February 13, 2011

Today, at the Wisconsin Capitol square, a protest against Governor Scott Walker's plan to fix the budget.

The plan hits unions hard, and this is what we saw today...

Kids, perched on a rapidly melting mound of snow, hold signs saying "Hands Off Our Unions," "Save My Future," and "Save My School":

P1060378

It was a very low key crowd. Note the sign that says: "Bullying Is NOT the Answer! Fix if the Plan Needed!" I'm not really sure what that means. Is Scott Walker a bully? Okay. I understand that feeling but are you saying that if the plan is needed... what? It should still be fixed or are you conceding that we'll need to do it if it's necessary?

P1060375

That's me in the white jacket, posing with with the crowd:

P1060387

You can see that it wasn't a very big crowd. There was an effort to get cars to honk, and when they honked, the honkees went "Wooo!"

There were no speakers and no chants. There was one man — I have video but I'm not posting it — who seemed a bit disoriented, who did something that is comically easy to do in a low-key protest. He started speaking, haranguing, like he was the leader. The group of nice, tolerant people did nothing to shoo him away. It was rather touching, even as it underlined the ineffectiveness of the protest.

It was a beautiful, unseasonably warm Sunday, and our new governor has just dropped a shocking union-busting proposal that our newly Republican legislature is likely to step up and pass. This is the push-back from the unions?

P1060408

Impeach Walker? I don't think so.

166 comments:

PaulV said...

Why would republican legislature impeach the one who we waited for>

Expat(ish) said...

I love the scent of Federalism in the morning.

-XC

rhhardin said...

Apparently the Republican govenment isn't taking bribes at the moment, leaving few options for unions.

dont tread 2012 said...

Union flail.

DADvocate said...

What's worse corporate greed or public union greed. Corporations pay taxes. Public unions demand more taxes to pay their already over pampered members.

Mark O said...

Shouldn't he step down and turn the state over to the National Guard?

save_the_rustbelt said...

Ohio Governor Kasich, the former Congressman turned Lehman Brothers executive turned Governor, is going to crush public employee unions, cut spending, put economic development in private hands, ignore the public records act and possibly sell the Ohio Turnpike.

None of this will likely create any jobs (his campaign promise) but he certainly is gonna stir things up.

He is currently in trouble because almost every appointee in his administration is a middle aged white male, supposedly because they are the only qualified people in the state. Hmmmm.

David said...

Why is the proposal shocking? It confronts one of the central causes of budget imbalances, the compensation and benefits that public employee unions have been able to leverage through a combination of political pressure and bargaining. You can't address the sources of their political power without infringing in freedom of speech and political rights. Thus you attack the bargaining power.

Perhaps the shock is how direct and prompt the proposal is.

CoffeeNut said...

The "Impeach Walker Now" lady looks like she has to pee.

Maguro said...

Looks like a bunch of privileged white people to me.

Harsh Pencil said...

"He is currently in trouble because almost every appointee in his administration is a middle aged white male, supposedly because they are the only qualified people in the state. Hmmmm."

The house is burning. I don't give a rat's ass if the firefighters are all white men (or whatever).

Jay said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Michael said...

They should get puppets from the anti war people. Puppets are critical for protests.

Henry said...

Hey, don't knock middle aged.

Maguro said...

Ohio Governor Kasich, the former Congressman turned Lehman Brothers executive turned Governor, is going to crush public employee unions, cut spending, , ignore the public records act and possibly sell the Ohio Turnpike.

Oh, and what's your plan too save the rustbelt? High-speed choo-choos?

chickelit said...

Are they surprised that they garner little support?

Imagine a teacher's strike at this point in time.

BTW, they all look very well fed.

Revenant said...

I'm sure that the citizens of lily-white Ohio are absolutely outraged -- outraged! -- that there aren't more affirmative action hires in the state capital.

roesch-voltaire said...

A peaceful organized protest group that was not a TP demonstration-- how can that be? Let us see how many show up tomorrow, slowly building as in Egypt?

Revenant said...

Let us see how many show up tomorrow, slowly building as in Egypt?

Well, in Egypt it took a few days before government employees started showing up to "protest". :)

edutcher said...

If bullying isn't the answer, how do they explain 80 years of Organized Labor?

save_the_rustbelt said...

Ohio Governor Kasich, the former Congressman turned Lehman Brothers executive turned Governor, is going to crush public employee unions, cut spending, put economic development in private hands, ignore the public records act and possibly sell the Ohio Turnpike.

Good for him.

None of this will likely create any jobs (his campaign promise) but he certainly is gonna stir things up.

About time.

Creating jobs will require repealing all those union-friendly policies of the Demos and cutting the taxes the unions love that pay their salaries.

He is currently in trouble because almost every appointee in his administration is a middle aged white male, supposedly because they are the only qualified people in the state. Hmmmm.

In trouble with whom? The Lefties?

Not filling state positions with affirmative action hires?

Maybe he actually wants people who know what they're doing.

PS The unions have been throwing the Lehman Brothers thing at Kasich since the primaries. Note how effective it's been.

ironrailsironweights said...

A man met this rather ugly woman at a singles bar after he'd had a bit too much to drink. He had quite a case of beer goggles and ended up asking her back to his place. After they finished Doing the Dirty Deed, the woman spent several minutes rubbing the man's cojones. He liked it, of course, but was a bit puzzled why she was doing it so much, and asked her.

"I miss mine," she replied.

Peter

Chip Ahoy said...

Mmmmm, peaches.

MadisonMan said...

