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Ear to the Ground

Wisconsin Republicans Win Recall Battle, 4-2

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Posted on Aug 9, 2011
WisPolitics.com (CC-BY-SA)

This supporter of Fred Clark would not have been happy Tuesday night, when the vote count showed that the Democratic challenger had lost his bid for the state Senate.

Democrats won only two of six state Senate seats in Wisconsin on Tuesday, leaving Republicans with control of the Senate, the Assembly and the governor’s office. Put another way, the Dems managed to unseat two Republicans and reduce the GOP majority in the Senate to the smallest possible margin.

It’s not over for the Democrats, who risk two of their own seats next week.  —PZS

Milwaukee-Wisconsin Journal-Sentinel:

Republicans may be able to gain back some of the losses next week, when two Democrats face recall elections.

Democrats had hoped to block the Republican agenda by taking control of the Senate in the recall elections, but the GOP should be able to continue to advance its agenda.

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Leefeller's avatar

By Leefeller, August 17, 2011 at 3:09 pm Link to this comment

A comment on my comment, I guess I should use quotations?

“By Leefeller, August 16 at 3:22 pm Link to this comment”

“You know I find liberalism as anything else,...take for instance some other isms,... like Athisim, gayism, or womenism, you find most of the self proclaimed experts on these subject proclaim with absolutist certainty to know everything about them!”

My inference was for the absolutists out there in fantastically land,... people like OM and Russ Limbaugh and other closed minded minions, you know those producers of factoids,  who proclaim to know all about what liberalism means and is this from these self proclaimed, ordained and circumcised experts. 

I just threw out some other ‘isms’ as examples; Womenism, it seems Muslims are the experts in this field along with Mormons and evangelicals.  Gayism, the anti hunky Gebebeiz folks are the experts on this one,  but you would believe it is the Evangelical Christians running for office who were experts on gayness.  As for Athisim, I find the barking dogmas of religion love to tell Atheists what Atheism is all about, then there is Islam who calls Atheists harryticks or is it Zinfandels?

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Shenonymous's avatar

By Shenonymous, August 16, 2011 at 5:17 pm Link to this comment

I don’t use Truthdig as a yardstick for liberal views nor as a body
count.  I think I might be the only one!  I don’t hear anyone else
brag about being one as much as I do.  But nobody else rides six
high horses either. 

After 4:00pm all of the MSNBC news shows are run by self-avowed
liberals, so at least there are five or six more besides me.  LOL then
Cenk Uygur was sent to fanatical liberal/progressive land elsewhere,
sob sob.  I heard he was going to join Keith’s channel.  Maybe even
channel Keith while he is at it. 

But then the New York Times and CBS News goes and spoils it for me by
doing a recent survey and found that between 18% and 27% of American
adults identify as liberal.  The Census Bureau estimates number of
adults, in the US as nationally, at 217.8 million people age 18 and over. 
Lesseee, that must be about 39, 204,000 liberals at 18% or 58,806,000 if
27% is used.  That’s alotta people.  Not too shabby, and here I thought I
wazalone. 

Liberalism is also the dominant political ideology in academia, with 72%
of full-time faculty identifying as liberal.  And in business departments,
liberals outnumbered conservatives 49% to 39%.  So okay, I have to move
over to make room for my fellow colleagues.  But I already knew that
one.

And I haven’t even touched on the Progressive liberals.  Well maybe
tomorrow.

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Anarcissie's avatar

By Anarcissie, August 16, 2011 at 4:58 pm Link to this comment

Classic liberalism is actually pretty clear, considering it’s a political theory.

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Leefeller's avatar

By Leefeller, August 16, 2011 at 3:22 pm Link to this comment

You know I find liberalism as anything else,...take for instance some other isms,... like Athisim, gayism, or womenism, you find most of the self proclaimed experts on these subject proclaim with absolutist certainty to know everything about them!

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Anarcissie's avatar

By Anarcissie, August 16, 2011 at 12:59 pm Link to this comment

I don’t think liberalism (of the classical sort) is popular any more.  Just speaking of the near Left, that is, the proggies, don’t you notice how often a proposal for important political change is couched in the terms of electing a particular president?  (Nader for example)  That’s a monarchical attitude: the president is perceived as not only administrator but legislator—and, probably, pope.  In fact a president without a broad political organization would be powerless, not that one could ever be elected.  But in a monarchy you don’t worry about legislatures or other offices.  It’s like having a fairy godmother.

