Really, now the Gov is threatening to send layoff notices next week if the Senate Democrats don't bend, blink, become submissive and subservient to his agenda. This is democracy? To threaten workers with unemployment as retaliation for not getting his way on the budget bill? Then he'll say, "see, you made me do it."
Problem is, a lot of people will believe him. A lot of people watch Fox News and listen to Charlie Sykes and Rush Limbaugh. It's sad because this is all a charade, a feint - "Hey, look over there," while over here they are tearing to shreds the livelihoods of millions of US Americans, and thousands and thousands of Wisconsinites.
Hey, you can contract out that work to the private sector!!! Low wages, no benefits, lots of turnover, lots of abuse - but, hey, we'll save a few bucks and then we can lower taxes for the rich and for corporations even more!! Good deal for the Koch brothers (this link takes you to an article every Wisconsin resident ought to read) and the Club for Growth.
Rachel Maddow did a great job of exposing Walker's woeful incompetence in the matter of privatizing public workers when he was Milwaukee County Executive (see video below). His attempt wasn't even legal. Cost the strapped county hundreds of thousands of dollars. Now the guy is governor.We see what we have in store.
This guy is becoming really destructive. He is ripping people apart, driving wedges among struggling working people, unemployed, and underemployed. He's got a cushy job. He's got the backing of the Koch brothers and Fox News. So what has he got to lose? What did Sarah Palin have to lose, or Michelle Bachman? They both became millionaires whether or not they ever win another elective office.
The right takes care of its own.
Now the question is - will we Wisconsinites take care of the people who work for us? But more, much more - will we refuse to be divided, private sector workers v. public sector workers, unemployed v. those with jobs, folks with health insurance v. those without? Instead of trying to take rights and well-being away from one group of workers, will we come together instead to restore those rights in the private sector? Instead of seeking to lower the floor for wages and working conditions, will we struggle to have the floor raised for all workers?
There are other ways to balance the budget - like returning tax rates on wealth and on large corporations to where they once were - before Reagan, before the assault on the middle class, before the assault on worker rights and dignity, on government services and the public sector, on public education. One thing about this nation - though never perfect and always marred by inequality and injustice, it did create a very broad base for quality of life and democratic rights for a vast majority of its population. It ain't public workers that have eroded that. Nope, it is not them.
I promise you, this road on which Walker wants to take this state will not end well for the vast majority of us. There is more at stake here than a balanced budget.