I'm not sure how Union-busting solves Wisconsin's horrible budget problems.

That's the problem with a lot of the messages I get. There is no suggested alternative to fixing the budget hole. Even if union-busting doesn't solve the budget problem, complaining about it without offering an alternative sounds very NIMBYish to me.

edutcher said...

roesch-voltaire said...

A peaceful organized protest group that was not a TP demonstration-- how can that be?

A bunch of union slugs, perhaps?

If it was real people, roesch might have had something.

James said...

I can't wait to see the reaction when Walker takes a page from Doyle's book and cross out single words from bills or rephrase pending legislation to fit what he wants.

Fen said...

Union Thugs whining that their host is finally dying.

Fen said...

I do love the last pic. So typical of Union work - one guy holding the sign, four others standing around watching.

garage mahal said...

No "Press 1 for Englesh Maron!" signs. Tea Partiers only protest in the summer, it seems.

roesch-voltaire said...

Yep those pictures show union thugs-- those women and kids why they could not possible be real people, because we on this blog get to define who is real and who is not, and anyone we disagree with is not.

edutcher said...

Revenant said...

I'm sure that the citizens of lily-white Ohio are absolutely outraged -- outraged! -- that there aren't more affirmative action hires in the state capital.

Revenant should perhaps go to Ohio before making pronouncements about Ohio.

chickelit said...

Is anybody even talking concessions? All I hear from the Cap Times article is a fundamental threat to Union's existence.

I'm OK with a fundamental threat to double-dipping.

Michael said...

RV: The reason you don't see thugs is because this protest is, what do you guys call it, astroturf.

chr1 said...

Who are you calling "honkees"?

It just goes to show your racism. Hands off our unions!

garage mahal said...

Is anybody even talking concessions?

No. Walker said there isn't anything to negotiate. Meaning he doesn't need to negotiate. Yes we're talking Napoleon Complex already.

EDH said...

Eat at Teddy Wedgers.

Sounds dirty.

Synova said...

"Looks like a bunch of privileged white people to me."

LOL.

Jason (the commenter) said...

Althouse: This is the push-back from the unions?

Their big hope was to elect Obama, so he could magically fix everything. Now that it's obvious that fantasy isn't going to work out they have nothing to hope for.

Jason (the commenter) said...

I think Althouse should have joined the picket with a big sign that read:

"Malaise Forever!"

k*thy said...

As a state employee, I'm pretty sure everyone was expecting cuts or some sort, but what Walker has done is go beyond that by saying that he won't even try to negotiate, plus he is playing favorites with who this affects and who it doesn't.

Public employee unions that endorsed Walker = Essential and untouchable.
Public employee unions that didn't endorse Walker = Evil that must be cleansed with fire!
Welcome to "Pay to Play" Walker style.

Synova said...

"Yep those pictures show union thugs-- those women and kids why they could not possible be real people, because we on this blog get to define who is real and who is not, and anyone we disagree with is not."

Of course they are real people.

What is this, anyone "real" is automatically right?

Nothing about being "real" makes them right. Not even their worthiness, assuming they are worthy, creates funds out of thin air.

Someone has to pay the bills. Most people seem to know that. Or perhaps more accurately, most people who aren't public employees seem to know that.

MadisonMan said...

Walker said there isn't anything to negotiate.

Which is a ridiculous statement. You cannot balance the state budget by making state employees pay more for insurance or pensions. This is just a move to get rid of Unions. Well, then what?

It would be very interesting to see what happens when (if?) Milwaukee County declares bankruptcy. I read a lot about the possibility of that happening back in the Summer, but lately nothing. Not sure what's happened. I wonder if the State Govt would step in to fix Walker's mess?

Sixty Grit said...

Poor liberals and communists - they are getting to be less and less popular with each passing deficit. Good riddance to the leeches.

WV: meadat - althouse, obviously.

Tim said...

Why would anyone anywhere ever negotiate with any union if they absolutely didn't have to?

MadisonMan said...

I've never had a Teddywedger. Are they worth it?

I'd rather eat at Ian's just down the block from there.

Synova said...

"Public employee unions that endorsed Walker = Essential and untouchable.
Public employee unions that didn't endorse Walker = Evil that must be cleansed with fire!
Welcome to "Pay to Play" Walker style.
"

Which public employee unions endorsed Walker?

It really does matter, if you're going to accuse him of "pay to play" because it's sounds nefarious enough but what if the only public employee unions that endorsed him were the fire fighters and sanitation workers, what then?

AJ Lynch said...

I bet most govt workers appreciate that they at least have a job today. Hence, the low turnout.

Re Kasich, if that is true, his appts sound like today's average union leader who are fat & flabby, not too smart and mostly white. They have failed to adapt to a changing world [for examples, think UAW]. Many are the sons and grandsons of union leaders who actually were smart and capable. But today's union chiefs prove nepotism leads to failure you know like the younger Sulzberger is proving at the NY Times.

AST said...

It's the latest grassroots movement: Save Our Sinecures.

Time to reprint The Future And Its Enemies.

Tim said...

Does Wisconsin not have statutory civil service protections?

And no, "union" + "CBA" does not = "civil service protections."

MadisonMan said...

I bet most govt workers appreciate that they at least have a job today. Hence, the low turnout.

It's more likely they were enjoying the first decent weather day in months. Man was it nice to walk around today! The Garden Expo was also packed.

It appears, by the way, that Wisconsin civic entities cannot declare bankruptcy unless the State Govt okays it. So never mind to my previous question, although I still ponder the finances of Milwaukee County.

Tim said...