And that’s the supposed Left.  On the Right we have, generally, militarists, theocrats, plutocrats and kleptocrats.

Both sides and the center join in doing their best to eviscerate the Constitution, especially the Bill of Rights.

Liberalism still gets a lot of lip service, although none dare speak its name.  But that’s about it.

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Shenonymous's avatar

By Shenonymous, August 16, 2011 at 12:19 pm Link to this comment

It is logical that oligarchs and monarchs, and theocrats would
find liberalism anathema.  After all liberalism is all about the
welfare of the common people.  However, when you get in the
trenches, the common people identify with liberals, not the elites.
That is where liberalism is popular. Then there is the fact that
there are more of the commoners than there are the elitist few,
religious and secular.  That means much more than it did even as
recent as the 20th century. 

As I watch the current crop of oligarchs and monarchs and theocrats
mainly in the Middle East but elsewhere as well being rebelled against,
it is not a stretch to foresee a more near than far future where those
organizations of governance will be disappearing and more democratic
forms will replace them.  Probably social democracies, and regardless of
where the money resides, the common people throughout history have
ousted corrupt leaders.

While it looks like religious fanatics are a large part of current world
society, including America, they are a waning group in the throes of
nonexistence, or at most little existence.  It is all generational, and the
free flow of the instantaneous electronic information age will shuffle
along their demise.

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Anarcissie's avatar

By Anarcissie, August 16, 2011 at 10:59 am Link to this comment

There have been various proposals, even agreements, to limit or eliminate the power of the big cheeses, liberalism being one of them.  Not very popular in these times, when we oscillate between monarchism and theocracy.

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Leefeller's avatar

By Leefeller, August 16, 2011 at 7:50 am Link to this comment

Since the dawn of man when he was riding dinosaurs, (3000 years ago) there has always been the opportunists.  From what I gather, the Chief or the Shamans, the king, ect, ect., have always used their powers to make their lives a bit more plushy by making up stuff.  This could be innovative things like having first choice of women,(since most have been men)  there is the need of a bigger tent for all that thinking and depending on where they where a few extra buffalo skins. So the Chief and Shaman offered out their tidbits of wisdom or predictions from the gods.

History is a long list of opportunists, but in many more words than I can produce.

The probosces of reality has no starting point,... there have always been opportunists who utilize innovative slyness and a bit of snake oil to dupe the rest of the people. Nothing has changed or maybe some people have just become more aware.

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Anarcissie's avatar

By Anarcissie, August 16, 2011 at 7:00 am Link to this comment

Lew Ciefer, August 15 at 2:44 pm:

‘Anarcissie, August 15 at 7:45 am:
“If people have the rights of expression, association, assembly and contract, and the right to possess and hold their own property, including their labor, then surely they have the right to make exclusive contracts and form exclusive associations, for example closed shops, regardless of whether the employer is a private business or a government.”

That’s your position but there are opposing views. You have the right to form associations, etc. but you don’t have the right to exclude others free access to goods and services. And you don’t have a right to steal the labor of others to make them finance your little associations, etc; that’s slavery. Then there is the issue of the morality of passing on the cost of government—of which public unions are a part—to future unborn generations who have no voice in the matter.’

No doubt there are opposing views, but mine are logical.  If you accept as premises the natural or God-given rights as proposed by Locke, Jefferson, Madison and so on, and you practice logic, then you come up with my results.  Many people do not want to practice logic, however.  They are not interested in truth but in power.  As Hobbes pointed out, if the facts of geometry offended the interests of powerful men, they would have the books of geometry burned.

One must decide where one stands.


‘Rights are arbitrary concepts and each group interprets rights differently. Usually in a way that grants them more privilege and passes the consequences on to others. Humans are greedy and self-absorbed little. . .’

Let me know if we’re leaving the realm of the classical-liberal rights, the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and all that, and what basic principles you’re now reasoning from.  Based on some things said before, I was assuming the liberal rights were more or less the common ground, at least for the sake of the argument.


‘Oh Anarcissie ... theoretically ... The government is the people. . . . ‘

If the government is identical with the people, then you don’t have a government.  There is no way of distinguishing the governors from the governed, of saying this is government and that isn’t.  So nothing called a ‘government’ can be pointed out.

But obviously there is a government, and a pretty weighty one at that.

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Leefeller's avatar

By Leefeller, August 16, 2011 at 4:29 am Link to this comment

I find this comment screaming for a change;

“Oh Anarcissie ... theoretically ... The government is the people.”

