July 8, 2015

"A Political Lifer, Scott Walker Has Long Been His Own Strategist."

A NYT article by Jonathan Martin. Excerpt:
Mr. Walker’s hands-on approach to his political operation in Wisconsin bordered on the obsessive.... Mr. Walker’s strategic talents can be an asset...  It was Mr. Walker who came up with the best-of-both-worlds formulation he has recently woven into his stump speech — that his hard-charging Senate opponents are “fighters,” and his rival governors who have won difficult elections are “winners,” but he is the rare breed who has done both.

Asked about Mr. Walker’s hands-on approach, a Republican close to him who requested anonymity to discuss the candidate’s political style said: “It’s clear that he’s engaged. He knows what he wants, knows what he believes in, and is not being told what to say.”...

His penchant for veering off into the arcana and mechanics of politics can divert him from his message, unintentionally raise expectations and, more significantly, reinforce an impression his opponents are hoping will take hold: that he is a political lifer with a shallow grasp of policy who lacks the gravitas the presidency demands.

To think like an operative, after all, is to find a way to appeal to the political marketplace at a given moment, to devise a way to win....


MadisonMan said...

a Republican close to him who requested anonymity to discuss the candidate’s political style said

Why do journalists accept these requests?

It's like the journalist has a preconceived notion in their head, and then shops around for an anonymous quote to substantiate it. Maybe that's easier than writing about facts.

Larry J said...

MadisonMan said...
a Republican close to him who requested anonymity to discuss the candidate’s political style said

Why do journalists accept these requests?

Because odds are their sources don't exist. So-called journalists make up stuff all of the time. If you've ever witnessed an event or have detailed knowledge of a subject, it's laughable how wrong it's usually reported.

But your point about having preconceived notions is accurate. It's called the narrative. The narrative is the preconceived storyline - virtually always from a left perspective - that they use to determine what is news and how to frame the stories. One of the most infamous examples of the narrative was the Duke Lacrosse (non) Rape Story from several years ago. The narrative was about how rich, spoiled, white jocks abused and raped a poor black woman. When the story was proven false, one reporter famously stated, "The narrative was right but the facts were wrong." That's a longer way of saying, "Fake but accurate."

Bob Ellison said...

What Larry J said. It's like the "I know a guy" scene in Ocean's Eleven.

Oso Negro said...

Good God! What more evidence is needed of Walker's anointment by the Nation's Elite than fellation by the New York Times?

Skeptical Voter said...

Well on fellation, let's just say that the NYT approached with a tease--and backed off.

The narrative they want ot implant is that Walker is a lightweight with no grasp of substantive policy. Okay, I look at another lightweight with no grasp of worthwhile substantive policy (our Dear Leader, aka "The Won") and say, "So?"

What's your point NYT?

garage mahal said...

Noted hands-on micro manager knows absolutely nothing that has happened in his administration. [that received criticism].

traditionalguy said...

I get it now. Scott Walker is so extremely good at politics that he would be bad at politics.

If that is how your opponents are left to criticize you, then he doesn't have much to worry about.

Birkel said...

This just in: "garage mahal" is a bit obsessed with Scott Walker, by some definitions of bit.

mccullough said...

Worse than the anonymous source is the unattributed "impression of his opponents." Also, gravitas is such a bullshit beltway term.

If the political media cares about "gravitas" it would make Joe Biden look worse than Dan Quayle. Biden is an ignorant blowhard and is too stupid to even keep his mouth shut.

Curious George said...

Evacuation of the Capitol because of a bomb threat!. OMG I hope the Solidarity Singers are all okay and accounted for.

Curious George said...

"garage mahal said...
Noted hands-on micro manager knows absolutely nothing that has happened in his administration. [that received criticism]."

Too dumb to understand that being a hands-on strategist is not the same as being a hands-on manager. Or too dishonest to care.