Maybe Wisconsin need taxpayers to establish their own union, to demand their Governor and Legislature don't increase their co-payments for other union progams.

AJ Lynch said...

I guess the Wisconsin state workers did not hear that California had to cut state workers's work week by 10-20% in many cases.

And a WI college professor, or paper pusher or school teacher would like to be treated just like a cop or fireman? Well, life can seem so unfair sometimes.

Synova said...

School teachers have an incredible, intrinsic, measure of public trust.

When the public gets so far as to rebel against that, things have gone very far indeed.

garage mahal said...

You cannot balance the state budget by making state employees pay more for insurance or pensions. This is just a move to get rid of Unions. Well, then what?

Cement filling wetland grabs for his real estate donor/friends, logging in state parks to piss off liberals. And more upper end tax cuts. Keep those fucking coming.

Bushman of the Kohlrabi said...

Cry me a river.

Tim said...

Maybe Wisconsin's Governor and Legislature should impose a progressive transaction tax equal to the state's income tax rate on union contributions to fund those ever-so-totally-critical public programs the unions are so committed to defending, nice weather notwithstanding.

rhhardin said...

The economics of unions via Maggie's Farm and Betsy's Page.

Lem said...

Hands off our seven course meal.

Sixty Grit said...

I like the "Impeach Now" sentiment. Along with "Dissent is the Highest Form of Patriotism", "He's Not My President", "End This/Less War", and Kerry Edwards bumper stickers, I think it is high time those made a big comeback.

Seriously, I did see a Kerry Edwards bumper sticker on a car today. Communists - stupid, but slow.

AJ Lynch said...

Yeah there won't be a heck of a lot of public empathy for govt workers.

Let's face it,in most states, the local govt funds a large portion of public school budgets. So protests by state workers will fall on deaf ears IMO.

AJ Lynch said...

"Hands off my seven course meal".

That's very funny Lem.

Joe Veenstra said...

Walker was endorsed by the police and fire unions. He is doing nothing to their benefits or collective bargaining rights. Also, interestingly, Manufacturers & Commerce began running adverts pitting private employees against public employees the same day Walker announced this proposal, encouraging people to call their legislators to support the Walker plan. It is pretty surprising indeed that he plans to eliminate 50 years of collective bargaining with these folks in basically one week without even meeting with the leadership of the unions beforehand. I know a lot of teachers who are not very political who are pretty pissed.

Revenant said...

Revenant should perhaps go to Ohio before making pronouncements about Ohio.

Sarcasm isn't your strong suit, I take it.

Seven Machos said...

This is just a move to get rid of Unions. Well, then what?

Well, what do you do with something that has amply served its own stated purposes and achieved its own stated objectives 100 fold?

Seven Machos said...

I know a lot of teachers who are not very political who are pretty pissed.

Yeah. I bet so. Look what happens when you price yourself out of a market while at the same time remaining a vital commodity -- not easy to do, but apparently possible.

Of course, nobody ever accused education majors of being the smartest bunch.

Bushman of the Kohlrabi said...

It would be very interesting to see what happens when (if?) Milwaukee County declares bankruptcy. I read a lot about the possibility of that happening back in the Summer, but lately nothing. Not sure what's happened. I wonder if the State Govt would step in to fix Walker's mess?

lol. You obviously haven't followed the history of Milwaukee County's financial woes. Here's a hint - it had something to do with public employees feeding like pigs at a trough.

Rose said...

have they gone back to handpainted signs? They realized the preprinted slick ones and the purple T-shirts weren't very "grassroots"? Or is this the real deal?

garage mahal said...

Damn ObamKKKare. I mean WalkerKKKare. Rates done gone up already.

Michele said...

Did you see any protestors from Illinois? Sometimes they march with "Raise Our Taxes" signs.

Calypso Facto said...

When I brought up this potential protest in the last thread, Kent said: "Why am I suddenly experiencing the highly unappetizing vision of dozens upon dozens of beefy, perennially cosseted batteners-upon-the-state-teat... "
And voila, Althouse delivers pictorially.

When I talked with University people considering attending (though, curiously, not union members), I said "Absolutely. Go protest if you think this is unfair. But-- bring alternate solutions for balancing the budget, and don't bring kids." I see, somehow, they got it backwards again. All about appearance over substance.

kent said...

"We don’t have money to mow the parks or fill the potholes, and we certainly don’t have money for the cops we need. So what does our city council spend its time on? We vote to pull out of Iraq, and to impeach the president and the vice president. We debate the Tibetan flag, and the Palestinian right of return, and whether to embrace Rafa in Gaza as our sister city, and whether it’s right to give hungry people a turkey on Thanksgiving, because it’s violence against the birds."

Actions. Consequences.

kent said...

Meaning he doesn't need to negotiate. Yes we're talking Napoleon Complex already.

"I won."

garage mahal said...

Wonder if Walker or state Republicans will ditch their evil government sponsored health care. If form holds true with any Republican on the hypocrisy scale, I would have to say no.

kent said...

Puppets are critical for protests.

Otherwise referred to as "SEIU goons."

Lincolntf said...

$10,000 per student, per 160 days of education. That's what the grotesquely overfunded education bureaucracy spends on not educating American children every year.
Every classroom of 25 kids you hear about is a quarter of a million dollars spent, and they still demand more. Incorrigible hucksters.

Seven Machos said...

Garage -- Does Wisconsin have a state-sponsored health plan? If so, awesome. More power to it. That's what's call local action, and we need more of it, not some dopey one-size-fits-all policy from a centralized politburo, where decisions cannot be made fast enough and where the decision makers cannot possibly know the necessary facts on the ground.