“Theatrically: would be a much more fitting word don’t you think?

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Shenonymous's avatar

By Shenonymous, August 15, 2011 at 6:10 pm Link to this comment

Hello Leefeller - if you can’t post here, why do I see your post? 

If you don’t succeed at first, try try try again.

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Leefeller's avatar

By Leefeller, August 15, 2011 at 6:06 pm Link to this comment

For some reason I cannot post here?  I suspect something is wrong, but I can say with absolutitst JD certincity, it is slightly annoying.

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Shenonymous's avatar

By Shenonymous, August 15, 2011 at 6:02 pm Link to this comment

No contradiction in what I’ve said.  I’m quite sure I said “if private
firms can’t be trusted to treat workers ?fairly, then private firms
can’t be trusted in general.”  Shall I start listing the untrustworthy
private companies?  Okay, I’ll start with
Mortgage Companies Showing Untrustworthy Documents To
Forclose Homes http://tinyurl.com/3lrvytt

VA AG Files Suit Against A Stereotypically Untrustworthy Bank
http://tinyurl.com/3slok2b

Corporate Reputation and the New PR - The Good, the Bad, and the
Trustworthy - Even successful public relations is no longer enough to
protect a company’s reputation.  http://tinyurl.com/3pyzc4e

USPharmacist.com > New FDA Strategy: Criminal ... - U.S. Pharmacist
http://tinyurl.com/4xw3bed

The Hartford Complaints - untrustworthy, bogus insurance
company http://tinyurl.com/3zv4ptv

Shushok Mccoy Brandon James, “Untrustworthy And Fraudulent
Company!!! Do Not Trust These People. They Will Take Your Money!!!” 
http://tinyurl.com/3ev9jfz

Book: “Hypercompetition: managing the dynamics of strategic
maneuvering” By Richard A. D’Aveni, Robert E. Gunther Excerpt: Antitrust
actions can also negatively affect stock value and damage the company’s
reputation (leading to higher transaction costs if other companies believe
the tarnished firm will act opportunistically or be untrustworthy).
http://tinyurl.com/3b2ol2e

Turning to the computer industry for trustworthiness.
Authentic Data Collection in an Untrustworthy Computer Environment
http://tinyurl.com/3vp5nmx

These are only a sprinkling of thousands of a variety of private
companies that have been found to be untrustworthy. But “each year,
Edelman Public Relations Worldwide publishes the Edelman Trust
Barometer - a survey of college-educated, relatively affluent people in
six countries. The purpose of the survey is to measure public trust in
business, government, the media and non-profits. This past January, in
the depths of the recession, trust in U.S. business reached a new low,
with only 38 percent of those polled saying they trusted business to do
what is right.”  http://pac.org/blog/trust-but-verify

Why should your thesis be believed?  What evidence do you present that
says public unionized workers exploit the taxpayers?  You have not
shown that public unionized workers are equivalent to Wall Street firms. 
The so-called exploited taxpayers include the government employees
who also pay taxes.  So you are saying they are exploiting themselves. 

I’ve already dealt with the standard of higher wages for public
employees, who are usually more educated in equivalent jobs than the
private sector employees.  I quote myself from 12:03pm: Public
employees ?will start new jobs earning more money than the average
private ?employee because they generally have higher levels of
education.”

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By Lew Ciefer, August 15, 2011 at 2:44 pm Link to this comment

By Anarcissie, August 15 at 7:45 am

Lew Ciefer—If people have the rights of expression, association, assembly and contract, and the right to possess and hold their own property, including their labor, then surely they have the right to make exclusive contracts and form exclusive associations, for example closed shops, regardless of whether the employer is a private business or a government.

That’s your position but there are opposing views. You have the right to form associations, etc. but you don’t have the right to exclude others free access to goods and services. And you don’t have a right to steal the labor of others to make them finance your little associations, etc; that’s slavery. Then there is the issue of the morality of passing on the cost of government—of which public unions are a part—to future unborn generations who have no voice in the matter.

Rights are arbitrary concepts and each group interprets rights differently. Usually in a way that grants them more privilege and passes the consequences on to others. Humans are greedy and self-absorbed little…

Oh Anarcissie ... theoretically ... The government is the people.

