Monday, February 28, 2011

Wisconsin - The Lies are Being Exposed

Scott Walker - Unbelievable Condescension and Sanctimony

Wisconsin Governor Mocks The President

Madison– Today President Obama again weighed in against Governor Walker’s proposal to balance the state’s budget deficit by having state government workers contribute a modest amount toward their own pensions and pay 12.6 percent toward their healthcare premiums.


In response to the President’s comments, the Governor’s Press Secretary Cullen Werwie issued the following statement:


I'm sure the President knows that most federal employees do not have collective bargaining for wages and benefits while our plan allows it for base pay. And I'm sure the President knows that the average federal worker pays twice as much for health insurance as what we are asking for in Wisconsin. At least I would hope he knows these facts.


Furthermore, I’m sure the President knows that we have repeatedly praised the more than 300,000 government workers who come to work every day in Wisconsin.


I’m sure that President Obama simply misunderstands the issues in Wisconsin, and isn’t acting like the union bosses in saying one thing and doing another."

Scott Walker- Arrogance Beyond Imagination

Wisconsin Governor Gives Senate Democrats An Ultimatum

Madison–One component of Governor Walker’s budget repair bill is debt refinancing, which will save taxpayers $165 million in fiscal year 2011. According to the Legislative Fiscal Bureau, if Senate Democrats refuse to return to Wisconsin and cast their votes in the next day the option to refinance a portion of the state’s debt will be off the table.


Along with this notice Governor Walker’s spokesman, Cullen Werwie, released the following statement:


Senate Democrats claimed they fled the state to slow down the process so the public had enough time to learn about the budget repair bill. If that was their true intention, they have been successful.


Now they have one day to return to work before the state loses out on the chance to refinance debt, saving taxpayers $165 million this fiscal year. Failure to return to work and cast their votes will lead to more painful and aggressive spending cuts in the very near future.


This is the Senate Democrats’ 24 hour notice."

Obama on Wisconsin: Obama speaks out on Wisconsin labor standoff - latimes.com

BY MICHAEL MUSKAL
LOS ANGELES TIMES

President Obama on Monday waded into the labor standoff in Wisconsin and warned that the rights of public employees should not be infringed upon.

Speaking to the National Governors Assn., Obama noted that many states as well as the federal government face tough economic choices. But the president, who has been criticized by some labor allies for not speaking out more forcefully on the Wisconsin situation, noted the fight between Wisconsin's public unions and the Republican administration in Madison."

Louisville - FOP president urges members to approve take-home car deal

BY SHELDON S SHAFER
LOUISVILLE COURIER-JOURNAL

The president of the Fraternal Order of Police lodge is strongly urging its members to ratify a tentative settlement in the three year dispute with the city over take-home patrol cars.

The rank and file of River City FOP Lodge 614 — approximately 1,200 current and retired officers — is scheduled to vote Tuesday on the proposed settlement of the legal fight over whether metro government can charge police officers for use of take-home cars without negotiating the fees under their collective-bargaining contract."

Wisconsin - Inside David Walker

Wisconsin: Sen. Dale Schultz (R) Will Vote Against Budget Repair Bill

BY DAVID DAYEN
FDL

Dale Schultz, the Republican State Senator who has been on the fence on the budget repair bill that will strip away public employee collective bargaining rights, will vote against the bill, according to protest organizer leadership. According to the Capitol City Leadership Committee, Schultz told State Sen. Lena Taylor (D) that he’s a no on the bill.

This was very expected among the community in Wisconsin. Schultz represents the 17th Senate District in Wisconsin, which Obama won 61-38 and even Kerry carried. Schultz has been a longtime moderate, and there are a lot of union members in his district. He offered a compromise, since removed, to sunset the collective bargaining restrictions after two years. He has been trying to find a way to bridge the gap here, and with the Republican leadership not budging, he finally had to side with the people and say no.