I also note the Wisconsin is reportedly broke. Could it have something to do with the state-supported health plan in addition to huge promised payments that the state will not be able to make?

I urge you to read a book I think I may exist. It's called Money; Despite what leftists believe, that shit don't grow on trees.

kent said...

Oh, and what's your plan too save the rustbelt? High-speed choo-choos?

High-speed choo-choos are a healing balm unto the lame and the halt, and bring sweet, sweet sunlight to the eyes of the blind. You soulless and insensitive monster, you.

Synova said...

"Wonder if Walker or state Republicans will ditch their evil government sponsored health care. If form holds true with any Republican on the hypocrisy scale, I would have to say no."

Employer sponsored health care? What is hypocritical about having employer sponsored health care?

Is Walker taking away the health insurance of some other state employee or school teacher? Please, do tell.

kent said...

those women and kids why they could not possible be real people, because we on this blog get to define who is real and who is not, and anyone we disagree with is not.

Nancy Pelosi: Tea parties are part of an ‘astroturf’ campaign by ‘some of the wealthiest people in America.’

murgatroyd666 said...

As a state employee, I'm pretty sure everyone was expecting cuts or some sort, but what Walker has done is go beyond that by saying that he won't even try to negotiate, plus he is playing favorites with who this affects and who it doesn't.

Yeah, any head of government who just smiled, said "I won," and refused to negotiate with his political opponents would have to be a real frackin' asshole! Right k*thy?

And playing favorites... Wow, that's really beyond the pale. Absolutely unheard-of.

MadisonMan said...

Could it have something to do with the state-supported health plan in addition to huge promised payments that the state will not be able to make?

What huge payments are those?

I'd like Walker to pare down the spending on prisons in this state. In addition the other suggestions I made last week. WI spends way more on prisons than neighboring states (Let's ignore IL in this comparison).

Seven Machos said...

Madison -- Pensions.

garage mahal said...

Employer sponsored health care? What is hypocritical about having employer sponsored health care?

So the gummint is an employer? oh my.

Seven Machos said...

Did Walker start the health care?

peter hoh said...

The bottom of the sign that failed the clarity test was intended to look like this:

"Fix it" Plan
needed!

The quote marks make the "it" look like an "if."

The "the" was scratched out.

A note to sign makers out there: pick up a copy of this book.

garage mahal said...

I always wondered where "I Won!" came from - and according to kent's own link, was born from "according to sources familiar with the conversation.". Figures.

Calypso Facto said...

Hey Madison Man, what thread did you post recommendations in? I'm sincerely interested.

kent said...

.. and, speaking of hard leftist cities piddling and diddling about, instead of focusing on the genuinely vital aspects of their own fiscal well-being:

"On Tuesday, on the recommendation of its Peace and Justice Commission, the Berkeley City Council is set to vote on a resolution to invite 'one or two cleared' Guantanamo Bay detainees to resettle in Berkeley.

Peace and Justice Commissioner Rita Maran told me that the idea was to invite to Berkeley 'the kind of people you'd like to have living next door to you or dating your cousin.'"


"Progressive" subnorms, in all their intrinsically repellent glory. Absolutely, inarguably beyond any and all attempts at parody. ROTFLMAO!!!

Calypso Facto said...

Garage: First person report from Minority Whip (at the time), Eric Cantor. Eric Cantor went to the White house on day three of President Obama's presidency. At the time, Obama and Democrats had total control of the White House, Senate and House. Cantor tried to share ideas with President Obama for stimulating the economy and creating jobs. When Cantor pushed for small business tax-cuts, President Obama said,

"Elections have consequences, and at the end of the day, I won."

Peter Hoh said...

Dammit, I added a link, and my post disappeared.

The sign that failed the legibility test was supposed to read:

"Fix it" Plan
needed!

The quotation mark is too close to the "t," making it look like an "f."

The sign maker crossed out the word "the."

Synova said...

Seriously, Garage.

Are you suggesting that as governor Walker is... self employed? What?

Please explain why you think that it is hypocritical of Walker to keep his "government sponsored health-care?"

Go ahead and argue that state employees have health-care that is unseemly cushy and maybe he's a hypocrite for not having the same as other state employees and I'll be right there with you.

But are you REALLY suggesting that his *job* not include health care AT ALL?

Are you really?

garage mahal said...

Clay-Ipsto!
Cantor is about as reliable as a kent link. Nothing like a dirty east sider like you or myself =-)

Seven Machos said...

Pauline Kael didn't know anyone who voted for Nixon, Garage. So what?

MadisonMan said...

I don't remember now. I think I suggested a 15% across the board cut, and axing DPI and ECB. And Legislative staff should be cut in half :)

Synova said...

Because, garage, if you're saying that some sort of "universal" health care is the same as the health insurance held by government employees or those in elected office you really do know better than that and lying for political points is beneath you.

kent said...

I always wondered where "I Won!" came from - and according to kent's own link [...]

As reported by HuffPo, Politico, DailyKos and ThinkProgress (among others), you mean? Proud worshippers of The Boy King, one and all?

Congratulations. You've just dwindled past "feeble," all the way down to publicly and humiliatingly impotent.

Again.

MadisonMan said...

Seven: Wisconsin is not threatened with a looming pension explosion. I don't know why this keeps being suggested. If the Stock Market tanks, there might a problem, but even then I don't think the state is on the hook.

AFAIK, the only pension issue is that Walker wants State Workers to contribute more to it -- but I think that's just a shift from the State doing all to a split.