The voters of Wisconsin just voiced their opinion about your position in the only meager option they have open to them – they voted to retain the political forces that are putting limits on the public union in question. You lost because American workers rejected the Evil Capitalist (the public union) and State monopolies. And as the economy continues to tank with this god-awful Obumanomics the general public—that other, non-exclusive group of taxpayers—is going to become more belligerent about monopolies that fund the Democrat party and are little more than job havens filled with incompetents, deadbeats, and slackers costing them more when they can purchase a better product at a lower price; relieving their financial burdens.

It’s all irrelevant because the Beast is bankrupt. Americans have been living and believing delusions. Americans have been living like there really is such a thing as manna from heaven. There isn’t. Marxism/Socialism is the most dangerous and fantastical religious system on the planet. And the Marxist/Socialist God—The State—is, by far, the most vile and psychopathic of all the gods in the pantheon. 

This is why Homo sapiens conduct wars. We don’t agree on much and there is seldom any long lasting compromise. Apes love killing each other because we hate each other. Our higher mammalian brain gets us into all sorts of high-minded perplexities and we eventually resort to the lower mammalian and reptilian brain to resolve issues.  Despite all of our technological and social advances human beings are still nothing more than Apes with guns and money and the next killing fields about to take place will be a real doozy.

One way to resolve the high unemployment problem would be to have the Government declare a ‘war on death’; based on results of the State’s ‘war on poverty’ and its ‘war on drugs’ the human population would soon be on the brink of extinction and there’d be more than enough jobs to go around.

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By Lew Ciefer, August 15, 2011 at 2:41 pm Link to this comment

@ Shenonymous, August 14 at 9:13 pm

You contradict your own argument. Who says firms can’t be trusted? Most firms can be trusted and are trust worthy for the very reason you stated ... through market forces in which firms fail and new firms arise.

Public sector unions present us with particular perplexities. First, the Government, at least theoretically, is a perpetual entity. Second, there’s the question of splitting taxpayers into two distinct groups; those excluded from the monopoly and coerced into financing the monopolistic entity and those who form part of that entity. Your argument about the taxpayer exploiting workers is inverted. In the case of public unions it’s the taxpayers who comprise the exploited workers and the union and the union workers are the Wall Street firm working in concert with politicians—two monopolistic powers—against the excluded and exploited taxpayers. 

You might want to check out the stats and see just who it is that enjoys above average wages and benefits and for a highly questionable product.  It ain’t the taxpayer.

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Shenonymous's avatar

By Shenonymous, August 15, 2011 at 12:03 pm Link to this comment

Another small argument:  The fact is that public employees
aren’t when all is said and done better paid.  As reported by
USA TODAY, in March 2011, Wisconsin is one of 41 states
where public employees earn higher average pay and benefits
than private workers in the same state, but the analysis finds that
wages compensation of Wisconsin’s government workers ranks
below
the national average for non-federal public employees
and has increased only slightly since 2000.  So it is deceptive that
public employees earn more.

And there are not really any serious problems with public pension
systems.  Forbes, one of the leading financial journals, reported in
February this year The Wisconsin Lie Exposed - Taxpayers Actually
Contribute Nothing To Public Employee Pensions.  Public employees
will start new jogs earning more money than the average private
employee because they generally have higher levels of education. 
But this does not hold across similar job descriptions.  There are a
number of private sector jobs that do not seem at first look to be found
to any extent in government: such as cops, teachers, corrections officers,
and firefighters, so it looks like there is no comparison but that is an
argument that doesn’t hold up either.

Government employee unions did not have a part in creating state
budget problems.  If average working people in terms of salaries and
benefits are compared to private sector similar workers, it is easy to see
that a particularly eroding form of “class warfare” is what is taking place
and actually has no legitimacy.  The criticism of public sector employee
compensation is a means to bend the truth and shift attention away from
corporate executive pay.  This is the real problem and should be stated
every single time the argument comes up that public sector employees
are too well taken care of.  It is a lot of partisan politic babble.

Equivalent government jobs to private employees run from public paid
police compared to security forces at large corporate offices,  public
school teachers compared to private school teachers, or training
instructors for large corporations.  I can’t find anything comparable in
the private business to a probation or parole officers.  Nor firefighters. 
Maybe those who install and maintain alarm systems at residences and
business buildings.  Firefighters are mostly in volunteer units and would
not need a union.  But some communities pay firefighters to work for a
systematized department.  There are trucks and equipment to maintain. 
They not only put out fires they also go out to speak on fire prevention,
so in that sense they are teachers.  Then there are the firefighter schools
and the teachers of the skill of firefighting.  These are people too! 
Remember?