I would not be surprised if the Tea Party groups in Wisconsin reacted to this with a recall for Dale Schultz. The way recalls work in Wisconsin is that it basically sets up a do-over election. There is a special election called with a primary and then a general ballot. Schultz would have to face a Tea Party primary."

WISCONSIN BATTLE LINES SHIFTING

BY L S CARBONELL
LEZGETREAL

As reported this morning by NBC journalist Mike Taibbi, there are reports of negotiations between Democratic state senators and the few remaining moderate Republican senators in Wisconsin that could result in the defeat of Gov. Scott Walker’s “Budget Repair Bill.” As more Wisconsinites learn the full content of the bill, Walker’s support has been eroded. Public opinion had already turned against him on the collective bargaining issue, with 52% to 56% (depending on the poll) of Wisconsinites opposing it. The people of Wisconsin do support having public employees contribute to their benefits, by 71% in most polls, but that is a point that the unions across the country are agreeing to. The phone call from Buffalo Beast editor Ian Murphy last week, however, exposed the no-bid purchase of Wisconsin’s power plants and raised questions throughout the state about the need for these purchases to be done exclusively by Walker. Even the Assembly amendment allowing for legislative oversight was insufficient to quell qualms about Walker’s motives because Wisconsinites have already seen how far the Republican-majority legislature is willing to go to rubber-stamp Walker."

THE WISCONSIN BUDGET REPAIR BILL

Wisconsin Municipal League Position Paper On Collective Bargaining

Wisconsin Municipal League Explanation of The Budget Repair Bill

State's Explanation of The Budget Repair Bill

Budget Repair Bill

Budget Repair Bill Amendments

January personal spending edges up, incomes jump | Reuters

REUTERS
NEW YORK

(Reuters) - U.S. consumer spending rose less than expected in January as households took advantage of the largest increase in incomes in more than 1-1/2 years to rebuild their savings, government data showed on Monday."

Madison 360: Even allies backpedal from Walker's extremism

BY PAUL FANLUND
THE CAPITOL TIMES

Chris Christie, the Republican governor of New Jersey, achieved rock star notoriety this weekend when the New York Times Magazine featured him in an outsized profile, complete with Christie's humorless mug on the cover.
So what's the big deal about this large (the Times has him as 'fleshy') and bombastic East Coast politician?
Well, the writer says Christie has succeeded in stereotyping public workers, teachers especially, as the 'welfare queens' of our times. You may recall that Ronald Reagan attained the presidency — and was deified by conservatives — in part by exploiting that pejorative, with its race and gender undertones, to suggest the existence of mostly fictional hordes of undeserving welfare recipients."

Labor Shifts Resources to the States : Roll Call

By Bennett Roth and Bill Clark
ROLL CALL

Labor union activists held a rally in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday, but labor leaders say they are increasingly redirecting resources to several state legislatures that are considering bills that would curtail bargaining rights of unions.

Labor unions in the past two years have helped muscle President Barack Obama’s legislative agenda through Congress, but they are now redeploying their forces to a handful of battleground states to fend off a flurry of hostile bills"

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly In Madison

It Always Comes Down To The Gold

Budget stalemate as strong as ever - JSOnline

BY PATRICK MARLEY
MILWAUKEE JOURNAL-SENTINEL

Madison — Who will blink first?

Neither side is budging in Wisconsin's epic fight over union rights, but at some point the dispute must come to a head. And Tuesday could prove to be a crucial day.

Gov. Scott Walker says that is the deadline for the his budget-repair bill to pass because it includes a $165 million bond restructuring needed to shore up problems in the fiscal year that ends June 30. Tuesday is also the day Walker will deliver his two-year budget - one that will cut aid to schools and local governments by more than $1 billion, he said Sunday in television appearances.

Senate Minority Leader Mark Miller (D-Monona) has questioned the accuracy of Tuesday's deadline, but Walker has said he will have to lay off 1,500 state workers - and more later - if the bill doesn't pass soon."