I think WRS should re-jigger how it defines benefits. Using the last three years' salary just invites weird shenanigans in the last three years of any state workers employ.

garage mahal said...

But are you REALLY suggesting that his *job* not include health care AT ALL?

I don't care if he does or doesn't have health care, but I think he should lead by example and pay his own way. Him and Ron Johnson. If they think government run health care is evil why are they accepting it?

garage mahal said...

As reported by HuffPo, Politico, DailyKos and ThinkProgress (among others), you mean?

You're the one who linked to it. Are those your fact checkers?

kent said...

Are those your fact checkers?

Doubling down on your fail, eh? Fine by me:

"Democratic and Republican aides confirmed the exchange."

How grey and awful it must be to be you, most days.

Calypso Facto said...

Maybe after threatening actual pay and benefits, people will be more open to Public Instruction and PBS like you suggest, MM. But I wouldn't bet on it. Walker would just be subjected to the"he hates children" attacks. He was certainly smart not to tackle fire and police unions immediately for the same reason.

I don't know how the pension fund is doing, but almost all defined benefit plans are seriously under water. I do know there is an immediate problem: "The deficit for the state of Wisconsin is $136.7 million for the current biennial budget, according to new figures from the State Budget Office
that gets MUCH worse soon: the next two-year budget, which is estimated to have a $3.6 billion shortfall
Nothing should be off the table.

Synova said...

"I don't care if he does or doesn't have health care, but I think he should lead by example and pay his own way. Him and Ron Johnson. If they think government run health care is evil why are they accepting it?"

Okay, thanks for clarifying that you are, indeed, equating health care obtained through one's employment to "government run health care."

Until Walker and Ron Johnson start to insist that we change to a system that removes the employer from the health insurance equation (and some people do think this is best) then neither of them have any reason to "lead by example" since neither are doing anything they publicly oppose.

Conflating health insurance obtained through an employer that happens to be "government" to "government health care for all citizens" isn't nearly as clever as you think it is. Acting like it's some sort of slam-dunk is just embarrassing yourself.

Coketown said...

Children marching in support of unions? What is this, the nineteenth century?

Sorry, kiddies. Your little toes were too precious to risk in the looms, so you were banished from the payrolls forever!

Unions: Do what they do here and hire bums to hold your picket signs.

Peter Hoh said...

Blogger seems to be having some sort of trouble right now.

peter hoh said...

Maybe blogger/google was just giving me a hard time. Had some problem logging into gmail just now.

TheGiantPeach said...

I think the appropriate response for the unions is to have a coordinated strike and shut down the state. I know that public unions aren't allowed to do that, but the governor is clearly not playing by the rules, and I don't think the state employees should feel constrained to do so. Their livelihood is at stake.

Beyond that, I see this as a disaster for Wisconsin. Any competent state employee will go to another state where he can earn a living wage. The ones who are left will be the incompetents. And those who do stay will put in a lot less effort in their jobs. After all, they will be getting a lot less. The moral is that you get what you pay for. And by trying to go cheap on labor, Wisconsin is going to find that the quality of state services is going to go downhill very fast.

chickelit said...

Okay, thanks for clarifying that you are, indeed, equating health care obtained through one's employment to "government run health care."

Garage crossed a rubicon of lost integrity when he went totally incognito recently. Persona non gracias to me now, FWIW.
Trooper and I disagree on this BTW.

Seven Machos said...

Garage is a weird one. I find myself finding a lot of common ground with many of the left-leaning people here -- much more so than when Bush was president -- but Garage doesn't appear to want to find common ground.

It's a disease. Many right wingers are afflicted. It's called I-disagree-with-whatever-you-say-and-only-want-to-score-lame-cheap-points syndrome.

Garage is a terminal case. Most people grow out of this in their early 20s. Especially serious cases usually require a few years of law school and/or legal practice. I don't know what to do for Garage. Maybe an asshole transplant.

chickelit said...

Maybe an asshole transplant

Too old school 7M. Artificial sphincters are au currant for preventing unwanted vowel movements: link.

Alex said...

garage is a bitter old jerk.

kent said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
kent said...

It's a disease. Many right wingers are afflicted. It's called I-disagree-with-whatever-you-say-and-only-want-to-score-lame-cheap-points syndrome.

Garage is a terminal case.


This. I have no problem with the few standout lefties hereabouts who -- confronted by hard, unvarnished evidence that they've erred somewhere along the way, in argument -- promptly cowboy up, graciously concede the point, and continue onward from there. But the tedious, melodramatic contrariness gratia contrariness "acting out" into which he metronomically descends, whenever finding himself trumped... [::shakes head::]

Ut said...

You know, I'd laugh out loud if this right here folks wasn't so dangerous.

In Egypt the individuals protesting in the streets are "the people." Fighting for their freedom. Against their oppressive government.

In the United States, on the other hand, the individuals protesting in the streets are the oppressive government - fighting to further enslave the people.

We've got things backwards in the United States, and the hutzpuh of these government workers shows just how fucked up things are.

It shows how far we have to go when these entitled rich fatcats believe they can gain sympathy by showing their faces in public. We need to get to the point where they're embarassed to admit they are the government in polite company.

The government - organized, unionized - protesting in the streets agitating for more. That's what we have her folks.

dont tread 2012 said...

Seeing the trolls such as Garage, Alpha, Ritmo, et al, flailing away with nothing but factless snark, in itself indicates desperation.

Leftists = demanders
Leftists = never happy
Leftists = insatiable babies
Leftists = never having to say thank you or I'm sorry.