The Republicans whine that public employees need to get “real” jobs. 
That is symptomatic of why public employees need unions.  If public
workers are not considered people who have “real” jobs, then they will be
exploited, and fired at the caprice of the managers and administrators
and they need the protection of collective bargaining for that.

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Anarcissie's avatar

By Anarcissie, August 15, 2011 at 7:45 am Link to this comment

Lew Ciefer—If people have the rights of expression, association, assembly and contract, and the right to possess and hold their own property, including their labor, then surely they have the right to make exclusive contracts and form exclusive associations, for example closed shops, regardless of whether the employer is a private business or a government.

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Shenonymous's avatar

By Shenonymous, August 14, 2011 at 9:13 pm Link to this comment

Small argument: if private firms can’t be trusted to treat workers
fairly, then private firms can’t be trusted in general; and if
democratic bodies cannot be trusted to treat government workers
fairly, then democratic bodies cannot be trusted generally either. 
Do we have any historic evidence that democratic bodies have been
trustworthy?  Doesn’t it depend on which political party is in office
as to just how trustworthy a government is to the general welfare
of the people?  Under certain political parties, the feudal system is
in full bloom in spite of it being the 21st century.

We know that private firms are trusted to do some things but at
the same time the people rely on unions, regulators, and other
organizations that make sure that workers are treated fairly by
those firms. Why?  Because we don’t necessarily trust them to
do it on their own. Why?  Because they don’t have a past record
of being trusted.  Can anyone argue that they do?

The notion that democratic governments are above similar kinds
of exploitation is pretty odd.  They simply aren’t.  Democratic
governments do all kinds of terrible things. We the people know that
they steal, torture, kill… and exploit.  By comparison, does overworking
and underpaying labor seem seem contemptible?  Perhaps not nearly to
the same degree.  However, that doesn’t mean they should be given up
entirely.  Don’t we work with all our might to build institutions that check
the worst impulses of government.

That is the same humane argument for public-sector unions: that
public-sector workers, like all workers, have the right to organize to
push for better working conditions.

Yes, it is true improvements in pay for public workers will come directly
out of taxpayer pockets.  To the extent that this serves to check the
democratic impulse to treat workers badly—and we know in spades there
are those whose impulses would exploit others given the chance— it is
entirely justified.

If there’s a difference in the kind of unions, it’s that markets themselves
check private union behavior. If a private-sector union succeeds in
capturing all the available surplus generated by the employing industry,
and then demands more, it is well known that the industry will collapse.
Firms will go bankrupt.

But there is no natural compulsion to view public-sector wages and
benefits in the same way. The political process has to act to limit
increasing compensation to public workers. Workers unionize to prevent
their employers—the American taxpayers—from giving them a raw deal.

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Leefeller's avatar

By Leefeller, August 14, 2011 at 8:57 pm Link to this comment

Lew, your comprehensive replies are much appreciated, we obviously disagree on the place of Unions in our society.  I never worked as an employee where I had the opportunity to request my compensation, except when I was working for myself, bidding on jobs.  I suspect the vast majority of people are in the same boat as I and do not have such opportunity’s as you mentioned about yourself?

I realize there are cons to Unions, but I feel the pros are many more and positive. As for public employees being Unionized, I understand your Point of View, but do not embrace or agree with it in total, I respect your opinion and concerns and need to mull   them over and some of your other comments also.

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By Lew Ciefer, August 14, 2011 at 4:06 pm Link to this comment

ByAnarcissie, August 12 at 9:07 pm

In any case, it is obvious that if people have the rights of association, assembly and contract, they can form all the monopolies they like.  In fact, it usually turns out the monopolies cannot be sustained without force, usually state force, but people still have a right to try it if they want.  That is, if they’re doing good old Lockean-Jeffersonian type classical liberalism, which is what the U.S. Constitution, especially the Bill of Rights, is based on.

Much better Anarcissie although there is one little but very significant word missing from your comments; the people have the right to FREE association, assembly, contract, etc. With the public union in question one must—is coerced to—join the cabal in order to qualify for a teaching job at a public school. Also the 9th amendment limits government not the people. So by allowing a public union two monopolies—the union and government—infringe on the right of individuals from entering into a free association and/or contract with the State for whatever employment opportunity available.

ByAnarcissie, August 12 at 9:07 pm

I don’t know where you get this ‘man of the people’ stuff from.

I don’t know what you’re talking about.