Police Do Not Remove Protesters Last Night

Christie Spurs U.S. Governors to Try a Confrontational Statehouse Politics - Bloomberg

BY TIM JONES
BLOOMBERG

Barely 400 days into a tenure that began with his squeaking into office with 49 percent of the vote, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is emboldening other Republican chief executives to challenge the compact between governments and their workers.

The 48-year-old former U.S. attorney once was a singular voice of pugnacity. Now the Christie style is gaining disciples. Wisconsin, Indiana and Ohio have seen protests as Republican governors take on public-sector unions for cutbacks or restrictions on collective bargaining. They chose the same target at which Christie took aim last year."

Scott Walker's unprincipled rigidity

BY DANA MILBANK
WASHINGTON POST

'He's not one of us.'

That phrase, uttered in the fourth minute of what Scott Walker believed to be a private phone conversation, tells you everything you need to know about the rookie governor of Wisconsin.

Walker thought he was talking to a patron, conservative billionaire David Koch, but thanks to the amateurish management that seems to be a hallmark of his governorship, he was instead being punked by an impostor from a liberal Web site."

Walker's Push to Curtail Union Rights Makes Him an Outlier Among Governors - Bloomberg

BY WILLIAM SELWAY AND MARK NIQUETTE
BLOOMBERG

Iowa Governor Terry Branstad, elected in the November wave that put Republicans in command of most U.S. states, says a contract that grants government employees 15 percent raises and free health care is squeezing taxpayers.

If the union won’t renegotiate, Branstad plans to fire state workers. Yet he’s not following the lead of Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker by trying to circumscribe the benefits for which members can bargain, a move workers say would break the union.

“Every state’s got its own unique situation,” Branstad, 64, said in an interview in Washington, where the National Governors Association met during the weekend. “We don’t control the Legislature like they do in Wisconsin.”"

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Go Jimmy Go

Week In Review









Christie supports 'adversarial' collective bargaining - Politico Staff - POLITICO.com

By POLITICO STAFF | 2/27/11 10:52 AM EST

Chris Christie said Sunday that he believes in 'fair, adversarial' collective bargaining for New Jersey, but that he's confident Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker is doing what's best for his state.

Speaking on CBS's 'Face the Nation,' — and being pushed like so many other Republicans to take a stance on Walker's controversial plans to end collective bargaining for public workers — Christie insisted its inappropriate for him to 'micromanage' Wisconsin from hundreds of miles away. But he recalled his predecessor, Jon Corzine, pledging to public workers that he'd fight to get them a good contract."

Wisconsin - Journalism At Its Worst Moment - Disgraceful!

I spent most of Saturday afternoon talking with reporters in Madison and Milwaukee - I called them, they did not call me.  I tried to show them why the State of Wisconsin is not broke, entirely based on financial documents on the state's website.  They wanted no part of that.  They had not read any of the official documents and were relying entirely on press releases from the governor's office.  All were in a hurry to get me off the phone.  I felt like John Denver in the movie "O God."  What I witnessed was the most incompetent and disinterested "reporters" I have ever seen.  They did not even care about the links to the state financial documents.  In a condescending tone, they all told me to email the links to some obscure address dropdead@wkrp.com.

If you want to get the real facts about Scott Walker's scam, you will not get it from the Wisconsin press.  What a joke.

Walker shows no sign of conceding in Wis. battle - Meet the Press - msnbc.com


TOM CURRY
MSNBC

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker said on NBC’s Meet the Press Sunday that government workers’ collective bargaining rights have caused unsustainable costs and stuck to his demand that bargaining rights be curtailed for most public workers.
“If we do not get these changes, and the Senate Democrats don’t come back, we’re going to be forced to make up the savings in layoffs and that to me is just unacceptable,” he said.
Walker has been locked in a battle with his state’s public sector unions for the past four weeks over his proposal to strip the unions of most of their collective bargaining rights. His measure would apply not only to state employees but to those of local governments and school boards around the state.
Walker won last November with 52 percent of the vote, while Republicans won control of both houses of the Wisconsin legislature, both of which had Democratic majorities before the election.
Knowing they lacked the votes to defeat Walker's proposal, Democratic state senators fled to Illinois two weeks ago to deprive the Senate of the quorum needed in order to have a vote on the measure."