Of course I'm waiting for garage to make his first critique of Obama, who not only doesn't ever know anything, but learns of scandal like the rest of us, through the news.

garage mahal said...

understand that being a hands-on strategist is not the same as being a hands-on manager.

Yea we've seen what a great manager he is. Tested and Ready!

Have you ripped your I Stand With Walker bumper sticker yet? Seems to be fewer and fewer TGFSW idiots these days.

Bob Ellison said...

A bit is an underestimate. Try a byte.

Michael K said...

""impression of his opponents."

Also know as "critics say..."

MikeR said...

Not on topic, but I'd be interested in hearing from Walker fans (like our hostess) how they think Walker has done as a governor. I know, he broke the unions and that's really good from the point of view of us conservatives. But what about all the criticisms of how his state is actually doing? Very slow recovery and job growth, stuff like that. Just read an article in WaPo and that's all every single comment had to say: idiot conservatives to support a candidate who has done a terrible job in everything that matters in his state. Response?

Michael K said...

What do you expect from WaPo readers who are 98% government employees ?

I don't live in Wisconsin but what I have heard sounds about as good as can be done in Obama's America.

m stone said...

Fiscally, Wisconsin comes in at 28 of the 50 states. The big blue states suffer the worst by far, but that would destroy the narrative.

I'll dig up the link.

m stone said...

Link to post above:


Ranking of states by fiscal condition FY 2013

garage mahal said...

Obama's America didn't affect our neighbor Minnesota for some reason.

Michael K said...

Het, garage. I checked the economies of Wisconsin and Minnesota. Minnesota has a number of large corporations headquartered there. This was obviously the work of crazy Mary Dayton, so garage seems to have a point. Not much of a point, of course but United Healthcare will do well with Obamacare forcing all the providers into tight networks run by corporations.

Forbes ranks Wisconsin as best potential in the midwest but garage knows better, That why he has made millions in the stock market. Right garage ?

Wisconsin outranks all other Midwest states when it comes to projected economic growth over the next five years, according to Forbes magazine’s new business climate rankings.

Wisconsin ranks 18th in the nation for projected growth in the magazine’s “Best States for Business” rankings released last week. Minnesota ranks 23rd, Indiana ranks 31st, Michigan is 34th, Ohio is 36th, Illinois is 40th, and Iowa is 42nd.

Aw. What do they know ?

Sprezzatura said...

The m stone link is a bit old. It'd be interesting to see what's happened in the States since then. Presumably Kansas has slipped to join Walker's bottom half gang. Btw, is spot twenty-eighth place, out of fifty, supposed to be a good thing? If so, is Christie at 49 a good thing?

Illinois was already at the bottom. But, they could end up going bankrupt, if so they should probably be awarded spot 60, 50 doesn't seem low enough.

Btw, red states also tend to dominate the list of federal tit suckers:


It's awesome that Alaska is a tit sucker and it has the best fiscal situation. Why can't they pull themselves up by their boot straps?

Sprezzatura said...

Michael K's link is AWESOME!!!!

WI is actually rank as 32 out of fifty. They were eighteenth in one fraction of the things that were judged.

Cool stuff.

Sprezzatura said...

Btw, I looked so garage didn't need to.

Minnesota is ranked 9, Wisconsin is 32.


Birkel said...

That you believe red states are more likely to be receivers of federal aid is cute. I enjoy that you have avoided all the explanations for why those assertions are wrong. God bless your continued efforts at ignorance.

Sprezzatura said...

If cons really cared about the links they're posting Rick would be the pick. Walker is at 28 and 32 out of fifty.

Any Rick lovers?

Sprezzatura said...


I gave you a Wall Street Journal link. I'm only the messenger. Take it up w/ Rupert if you have a problem.

Sprezzatura said...

Have any of you cons asked why the nyt and wapo are doing puff pieces about Walker?

Garage should get in line too: Walker is the best, cons need to pick him. Go Walker!!!@1211!!!!1211211!!!!31235234!1

Sprezzatura said...

Btw, the category that Walker was bragging about being 18th had California at the 3rd spot.