ByAnarcissie, August 12 at 9:07 pm

I am talking about the basic liberal rights and their obvious implications.  Anti-monopoly laws, and a lot of labor law in fact, are questionable from this point of view.  If you look at the Wikipedia or Britannica articles, you will see that (1) the Sherman Anti-Trust Act was first used against a union, not a business monopoly, and (2) there is a good deal of controversy, both theoretical and practical, about its validity and effects.  It appears to me that this law, and those which followed and depend upon it, are Constitutional only for political reasons. As much turning and twisting and standing on the head was done as necessary.  Sherman himself was supposedly a great buddy of Rockefeller, so I don’t think he was any sort of populist or anti-capitalist.

Application of the anti-Trust laws is a totally different issue.

Once you start defending one monopoly you lose your defense against others like Big Oil, Big Pharma, Big TNC, and the most evil monopoly of all, Big Gov.

If it’s okay for Unions to monopolize labor then you can’t really complain about 5 major oil entities controlling crude and other energy sources. You also lose the argument against Big Pharma which maintains excessively high drug prices and is aided by successful lobbying to prohibit competition from outside sources.

ByAnarcissie, August 12 at 9:07 pm

Of course, if your theory is that people’s rights are whatever the state permits them to do, then we are out of liberal territory and in some other realm.

That’s not my theory but an honest evaluation of how ‘rights’ are viewed by a majority today. This is one of the Ruling Elite’s greatest accomplishments to have slowly turned the idea of ‘rights’ on its head. Marxist/Socialist Animal Farm mentality requires that humanity view rights as coming from government and not a constitutional framework in which it is the government—not the people—who is granted limited and conditional powers to help maintain a functioning free society.

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By Lew Ciefer, August 14, 2011 at 4:02 pm Link to this comment

2 of 2

By Leefeller, August 12 at 9:38 am

As for Unions lobbying for political support I feel lobbyists are the real problem for any special interest who can garner the money has preference over the will of the people. Now with the Pac system the public interest is now more defined by special interests. If one looks at how the Republicans are ignoring the people, by saying things like they are leaders and people voted for us to lead? (Canter stated this) I find this disturbing, especially when a large number of people happen to disagree? So called leaders going to special interests for their marching orders, (and kick backs) so we see the Republicans going to ALEC, Grove and Norquest and the Democrats go to their special interests, only difference being that I can see is Unions represent a collective interest of the working class while the Koch Brothers represent themselves as people too.

Right below this part you express concern for the huddled masses and fail to realize that with public unions the Evil Koch Bros. are the American working-class who has no one to represent it because the Union owns the politician and he is thus a biased arbitrator from another monopoly interest—the Government. With public unions it is the huddled masses of American workers—not the Koch brothers—that are the owners and they are denied competitive market prices for the product. It’s the little guy that you are so concerned with that is getting the shaft.

By Leefeller, August 12 at 9:38 am

If the people, the huddled masses, the public would see the deceptions and divisiveness for their manipulative value, maybe we the people could make government accountable to main street instead of Wall Street?

The people see and know. What would you have them do? You’re not going to change anything by voting for the choices given you by the Ruling Elite.

With public unions it is the Union that is Wall Street united with the State against the working-class. Benefits are gained by few while economic violence is perpetrated upon the many by denying them free entry into a job market and competitive market prices for a product.

By Leefeller, August 12 at 9:38 am

I suspect there is a silent majority out there, who would when push becomes shove and things become so bad, they will stand up and demand to be heard? (A pipe dream?)

How many millions stepped up into the trucks and walked right into those showers knowing they were going to be murdered and didn’t even bother to jump and kill a single guard?

What would you have people do?

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By Lew Ciefer, August 14, 2011 at 4:00 pm Link to this comment

1 of 2

By Leefeller, August 12 at 9:38 am

Collective Bargaining seems a very important staple of the working class, after all ones labor is all they have to bargain with.

Collective bargaining can also be seen as a form of exclusion. It’s not just one’s labor but also talent and abilities with opportunity. I’ve never joined a Union because I could not tolerate another taxing power digging into my pockets. I’ve always been at the top of my field and never had a problem with demanding what I thought a fair wage and benefits package for myself. I viewed collective bargaining as a negative for me.