How The Governors Line Up With Scott Walker

Governors
25 Largest States
Red Back Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker
Blue Do Not Back Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker


Governor Walker has 14 governors supporting or leaning his way and 11 opposing him or leaning against him.  Only 9 supporting governors matter, because the other five are from "Plantation States" - Georgia, North Carolina, Virginia, Alabama, and South Carolina.  These five states are all former members of the Confederacy and still treat public workers very poorly - especially North Carolina and Virginia.  Collective bargaining is not an issue,  It is illegal for the most part.  Notice, we did not include Louisiana.  Thanks to Huey P. Long, workers in Louisiana actually have rights just like business owners and investors.

Some of the governors on both sides are wishy-washy and could change sides quickly, depending on the outcome in Wisconsin.  If Scott Walker prevails, it will be "Governors Gone Wild" for the next year.  If he is defeated, his power grab movement will be dead in the water.

At this point ( Sunday morning February 27, 2011), the odds are that the governor will prevail. Major  police and fire unions need to put the full court press on tomorrow.  It sure would help if public safety union leaders were in the Wisconsin Capitol and all over television, not just Hoffa.  Get on an airplane to Milwaukee tonight.  The Milwaukee cops and firefighters will get you to Madison if you just ask them.  Forget about the damn logo on your jacket and their jacket.

Texas Governor Rick Perry Goes With Scott Walker

Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal sides with Wisconsin governor in collective bargaining dispute

TIMES-PICAYUNE

Gov. Bobby Jindal weighed in last week on the high-profile standoff between Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and the Democrats who are trying to block his plan to limit the collective bargaining rights of public employees.

Jindal appears on a new website by the Republican Governors Association,Stand With Scott, designed to rally support for the newly elected chief executive as union members and their supporters rally on the streets of Madison. Jindal, in a message posted on the site, said Walker is "demonstrating remarkable political courage and showing what real leadership looks like."

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Protesters Across US Decry Wis. Anti-Union Efforts : NPR


















Today in Topeka, Kansas

NPR
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Rallies were held across the country Saturday to support thousands of protesters holding steady at the Wisconsin Capitol in their fight against Republican-backed legislation aimed at weakening unions.

Union supporters organized rallies from New York to Los Angeles in a show of solidarity as the protest in Madison entered its 12th straight day and attracted its largest crowd yet: more than 70,000 people. Hundreds banged on drums and screamed into bullhorns inside, while others braved frigid weather and snowfall during a rally that spilled into city streets."

The Fix Is On - No Labor Representatives on Sunday News Shows - Just Republicans


BY ALEX PAREENE

SALON

Unless anyone can be embarrassed into calling up someone who isn't on the pre-approved Sunday Show list of guests (ideologically ranging from Harold Ford to George Will), no one representing labor will be on the DC-based roundtable news shows that define the terms of the debate and 'set the agenda' for the Beltway press. 'Face the Nation' will slobber all over New Jersey's Chris Christie, though."

Wisconsin Assembly's GOP Leaders Score With Hurry-Up Offense : It's All Politics : NPR

BY FRANK JAMES
NATIONAL PUBLIC RADIO

"It's apt that in the state that's home to the Super Bowl champion Green Bay Packers, the Republican leadership of the Wisconsin State Assembly resorted to the political equivalent of the hurry-up offense to confound the Democrats on defense.

As is being widely reported Friday morning, the body's Republican leaders used a parliamentary maneuver to end days of a marathon debate over a budget-related bill that would greatly limit the power of the unions."

