Senate, is trying to pass legislation that will not only cut pay and benefits for the various public employees of the state, but which will also rescind their right to collective bargaining. Making them second-class citizens, with fewer rights than those who work elsewhere. You know, also, that the Democratic Senators have left the state, to deprive the Senate of the quorum needed to pass the legislation; since that was the only tool left to them.
Here was what I did not know, and what I have seen mentioned nowhere else:
Does that stink? Why yes, it does. Elitist power politics at its very, very worst, most corrupt, most Un-American, most obscene.
And it's being soft-pedaled by our press.
Remember, too- though usually considered a liberal-leaning state, Wisconsin also gave us McCarthy, and Proxmire; two politicians who did vast and enduring damage to the US democracy.
It does seem that the handbasket we are all in- is speeding up, daily.