And please understand that I say that as one who has been rolled under a bus many times by corporations and who has faced quite a bit of age discrimination albeit age discrimination—according to the State—has been outlawed and does not exist. Here’s an age discrimination code: “I’m sorry Mr. Ciefer but we couldn’t pay you what you are worth.” Of course the natural response is: “But I’m not asking what I’m worth. I’m willing to work for less, I’ve a family to support and I need a job and you’ve an opening for which I’m qualified.” And then you get that pained, constipated look that only a no-talent oaf in an H.R. department can produce.

By Leefeller, August 12 at 9:38 am

Lew, we differ on our views of unions, because I have personal bias from experience as a worker Union Representative fighting for the rights of public workers. This was many years ago,  fighting against management over reach and calling attention of abuses preformed by management. I won all my grievances, but without a Union behind me I would have probably been fired?

This is subjective and there might be many other personal histories out there that would swing in the other direction. Abuses of management are viable concerns and take place every day. An alternative to Unions would be some type of third party conflict resolution. The standard could be adopted that no firing is permanent until such time as a conflict resolution board has heard all the arguments and considered the evidences and made a judgment.

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By Anarcissie, August 12, 2011 at 9:07 pm Link to this comment

Lew Ciefer, August 12 at 9:50 am:

‘Anarcissie: “You haven’t mentioned any reason why government employment would cause the employees to lose their rights.  Of course a union is a monopoly, or more accurately, a cabal.  People have a right to form monopolies as long as they don’t use violent or fraudulent means.  That is, if we’re still in traditional liberal-rights territory.”

I’ve just reread the ‘bill of rights’ there’s no ‘right’ to form a monopoly in them. I can’t believe you—of all people—wrote that.’


9th Amendment: ‘The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.’  In any case, it is obvious that if people have the rights of association, assembly and contract, they can form all the monopolies they like.  In fact, it usually turns out the monopolies cannot be sustained without force, usually state force, but people still have a right to try it if they want.  That is, if they’re doing good old Lockean-Jeffersonian type classical liberalism, which is what the U.S. Constitution, especially the Bill of Rights, is based on.

I don’t know where you get this ‘man of the people’ stuff from.


If you have rights to form a monopoly why are there anti-trust laws? Are not anti-trust laws there to prohibit anti-competitive behavior? If a union is a type of monopoly and/or cabal that is anti-competitive.

I am talking about the basic liberal rights and their obvious implications.  Anti-monopoly laws, and a lot of labor law in fact, are questionable from this point of view.  If you look at the Wikipedia or Britannica articles, you will see that (1) the Sherman Anti-Trust Act was first used against a union, not a business monopoly, and (2) there is a good deal of controversy, both theoretical and practical, about its validity and effects.  It appears to me that this law, and those which followed and depend upon it, are Constitutional only for political reasons. As much turning and twisting and standing on the head was done as necessary.  Sherman himself was supposedly a great buddy of Rockefeller, so I don’t think he was any sort of populist or anti-capitalist.

Of course, if your theory is that people’s rights are whatever the state permits them to do, then we are out of liberal territory and in some other realm.

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By Lew Ciefer, August 12, 2011 at 9:50 am Link to this comment

By Anarcissie, August 11 at 7:31 pm

Lew Ciefer—You haven’t mentioned any reason why government employment would cause the employees to lose their rights.  Of course a union is a monopoly, or more accurately, a cabal.  People have a right to form monopolies as long as they don’t use violent or fraudulent means.  That is, if we’re still in traditional liberal-rights territory.

I’ve just reread the ‘bill of rights’ there’s no ‘right’ to form a monopoly in them. I can’t believe you—of all people—wrote that.

If you have rights to form a monopoly why are there anti-trust laws? Are not anti-trust laws there to prohibit anti-competitive behavior? If a union is a type of monopoly and/or cabal that is anti-competitive.

All these long lists of ‘rights’ are such adult male bovine excrement. Its Orwell’s animal farm and it’s a major factor in the destruction of traditional Western libertarian society.

If the Union buys the politician and he lives in its back pocket violence is being committed against the ‘individual’—the most defenseless minority in existence—taxpayer who is being denied the right to a competitive price for a product (labor) on an open market. Without the monopoly the taxpayer can get a better, less troublesome, product for less money. Taxpayers don’t have much of a choice when there’s a gun at their heads with a finger on the trigger (government coercion). This election was the closest thing to ‘choice’ given to the taxpayers of Wisconsin and they voted to keep the change.