The Real Political Math In Wisconsin

BY HOWARD FINEMAN
HUFFINGTON POST

"WASHINGTON -- The real political math in Wisconsin isn't about the state budget or the collective-bargaining rights of public employees there. It is about which party controls governorships and, with them, the balance of power on the ground in the 2012 elections.

For all of the valid concern about reining in state spending -- a concern shared by politicians and voters of all labels -- the underlying strategic Wisconsin story is this: Gov. Scott Walker, a Tea Party-tinged Republican, is the advance guard of a new GOP push to dismantle public-sector unions as an electoral force."

Gov. Walker Reveals Entire Union-Busting Strategy to Prank Caller | MoveOn.Org

Gov. Walker Reveals Entire Union-Busting Strategy to Prank Caller | MoveOn.Org:

"You have to hear this: A blogger impersonating Tea Party billionaire David Koch called Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and got him to reveal his secret plan to lure Democrats back to the state. Phenomenal. Check it out"




Lies, Lies, and More Lies - Everywhere Lies

BY POLICEPAY.NET
NORMAN, OKLAHOMA

The states are not broke.  Most never had a decline in revenue during the last recession.  If there is any problem, it is with increased spending for people with no medical insurance.  It is certainly not "excessive pay" to employees.  It is not education, which has not kept pace with revenue growth.

Again, I repeat - the states are not going broke.  You can read it for yourself.  All you need is the latest "Comprehensive Annual Financial Report" for your state.  Go to the "Statistical Section" and find the page that says:

Changes in Fund Balances of Governmental Funds
(Modified Accrual Basis of Accounting)
For the Last Ten Fiscal Years

For the State of Wisconsin, it is page 224.  Here is a link to the Comprehensive Annual Financial Report

ftp://doaftp04.doa.state.wi.us/doadocs/2010CAFR_Linked.pdf

An Appeaser Is One Who Feeds a Crocodile, Hoping It Will Eat Him Last. - Winston Churchill

A Message To Police Officers and Firefighters In Wisconsin

BY POLICEPAY.NET
NORMAN, OKLAHOMA

If you think you have escaped Scott Walker's guillotine, you are deluding yourself.  Why do you think he was willing to exempt you from his purge?  He did not think that he could get the bill passed with you fighting him.  His plan was to keep you on the sidelines and then pick off the non-public safety works.  But, just like the Terminator, he has secretly promised "I'll be baaaaack", and he will - maybe even this year.  Soon you will find yourselves being led to the Bastille and sentenced to death by the "Enlightened."

Want to save yourself?  Save the highway workers - Pay It Forward.

"He was given a choice between war and dishonor. He chose dishonor and he will have war anyway."
Winston Churchill speaking about Chamberlain

Democratic governors criticize Wisconsin's Walker

Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley
BY DAN BALZ
WASHINGTON POST


With the Wisconsin state Assembly taking the first major legislative step toward enactment of a controversial law to sharply curtail collective bargaining rights of public workers, Democratic governors meeting in Washington offered pointed criticism of the plan's architect, Republican Gov. Scott Walker."

Walker Goes Ballistic - Threatens Massive Layoffs


Wisconsin Gov. Walker threatens to trigger layoffs for thousands of public workers

BY MICHAEL FLETCHER
WASHINGTON POST

MADISON, WIS. - The jobs of thousands of state and local workers slipped into deeper jeopardy Friday, as Gov. Scott Walker threatened to trigger as many as 12,000 layoffs beginning next week unless lawmakers enact his plan to strip public employees of most of their collective bargaining rights."

Friday, February 25, 2011

Hoffa Takes Center Stage


Fraud In Wisconsin

BY POLICEPAY.NET
NORMAN, OKLAHOMA

In one of the boldest political moves in history, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker has succeeded in selling a bottle of snake oil to the Wisconsin Assembly.  Championing himself as the savior of the state, the Governor has painted a picture of impending financial ruin, but on February 17th of this year (last week) he was painting a totally different scenario.