Michael K said...

"Why can't they pull themselves up by their boot straps?"

Why don't you go up there and tell them how ?

I'll bet you are great source or economic advice.

Unknown said...

Yeah, the left wants to bad mouth Wisconsin economic performance. Here’s some current stats:

4.4 percent unemployment - second strongest in the Midwest (they like to say our job growth is slow -- its very difficult to have rapid employment growth when you are at FULL EMPLOYMENT)

Labor participation rate FIVE POINT SEVEN percent ABOVE the national average.


Wisconsin’s last budget ended with a huge surplus AFTER a 500 Million dollar TAX Cut

The Manpower Employment Outlook Survey gave Wisconsin the 3rd best outlook in the US for the second

I haven’t had time to research it, but I have seen a comment that Minnesota’s unemployment rate is boosted by North Dakota’s huge oil boom

Skeptical Voter said...

You know as a Californian for some 60 years now, I've watched this state fall apart. Corporations and jobs are leaving California like there's no tomorrow (and for many of them, if they stayed in California there would be no tomorrow). We spend as much if not more per child on education as most other states--and school performance here sucks sour apples. Roads are falling apart; the sidewalk repair in Los Angeles is on a 400 year cycle--that's right, at the present pace of repairs, it would take 400 years to fix the broken sidewalks that we know about today.

Tell me about the wonders of the blue state model, and I'll tell you to go pee up a rope. The coastal fringe is doing fairly well--but the interior of the state and the "Inland Empire" is a disaster area. This morning's Los Angeles Times reported that Hispanics are now the largest single demographic group in the State of California. No mention of what percentage of those Hispanics were here legally or were born here.

I used to joke to my foreign friends about the USA being the great PX in the sky.
They'd come here and buy from abundant goods in the stores at low prices.

These days the State of California has become the Great Social Welfare Cantina in El Norte. Come on down los amgios--do we have a deal for you!

MikeR said...

Unknown, that unemployment stat is really interesting: indeed, a lot of the complaints I saw were about job growth stats. Sounds like it was cherry-picking.

Sprezzatura said...


That's the May number. Madison had a 3.1% rate. The libs are pulling up WI's average.

If Walker was a polite WIer, wouldn't he say thanks to the libs in Madison?

Sprezzatura said...

That was April, not May

Unknown said...

Yes. You really have to dig to find that statistic. They like to compare Wisconsin to Minnesota, but what does it look like when you compare Wisconsin to Illinois (still at 6.0 % unemployed) or Michigan (still at 5.5%)?

I was in an online discussion and really reviewed a lot of sources. Wisconsin began to have sluggish growth in 2000 under Doyle. We didn’t lose quite as much during the bad recession and Walker has made up for his predecessor’s losses and then some. I’ve read some analysis that when looking at the labor force participation rate, and the number of open jobs that can’t be filled we have hit a constraint of employable citizens.

We can look forward to some bump in our employable population when Illinois collapses and we welcome only the best of the Illinois workforce.

garage mahal said...

Wisconsin is dad last in business startup activity.


Wisconsin leads the country in decline of its middle class.

Thank God For Scott Walker

Unknown said...

----That's the May number. Madison had a 3.1% rate. The libs are pulling up WI's average.--

The May number was 4.6 as more encouraged workers started looking. Its still in the range of full employment

-----Madison had a 3.1% rate. The libs are pulling up WI's average.

There’s that attractive tendency of a rabid liberal to divide in all things.

Is anyone surprised that a GOVERNMENT town dominated by a UNIVERSITY would have low unemployment. Washington DC’s unemployment is extremely low too with all the dollars to fertilize employment. If Rick Perry in Texas hadn’t shown us how to create jobs, Obama would have massive unemployment headaches.


Sprezzatura said...

As I noted before, why aren't you cons supporting Rick?

According to the BLS:

April WI=4.4%, Madison=3.1%
May WI=4.6%, Madison=3.6%

As goes Madison, so goes WI.