They are the remoras, the leeches of modern society.

Leftists - biting the hands that feed them for over 100 years.

Ask a leftist to do something and watch them go nuts. Their is no 'do', only demand, demand, demand.

Jay said...

Oh, and what's your plan too save the rustbelt? High-speed choo-choos?

No!

It is more education spending, and public employee unions of course.

alan markus said...

That last sign, "Impeach Walker Now,Unionbusting Violates Federal Law"

Not so, I hear, when it comes to public sector employment.

James said...

For most of the last two years Wisconsin has had the dubious distinction of having more government employees than manufacturing jobs. That's an untenable situation that continue long-term... the people pulling the wagon are exhausted.

Who would have thought that a Rust Belt state that boasts about its manufacturing prowess would have more government jobs than manufacturing jobs.

tree hugging sister said...

"Malaise Forever!"

I've always liked 'ennui', especially after Gorey used it.

Pogo said...

Wisconsin law requires a balanced State budget.

According to the State’s 2009 audited financial report, Wisconsin is in a precarious financial position because it does not have the funds available to pay more than $14.4 billion of the State’s commitments as they come due. Each taxpayer’s share of this financial burden equals $7,400.

As of June 30, 2009, the State had set aside only 22 cents to pay for each dollar of healthcare benefits promised"
for State employees and teachers retirement and healthcare benefits.

Wisconsin unfunded liability for this? $1.58B.


Not Armageddon, but rickety.

MadisonMan said...

james, I am suspicious of a claim like that, and anyone should be too, without numbers to back it up.

I am assuming that manufacturing is not including agriculture jobs, of which Wisconsin has plenty.

Bushman of the Kohlrabi said...

What huge payments are those?

Google Tom Ament/Milwaukee County Board/Pension Scandal. Some of the money has been recovered due to court cases but the effects of the pension deal will be felt in Milwaukee County for decades to come. It's the reason that Walker was elected and (subsequently) reelected in heavily Democratic Milwaukee County.

Paul Zrimsek said...

I read the sign as "Fix it"-- [illegible] Plan Needed.

MadisonMan said...

Bushman, thanks, but is that not only for Milwaukee County?

Milwaukee said...

Is it usual, with a large, not-house-broken dog, to negotiate before cutting off it's nuts? No. The Unions should be grateful they are being allowed to negotiate salaries. Really, is it Federal law public sector employees get to organize? There's a law which needs changing. Explains why teachers get to negotiate anything. Teachers usually pay a pitifully small amount for health care insurance. My previous school district paid both the employer and employee contribution to the state pension program. The teachers protests will be ineffective because most of them are not nearly as sharp as they think they are. In their classrooms they may get away with "Because I said so!", but not so much in the real world. Teachers have wasted the body of trust they once had with the community at large. Have test scores gone up as salaries have gone up? I don't think so. Teacher unions active squelch competition in the way of charter schools.

Bushman of the Kohlrabi said...

Welcome to "Pay to Play" Walker style.

The Milwaukee Professional Firefighters Association gave the Walker campaign $0 and the Milwauke Police Association donated $1100. Both organizations backed Barrett. Not exactly the conspiracy you were hoping for.

Comrade X said...

looks like going a little hungry would do them some good. and the externalities of their obesity increase the cost of obamacare

kent said...

Not exactly the conspiracy you were hoping for.

"... ummmmmmm... errrrrr... wellllll... Koch Brothers! Bush! SARAH PALIN -- !11!!!"

/leftard

Class factotum said...

WI spends way more on prisons than neighboring states (Let's ignore IL in this comparison).

Good idea, as it is more expensive to house an ex-governor than a regular prisoner.

Fen said...

*snoopy happy dance*

Trooper York said...

"There was one man — I have video but I'm not posting it — who seemed at bit disoriented, who did something that is comically easy to do in a low-key protest. He started speaking, haranguing, like he was the leader. The group of nice, tolerant people did nothing to shoo him away. It was rather touching, even as it underlined the ineffectiveness of the protest."

Oh so that's were Garage is.

AJ Lynch said...

Of all govt workers, the military should have the most generous pension plans.

Pension plans for civilian workers should be no more than 50% as generoous as that of the military plans.

This is how I would fix govt's fiscal pension bombs.

AJ Lynch said...

Yay Fen got quoted by Instapundit!

kent said...

Yay Fen got quoted by Instapundit!

Kudos, Fen!!!!! ;)

Paul Zrimsek said...

They'll probably get a much bigger turnout today, when the government workers don't have to protest on their own time.

Bushman of the Kohlrabi said...

Sorry MadMan. You are correct. I misread one of your earlier comments.

knox said...

In the United States, on the other hand, the individuals protesting in the streets are the oppressive government - fighting to further enslave the people.

Yes. We might just get to a point where it's not republican vs democrat; instead it will be private sector workers vs government and union workers. At some point their demands will start to wear on even the most liberal.

And anyone who hasn't read rhhardin's link, should. It's excellent.

Trooper York said...

At least we know where all the Packers Fans are now that football season is over.

Did I tell you lately that the Green Bay Packers won the Super Bowl?

I know right? You know they had to pay off the refs or something right? That last call was bullshit. Just sayn'

Calypso Facto said...

Bushman: I think you were exactly right about where MadMan was going with his earlier comment "I wonder if the State Govt would step in to fix Walker's mess?" because Milwaukee County's mess has a large pension corruption element.