In record time, he has rammed through a bill to wipe out the right for many state and local government works from have fair representation, all the time telling two different stories.  Why was  the governor was saying something different on February 17th?  He was speaking to potential bond purchasers through the bond prospectus -PRELIMINARY OFFICIAL STATEMENT DATED  FEBRUARY 17, 2011  He was putting the lipstick on the same pig he is now selling us.  Read the prospectus for yourself   http://www.doa.state.wi.us/capitalfinance/market.asp?locid=168

Notice the table 1 predicts that the current fiscal year will have a $30 million profit for the year, not a $30 million loss.




























Page 2 A-17

Look at Table 2.  It paints a rosy scenario for the national economy, not financial ruin.



























Page 10 A-15


Look at these predictions for 2012 and 2013 - revenue growth every year. 



























Page 12 A-17

Since 2003, governmental revenue has been up every year.  FYE June 30, 2010 was a record high.

Wisconsin Governor To Hold Press Conference

LIVE Coverage From NBC15 News: Governor Walker 5:00PM CST Press Conference

Live Coverage At 5:00 PM CST

National Governors Association: Wisconsin showdown looms over national governors' meeting - latimes.com

BY MICHAEL MEMOLI
LOS ANGELES TIMES

Reporting from Washington — The showdown in Wisconsin between Republican Gov. Scott Walker and state public employee unions has injected an ideological flash point into what is traditionally a non-partisan annual gathering of the nation's governors in Washington this weekend.

For years, the National Governors Assn. meeting here has been an opportunity for states' chief executives from both parties to lock arms in the name of solving problems while castigating the blood sport of politics in the nation's capital. The meeting offers governors the opportunity to share best practices and lobby federal officials on behalf of mutual concerns."

Wisconsin Democrats Boycott Vote

Wisconsin's Peter Barca: Scott Walker "trampled on democracy" - Political Hotsheet - CBS News





Wisconsin's Peter Barca: Scott Walker "trampled on democracy" - Political Hotsheet - CBS News: "Governor Scott Walker's controversial budget measure that would strip most public employee unions of their collective bargaining rights moved forward in the wee hours Friday morning, when Wisconsin Republicans surprised Democrats by abruptly ending debate and passing the bill through the state assembly before Democrats could stop them.

On Friday's live edition of Washington Unplugged, Wisconsin representative Peter Barca, the Democratic leader in the state assembly, gave CBS News senior White House correspondent Bill Plante his impression of what happened.

'It was quite a scene last night in the capitol,' Barca said. '[Republicans] trampled on democracy though throughout the day and really throughout this past week.'"

Obama Breaks Pledge To Wear Out Some Shoe Leather In Support Of Collective Bargaining - Rick Ungar - The Policy Page - Forbes

BY RICK UNGAR
FORBES

Those who visit The Policy Page on a regular basis are fully aware that I have the highest regard for the President of the United States.

That said, I have grown increasingly troubled that President Obama has not taken a stronger stand over the past week in support of the public employee unions in Wisconsin."

Most Republicans in Wisconsin's congressional delegation are staying out of collective bargaining debate - JSOnline

CRAIG GILBERT
MILWAUKEE JOURNAL SENTINEL

While Wisconsin’s Republican members of Congress have offered moral support to Gov. Scott Walker, most are declining to take a stand on the explosive issue behind the state’s budget standoff: collective bargaining rights for public employees.

In an interview Thursday, House Budget chair Paul Ryan of Janesville praised Walker’s leadership. But asked whether he supports Walker’s proposal to curtail collective bargaining, Ryan said, “I’m not going to get into that. I’m not a student of state budgets. I stick to my silo … I’ve got my own problems to work on at the federal level.”

Also interviewed Thursday, GOP House freshman Reid Ribble of DePere was critical of Democratic state senators boycotting the legislature, but said he was pleased that demonstrations have been peaceful and said, “I don’t have any problems with the protests going on"

Wisconsin Democrats consider legal challenge

BY CARY SPIVAK
MILWAUKEE JOURNAL ENTINEL

Madison --Assembly Democrats are reviewing tapes of the chaotic early morning vote approving the budget repair bill to see if any laws were violated, Minority Leader Peter Barca, (D-Kenosha) said Friday.