Unknown said...

Total private-sector wages increased by 5 percent in the fourth quarter of 2014 over the same quarter in
2013, including a 10.7 percent jump in construction wages during this time


---Wisconsin leads the country in decline of its middle class.

The decline of the middle class began under Doyle .....State job creation has grown at this slow pace since at least 2000, a September 2013 Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance study showed.The study tracked the state economy from 2000 to 2012 and found that job creation has declined as has population growth. It’s hard to create jobs if there aren’t workers to fill them.


Unknown said...

----As goes Madison, so goes WI.

Yay Madison, doing good with our money!!!1!

Alex said...

So what exactly is Scott Walker supposed to magically do to create more high paying middle class jobs? Remember the way things are going economically it's all about elimination of jobs.

hombre said...

garage: "Obama's America didn't affect our neighbor Minnesota for some reason."

Really? We'll see how they do with 100,000 Somalian immigrants.

Mark said...

Alex, perhaps Walker should have thought about that before basing 2010 election promises on creating those jobs.

It is not our fault he claimed it, why should he be let off the hook for making claims he knew were lies?

Rusty said...

All of you morons who think Walker is such a shit governer, look to the state to your immediate south. What you see is the result of uninterupped democrat and rhino misgovernment for the last 50 years. We hope our new conservative governer will hold Springfield hostage and get a handle on our debt(118 BILLION). Meanwhile. Chicago, with already some of the highest property taxes in the midwest, wants to raise property taxes on home owners and businesses 30-40%.
From down here Wisconsin looks pretty good.

Sharc said...

Very observant, Althouse. An original and accurate take.

MikeR said...

IMHO, "Unknown" has done a very effective job of rebutting the liberal claims that Walker's state has done badly under him. The claims seem to be cherry-picking and/or ignoring reasons for things. Do the liberals making the claims even know that, or are they just repeating talking-points that some propagandist thought up?

Mark said...

It's almost like unknown is a paid staffer.

Curious George said...

"MikeR said...
IMHO, "Unknown" has done a very effective job of rebutting the liberal claims that Walker's state has done badly under him. The claims seem to be cherry-picking and/or ignoring reasons for things. Do the liberals making the claims even know that, or are they just repeating talking-points that some propagandist thought up?"

Both. A good example is this comparison of Madison v WI employment numbers by this moron PB&J. garage does this a lot too. He think Madison should secede from Wisconsin because they don't need us. How detached from reality is that? Madison's economy is propped up with state and university employees. How many employees would the State of Madison have? The place would soon become nothing more than a place to stop for gas on the way to someplace else.

trumpetdaddy said...

It never enters the mind of liberals that government jobs are inherently parasitic to the overall economy. They may be necessary jobs but they are jobs that, by definition, are not productive economically in any direct way, and only productive indirectly to a very small extent.

Even the vaunted university "research" jobs are merely a tax-advantaged way for industry to fund R&D that they would otherwise do in-house, or not at all were the tax advantages not available. IOW, it's taxpayer subsidization of private sector activity (some of which wouldn't occur at all without the subsidy), which is inherently parasitic.

So, any time a liberal points to the employment rate in a "company town" like Madison, where the "company" is the government, that liberal is being intentionally obtuse. That employment rate is a direct function of money being sucked out of productive sectors of the economy to fund the government jobs.

Again, that doesn't mean that many of those jobs aren't in fact necessary. It only means that they aren't productive of economic activity.

As an aside, and in anticipation of a common disingenuous liberal response, no, the fact that government workers also pay taxes isn't economically productive. If your salary and benefits are 100% from tax dollars, the fact that you have to kick back some % of that to the source from which it came does not make you a "net payer" to the tax base. It just means that you are less of a drag on the bottom line. You're still getting 100% of your income from taxes.

Unknown said...

----It's almost like unknown is a paid staffer.

Just a guy who is sick of liberals lying constantly and has 'BING' to rebut them.