Unfortunate to the description of it being "Scott Walker's mess" however, is the fact Walker had nothing to do with the pension problem and sued the company that established the plan. Journal Sentinal: "Scott Walker... had nothing to do with the pension scheme, so has nothing to fear from trial testimony."

Clyde said...

Let's not be cruel to the woman(?) with the "bullying is not the answer" sign. She doesn't look like the sharpest knife in the drawer. But please, let's hope she's not in the teacher's union with an incoherent sign like that!

James said...

MadisonMan said:
"james, I am suspicious of a claim like that, and anyone should be too, without numbers to back it up.

I am assuming that manufacturing is not including agriculture jobs, of which Wisconsin has plenty.


Take a look at the December 2010 employment statistics published by the Department of Workforce Development:WI Jobs, Unemployment Numbers

If you go back to 2009 you will see that in most months, government employment exceeded manufacturing employment.

This development was discussed during the last election campaign and even PolitiFact Wisconsin grudgingly concluded that it was true: Wisconsin now has more government jobs than manufacturing jobs

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Good....Now if only California would follow in Wisconsin's footsteps. (Fat chance)

If they did THEN you would see the real side of the Unions as the creeps and thugs that they are really are instead of the nice namby pamby crowd you have in Wisconsin.

You haven't seen pushback until you get a bunch of SEIU purple shirted gang banger types rioting and beating up people.

People right now are becoming more and more anti union and anti government unions. This will just be the icing on the cake in turning public opnion even further against the unions.

Good!!

Fen said...

Twice in two weeks now. LOL.

MadisonMan said...

The vast majority of those Government jobs are local government jobs -- can I assume those are school district employees?

I wonder why the seasonally adjusted values don't -- quite -- show the same thing.

Calypso: It's Walker's mess -- or his successor's now -- because he decided to become the executive. Were the County to go bankrupt (if the state let it), you can't exempt a former executive from blame because they weren't there when the fuse was lit. What was he doing while the lit fuse steadily burned towards the explosion?

If Obama doesn't want to deal with the Bush legacy, why did Obama run for the Presidency? Similarly W with the Clintonian messes. Stop apologizing for do-nothing leaders!

I'll give them just a little leeway, a couple months. If you're elected to an office, though, you better have a solution (and a plan to implement the solution) to the problems that you propelled you to run.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

This is just a move to get rid of Unions. Well, then what?

So?

Perhaps the government could go to a free market method for many of the now unionized government services.

Put the road construction out to bid, WITHOUT Davis-Bacon wage rules, which exists only to protect the unions.. Let the best bidder win. Garbage Service, Snow Plowing, Street Light Maintenance, Bus Service just to begin with.
Contract out the clerical staff. Let accounting firms bid on the controllers and tax collecting.

There are many many functions of government that could be done by private companies that are more capable of doing the job and will do it with ecoomic efficiencies.

Private business are in it to make money by running their business economically. Plus, in order to keep business or retain their contracts they have to do a good job. Government workers who are unionized don't have to do either of those things.....and it shows.

There are also many many departments within the government that are redundant and just plain useless.

Sub contract out the government and let the free market work.

Trooper York said...

What Dust Bunny said.

Oh and stop subsidizing sports teams and the staduims they play in.

Youse guys must waste a lot of money on that forzen tundra joint. Let them play in the park like real men.

Calypso Facto said...

I'll give them just a little leeway, a couple months. If you're elected to an office, though, you better have a solution (and a plan to implement the solution) to the problems that you propelled you to run.

I'm with you there, MM. Which is why I think it's silly of Walker's opposition on this issue to say, "Wait! We need more time to discuss this!" Walker made some big pledges running for Governor and knows he needs to get moving on them.

Phil 3:14 said...

Can someone please show me consistent data that correlates dollars spent with improved educational outcomes? In the same vein, can anyone show me data that correlates teacher pay with educational outcomes?

If the answers are "no" then I will fall back to the core concern: the budget deficit.

AZ faces similar issues. I have several teacher friends. I sympathize with their concerns about job loss and pension changes but when you're a huge chunk of the state's budget and when your personnel policies reward longevity (to a point) and not skill and outcomes my sympathy wanes.

Wisconsin will now experience what AZ has had for some time: a Republican administration and legislature not reflexively sympathetic to teachers, unions and

the kids!!, what about the kids!!!

(PS When I see kids at protests like this I wonder what's the promised reward? McDonald's, ice cream?...)

Dust Bunny Queen said...

(PS When I see kids at protests like this I wonder what's the promised reward? McDonald's, ice cream?...)

When I see kids at protests like this I want to report their parents for child abuse.

bluecheddar said...

I see you made fun of these people for not having any speakers.

How many public events have you organized?.....**crickets**

I believe having an amplifying device would push them into needing a permit, which they probably could not score in time given the release of Walker's bomb on Friday.

As for kids being there, I attended a Tea Party rally at the same spot and saw plenty of kids. Not really sure where that critique comes from.

I also saw plenty of slick posters, messy handmade signs, fat slobs, and so on at the Tea Party gathering. I'll admit I was impressed with the array of huge "don't tread on me" flags. How fitting they've adopted a snake as their mascot.

Come on back on Tuesday. Should be a bigger crowd. But crowds will be commonplace - http://bluecheddar.wordpress.com/

kent said...

Shorter bluecheddar: WAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHH -- !!!

MadisonMan said...

PS When I see kids at protests like this I wonder what's the promised reward? McDonald's, ice cream?

The McDonalds on the square closed a long time ago, so that's not it.

Triangle Man said...

The McDonalds on the square closed a long time ago, so that's not it.

A balloon from Capitol Kids?