'We'll explore our legal options,' Barca said.

Barca said if violations are found it is possible the Democrats could launch a legal challenge of the vote which could result in 'that vote being invalidated.' He declined to say how likely that a legal challenge would be mounted.

During a 20-minute Capitol press conference, an obviously tired Barca complained both about the bill, it's impact on workers and the manner in which it was passed about 1a.m. following 61hours of debate."

Wisconsin - Stampede Is Close To Succeeding

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Updated: 12:10 p.m. | State Senate Republicans gave preliminary approval Friday of a budget-repair bill that eliminates most collective bargaining for public unions, but they were unable to send the bill to Gov. Scott Walker because of a weeklong boycott of the session by Democrats"

Ohio elected officials speak out against SB 5

Steve Fogarty
Chronicle Telegram

Elyria - Area police, fire and city union representatives staunchly defended the benefits of collective bargaining Thursday that is at the heart of the contention over Ohio Senate Bill 5, a measure that seeks to bar unions from bargaining for wages and benefits.
The proposed bill is especially relevant for union representatives, who have just concluded negotiations on new contracts that called for concessions.
“I take issue with a bunch of politicians who try to portray unions as the cause of the problems states are having, instead of focusing on all the stupid earmarks and spending on ridiculous projects that make them look good,” North Ridgeville police Lt. and FOP union spokesman Larry Swenk said."

The War Against America's Finest Continues

POLICEPAY.NET
NORMAN, OKLAHOMA

Unrepentant conservatives turn up the battle cry in their attempt to emasculate public employee collective bargaining,  Embittered public employees lash back with even sharper tones.  In a melodrama that could have resounding consequences for our country, the protagonists, spearheaded by the Tea Party, have taken on the persona of crusaders who believe that they are divinely inspired and implored to slay the heretics of capitalism - labor unions.  With self-conferred absolution, members of the party of the "right" exempt their consciences from guilt and shame as they go about their acts in plain view.

As of tonight, it appears that President Obama has suddenly become consumed with apathy when he is needed the most by America's Finest.  Hope still lingers that Vice-President Biden can bring him out of this indifference.

The thirty year truce between public employees and employers appears to be in its final hours of life as the pretenders to the throne emerge from the shadows.  Just days ago, James Hoffa the younger was seen leading leading public workers in protest inside the Wisconsin Capitol.  Soon, this son of a giant among labor leaders will lead an advance on the just rejected police officers in this country.  With a very strong foothold in Iowa,  Hoffa and his truck drivers will be offering solace to the scorned.  This will be Hoffa's "finest hour."  But, it won't take long for Messieurs Lynch, DeLord, Delagnes, Cabal, Nee, Boyd, and Meagan to be rehabilitated in the eyes of America's  mayors.  In defense of Mr. Hoffa, he measures success in terms of results and a lot of police officers will be interested in "keeping score."

The dark ages of public employee relations is only days away from its debut and that isn't all bad.  For the most part, public safety unions of today are inept, incompetent, and ineffective.  The members of these organization, best described as pseudo unions, are more concerned about protecting the public than having a slick Madison Avenue political machine.  They really believe in what they do.  I realize that this is a naive philosophy in today's narcissistic and hedonistic world, but that is just the way it is.

Less than ten years ago, these servants of the people were held up as saviors.  Today, they are castigated as egocentric drains on the pocketbooks of the electorate.  Ironically, most of the people making those claims have much higher incomes and net worth than the ones they sanctimoniously look down on.

Will things ever return to normal?  Perhaps some day in the distant future, but not before the years of "living in our ashes" (DeLord circa 1980) brought about by the Napoleonic slaying of Robespierre and the Enlightened Committee of Public Safety.  The age of "diplomacy by other means" has begun.  Maybe taking a new direction and never looking back is the best course.

