Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Puppet Politics

By Randell A. Monaco
February 16, 2011

Is anyone arguing that Gov Scott Walker is not completely over the top? His conduct seems too deliberate and obviously tied to a self-serving desire to climb the political ladder on to the national stage. Wisconsin does not have a crisis and is not broke. In fact, today in a New York Times article there was a reported surplus of $138 million.

Clearly, the recently sworn Wisconsin governor is doing the bidding of the larger national conservative political agenda which is strategically attempting to disempower public employee unions and collective bargaining. That is not to say or ignore the real concern about the pension bubble which exists and will soon occupy center stage in America. However, Wisconsin should be seen for what it is - a test case which is likely to set a national tone and put a crack in the armor of almost a century of collective bargaining.

Calling out the National Guard is an abuse of office, an unnecessary reckless use of public money and a probable political headline grab strategy designed to create national attention rather than be seen as just another labor dispute. I suggest that all of America watch and see this for what it is and continue to track Gov Scott Walker. He is a puppet in a larger scheme or ploy. He has just taken office. He addressed none of his intentions during his campaign and fabricated a crisis while failing to meet union leaders and explore options. I have no reservation about concluding that his ethics are worse than mere dishonesty. Self promotion is once again the order of the day for conservative politics. The taint of this strategy falls onto the entire political cast of characters as it should and demonstrates America’s pressing need to explore election reform now.

Walker is unlikely to be re-elected and they know it. We will likely see him at the front of a national political effort post-office in state politics. My question at this moment is whether he is already a member of The Federalist Society and what relationship exists that would connect him with the Koch brothers and their politics?


  1. Our friends living in Wisconsin report: "The demonstration in Madison is impressive. The interesting thing is that our local Fox news station has hardly covered the event. Curious. Fortunately, the other stations have begun covering it. I've received my information about it mostly on the Progressive radio station out of Chicago. It confuses me how many people in my neighborhood AGREE with the governor. They are spoon fed lies by Fox News and actually believe it is in their best interests to bust the unions. These are blue collar people, and they just don't understand. It's very frustrating, and I end up not talking about political issues with them...or social issues for that matter."

  2. February 17 ~ 2:55 PM Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), chairman of the House Budget Committee, compared on Thursday the large, ongoing protests in his home state to those that took place in Egypt earlier this month, claiming that they're "like Cairo has moved to Madison these days."

    HuffPost's Amanda Terkel reported on the controversial budget proposal by Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R), which has triggered massive protests at the state's capitol building.

    The proposal has caused many-thousands of demonstrators to flock to Wisconsin's state house and inside the halls of its capitol building in protest of what they characterize as an assault on state workers.

    Ryan, however, claimed that the budget proposal is a necessary austerity measure and likened the clamor to a much bigger, more violent, one in Egypt.

  3. Bloomberg reports: Protestsw Spread From Wisconsin To Ohion Demonstraions against bills to restrict public employees’ collective-bargaining rights spilled from Wisconsin into Ohio in what union leaders said was becoming a national fight.

    In Madison, Wisconsin, crowds police estimated at 25,000 engulfed the Capitol and its lawns during a third day of protests as Democratic state senators boycotted the legislative session. In Columbus, Ohio, about 3,800 state workers, teachers and other public employees came to the statehouse.

  4. Former Rep. David Obey (D-WI), a 41-year veteran of the House, the former chairman of the Appropriations Committee and an icon in Wisconsin politics, assailed Gov. Scott Walker for engaging in "political thuggery" and accused him of channeling toppled Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak before his fall.

    "All I know is that last week, when people were asking where Mubarak was -- whether he had gone to Sharm el-Sheikh or Paris -- I was saying he was ensconced in the governor's mansion in Madison," Obey said in a telephone interview with TPM.

  5. The Washington Post's By Greg Sargent quotes Wisconsin State Senator Chris Larson as saying:

    "We're going to be staying away until we hear that they are taking the right to organize seriously," Larson continued, referring to Republicans. "They're going after 50 years of history in one week. Until they take that off the table, it's a non-starter."

  6. Democratic State Senators who protested the budget repair bill by leaving the state have been found. The lawmakers are in the Best Western Clock Tower in Rockford Illinois.

    Law enforcement officials have been looking for at least one Democratic senator to bring in for a quorum required for a fiscal measure, but Democratic Senator Jon Erpenbach confirmed to Newsradio 620 WTMJ that he and all of his Democratic colleagues boarded a bus and left the state.

  7. House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) is watching events in Wisconsin, and he's come to this conclusion: the thousands of union workers packing the Capitol are wrong and the governor is right.

    In a statement to reporters this afternoon, Bohener said that Walker's plan to eliminate the collective bargaining rights of Wisconsin teacher, nurses and other workers is just the kind of thing Boehner's majority is trying to accomplish in Washington.

  8. The Milwaukee Wisconsin Journal Sentinal reports:

    The [Wisconsin] constitution doesn't provide a lot of details, but it does say lawmakers "may compel the attendance of absent members in such manner and under such penalties as each house may provide."

  9. The average Wisconsin state employee gets $24,500 a year. That’s not a very big pension. The state pension plan, 15% of the money going into it each year is being paid out to Wall Street to manage the money. That’s a really huge high percentage to pay out to Wall Street to manage the money."

  10. Gov Walker seems mighty quick to pull the trigger on the use of force to get his way. First he put National Guard on alert and is now sending law enforcement after elected government to because they lack a quorum to shove law down the throats of state law makers.

    So much for decorum. Mediphoric claims that Walker is channeling Mubarak

  11. During the 2010 election cycle, Walker received $43,000 from the Koch Industries PAC, his second-largest contribution. The PAC also gave significantly to the Republican Governors Association, which in turn helped out Walker considerably in his race. Koch also contributed $6,500 to support 16 Republican legislative candidates in the state.

    The Koch-funded group Americans for Prosperity has also been standing with Walker throughout his budget battles, busing in Tea Party activists and launching the site, Stand With Walker. After the election, Walker and other Republican governors received guidance from the American Legislative Exchange Council, a group that is also funded by Koch dollars and has pushed anti-union measures.