Pogo said...

All the unions have to do is accept lower wages or benefits.

Instead they want to tax Wisconsin citizens to maintain a level of compensation both unsustainable and -for many gov't. jobs- unavailable in the private sector

The increasingly common view is that they are picketing to continue to get wages and benefits that no one else does.

But all bleeding stops, one way or another.

Calypso Facto said...

BC said: Come on back on Tuesday. Should be a bigger crowd. But crowds will be commonplace

Maybe there will be some private industry, tax-paying, counter-protesters. Oh wait, they'll be busy WORKING during the work day. The bigger the union crowd, the more they'll prove their detractors' point.

And c'mon, the kids (even without a bargaining unit!) are smart enough to demand Culver's as a condition of their employment, right MM?

E.M. Davis said...

So the gummint is an employer? oh my.

Yes, but it can't be the only employer.

Fen said...

Libtard: How fitting they've adopted a snake as their mascot.

Really? Guess who else adopted it...

Jim said...

Lets be clear what this rally was.

It was an impromptu flash mob protest. People saw it on Twitter and Facebook. I was surprised to see that many attending.

Thousands will be protesting Tuesday/Wed.

Since Scott Walker doesn't give a crap what state workers think or about collective bargaining (which is the bigger issue for most state workers) I think this is basically the beginning of the recall efforts, or the kickoff to the 2012 campaign.

Walker may win this round, but state workers and their families will remember. Trust me.

Meanwhile all the private sector workers will continue to see their wages and benefits slashed as the pro business crowd is just getting started.

Way to go voters of WI.

Bushman of the Kohlrabi said...

Meanwhile all the private sector workers will continue to see their wages and benefits slashed as the pro business crowd is just getting started.

Sure, because we have seen what a boon to wages and benefits the anti-business crowd has been for private sector workers.

This never ceases to amaze me. Not only are most lefties pro government but they also oppose the private sector. They don't seem to understand that one pays for the other. Sorry to tell you but you can't run government on unicorn farts. Well, maybe Obama can. But the states can't.

Seven Machos said...

all the private sector workers will continue to see their wages and benefits slashed as the pro business crowd is just getting started

Yet another moron who sincerely believes that money grows on trees. Where is the money for funding the government coming from, dude?

Trooper York said...

"Walker may win this round, but state workers and their families will remember. Trust me."

Who cares if they remember. The taxpayers outnumber them. At least so far but if they follow what you douchenozzles want everyone will be a government worker and there will be no private business.

That is what is happening to NYS except for the people working in the underground economy.

Paul Zrimsek said...

All those anti-Walker protestors who think they're kicking off the 2012 campaign are going to be fit to be tied when they find out he's not up for re-election until 2014.

Michael said...

Tunisia, Egypt, Iran, Wisconsin!! Solidarity. Crowds. Twitter. Facebook. Government Union Employees.

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHA

Milwaukee said...

When Enron collapsed, thousands of people lost their pensions with the company. One fellow, however, didn't. He had been an engineer at Exon, and there he, explained, if he needed something he had to ask repeatedly. Even if it was very important, it had to be repeatedly requested. At Enron, he got everything he asked for the first time he asked. He figured something was rotten, and got his money out of Enron as quickly as he could. When Enron collapsed, many of his assets had been transferred to safety. So, we have had an excellent post war boom. The economy has had some real excellent growth period. Now there is a time for retrenchment. Do public employees really think they are going to escape? School staffs only seem to grow, never shrink. We went a long time without public sector unions.

Reminds me of a story from 30 years ago. A friend of mine had been working at the Sears store in a town with an organized factory, where people were well paid. The customer was wanting a refund on something that wasn't working. The customer said "I know what you're thinking, that I make the big bucks, but by the time you make the house payment, two car payments, the motorcycle payment, the RV payment, the snowmobile payment and then groceries, there isn't a lot of money left." Sort of inspires sympathy.

Walker made this point: most teachers could pay twice what they are paying now on their health insurance, and still be paying less than most in the private sector. Are we abusing teachers to contribute more to their own health insurance?

Revenant said...

This is just a move to get rid of Unions.

Can you give me one reason why we *shouldn't* want to get rid of public sector unions?

With private-sector unions, you have the business owners and the unions trying to squeeze every penny they can from one another. That's fine; when I buy something from a company I don't care if the money ultimately winds up in the pocket of a CEO or a factory worker.

The government, on the other hand, is not a for-profit operation. We pay taxes that, in theory, are used to pay for essential services. The purpose of public-sector unions is to fight tooth and nail to make those services more expensive for the public, so that their members can pocket more money.

Private-sector unions arguably serve a good purpose. Public-sector unions are parasites on the tax-paying public.

kent said...

What... no staggering, Egypt-style mass uprising against the oppressive fiscal rule of those selfish, grasping Wisconsin taxpayers today, either? Really...?

[::struggles to keep face straight jut a few moments longer, out of simple courtesy::]

Paul said...

I happened to see this one in person. I was walking over to Candinas Chocolates to buy some truffles for my Valentine, when I heard some angry-sounding chants coming from the northwest steps of the Capitol. I glanced over, saw the obligatory signs of outrage, and went to buy my chocolates. Upon my return, some ten minutes later, imagine my surprise when I discovered that the entire crowd (such as it was) had disappeared. If these kiddies think they can scare Scott Walker off his talking points, they'd better get a little more staying power. Not even 20 minutes! That'll never fly.

armed and liberal said...

30,000 plus Thursday the 17th I'm going with a few socialist friends Friday see you there!!