The blazing speed that this revolt against the constabletory convened itself is hard to comprehend.  Protocol and process has been dispatched in favor of expediency and outcome.  The purge has begun and it will not end until the vicars of capitalism have satisfied their lust for blood.

Wisconsin battle a statement of values

BY DAVID SIROTA
SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE

As the latest showdown to dominate American politics, the battle between Wisconsin's governor and public employees carries many unspoken messages. It tells us that Republicans do not see collective bargaining as a fundamental human right. It also suggests that Democrats are willing - finally! - to draw a line in the sand. But most important, it shows what government really sees as its top priority."

Wisconsin Police Sent to Search for Democratic Senators - Los Angeles Times

 

By James Kelleher

MADISON, Wis., Feb 24 (Reuters) - Wisconsin Republicans  dispatched police to the homes of absent Democratic senators on Thursday to try to round them up for a vote on a plan to strip public sector unions of most collective bargaining rights.  While the search failed to find the Democrats, it raised
the stakes as Gov. Scott Walker's self-imposed deadline of Friday for approving the proposal neared.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Obama Sitting Out Union Fights - WSJ.com

BY JONATHAN WEISMAN
WALL STREET JOURNAL

President Barack Obama, after initially lending his support to organized labor, has stepped back from the fights spreading in state capitals from Wisconsin to Tennessee, leaving union officials divided about his tactics.


The fight by public sector unions for collective bargaining rights in Wisconsin moved to the nation's capital Wednesday. But with both sides refusing to budge, a prolonged stand-off appears likely. WSJ's Neil Hickey reports.


Democratic officials said that with Mr. Obama heading into battles over the federal budget, a plunge into the fray over public-sector collective bargaining could weaken his position as a deal-maker in Washington."

Cleveland - Police and fire unions say they will make Ohio Republicans pay for proposal limiting collective bargaining

CPPA President Steve Loomis
BY REGINALD FIELDS
CLEVELAND PLAIN DEALER

COLUMBUS, Ohio - Police and fire unions upset over a bill in the Ohio Statehouse that would sharply restrict collective bargaining say they will make sure Republicans supporting the proposal pay at the ballot box next year and beyond.
But the Ohio Republican Party head says GOP lawmakers need not worry because most voters agree that public union workers have taxpayer-funded salaries and benefit packages that are far too generous and support changes to the bargaining system."


"I think what is going to end up happening is you are going to make a lot of conservative-leaning safety forces liberal-leaning. It is going to make a lot of Democrats out of Republicans," said Cleveland police union president Stephen Loomis, who said 70 percent of the officers in his membership are conservatives.

Jesse Jackson joins Ohio union workers in opposition to collective bargaining reform

Jesse Jackson in Wisconsin
BY JOE GUILLEN
CLEVELAND PLAIN DEALER

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- The Rev. Jesse Jackson revved up union workers at a downtown rally today to oppose Senate Bill 5, a Republican-backed proposal to overhaul the state's collective bargaining law.
A few hundred laborers packed the basement of a Teamsters union hall, a day after about 5,500 union supporters descended on the Statehouse to oppose the bill, which is supported by Republican Gov. John Kasich."

Wisconsin Citizens Financially Strapped? Ha!

RECORD HIGH PERSONAL INCOME

  

Michigan's Finances On The Rocks? Ha!

RECORD HIGH REVENUE

Pages 224 and 225 2009 CAFR
2010 CAFR Not Released

Ohio Finances On The Rocks? Ha!

RECORD HIGH REVENUE

Page 268 2010 CAFR

Wisconsin Finances On The Rocks? Ha!

RECORD HIGH REVENUE

Page 224 of 2010 CAFR


Over the last ten years, here are the annual growth rates:

Total Expenditures     3.55%
Education                     2.45%
Human Relations       5.10%

You can't blame the school teachers.  They have been short changed.