I understand where you’re trying to go with this. It won’t work. To begin with there are no such things as ‘rights.’ They’re made up. The only right you have—provided you prevail—is the one that you’re willing to defend to the death against whatever power it is trying to take that right away from you. If your right can be taken away by government it is only a privilege. And that is exactly how people today—especially in government—think of rights. It’s a growing list of privileges where government (a body of incompetent social-workers, criminals, riffraff, poltroons, idiots, morons, amoral fundaments, etc. laboring within the framework of a man-made institution) tells us what we can or cannot do. In essence, dictating how we shall live our lives.

Today’s version is particularly onerous due to having cast aside the traditional Western libertarian concept of limited government authority and equality under the law to a never ending list of governmental privilege to the animals on the farm where the general concept is that all animals are equal but some are more equal than others. The libertarian concept of equality of opportunity has been cast aside for the communist/socialist equality of outcome…which is an impossibility.

Second, we make exceptions in life, regardless of perceived rights, all the time. If people have a right to form a monopoly the individual taxpayer also has a right to the best price for a product available in a competitive market and being a minority of one is entitled to protection from said cabal(s) who’s overcharging for a product due to monopoly privilege. These arbitrary ‘rights’ are a never ending whirlpool taking society down the toilet bowl. And we know how this ends; we’ve seen it in the U.S.S.R., China, Cuba, Vietnam, Cambodia, etc. It ends with no rights and only one privilege—obey or die!

Compromise ... you can have a public union but it is to be open shop and no right to strike because you have no right to strike against the people.

It won’t be accepted and we know why. Because it’ll diminish Union leaders power over politicians and more importantly ‘privilege.’ And that’s what life is all about—gaining ever increasing privilege.

We’re just apes hiding behind a facade of high-minded ideals that allow us to lie to ourselves.

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By Leefeller, August 12, 2011 at 9:38 am Link to this comment

Collective Bargaining seems a very important staple of the working class, after all ones labor is all they have to bargain with. 

Lew, we differ on our views of unions, because I have personal bias from experience as a worker Union Representative fighting for the rights of public workers. This was many years ago,  fighting against management over reach and calling attention of abuses preformed by management. I won all my grievances, but without a Union behind me I would have probably been fired?

As for Unions lobbying for political support I feel lobbyists are the real problem for any special interest who can garner the money has preference over the will of the people. Now with the Pac system the public interest is now more defined by special interests. If one looks at how the Republicans are ignoring the people, by saying things like they are leaders and people voted for us to lead? (Canter stated this) I find this disturbing, especially when a large number of people happen to disagree? So called leaders going to special interests for their marching orders, (and kick backs) so we see the Republicans going to ALEC, Grove and Norquest and the Democrats go to their special interests, only difference being that I can see is Unions represent a collective interest of the working class while the Koch Brothers represent themselves as people too. 

If the people, the huddled masses, the public would see the deceptions and divisiveness for their manipulative value, maybe we the people could make government accountable to main street instead of Wall Street?

I suspect there is a silent majority out there, who would when puch becomes shove and things become so bad, they will stand up and demand to be heard? (A pipe dream?)

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By Anarcissie, August 11, 2011 at 7:31 pm Link to this comment

Lew Ciefer—You haven’t mentioned any reason why government employment would cause the employees to lose their rights.  Of course a union is a monopoly, or more accurately, a cabal.  People have a right to form monopolies as long as they don’t use violent or fraudulent means.  That is, if we’re still in traditional liberal-rights territory.

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By Lew Ciefer, August 11, 2011 at 3:36 pm Link to this comment

By Anarcissie, August 10 at 6:11 pm

Unions are an expression of the fundamental liberal rights of communication, physical liberty, association, assembly, and contract.  If people reject the idea that other people can form unions because they’re employees, or a certain class of employees, then they don’t believe in the liberal rights.  The system preceding liberalism-capitalism was feudalism, so maybe that is what they desire, although I suppose it could be that they’d like something more totalitarian.  Beats me.  I am truly at a loss to understand the epidemic of authoritarianism in American culture

I don’t have a problem with unions. I have a problem with public unions. When a corporation and a union enter into negotiations the two opposing sides are dealing directly with one another. With public unions that isn’t the case. The unions donate large sums of money and the politician enters his new home—the union’s back pocket—but it is the taxpayer who is stuck with the tab. A bought off representative isn’t representing the best interest of all tax payers. There’s no difference—IMO—in a union buying a politician from a corporation buying a politician. Once bought the politician, whose duty is to represent the people, is equally compromised.

I reiterate, your stance is a false dichotomy. There is at least one other option. Move forward, rather than devolve to feudalism, with a more equitable system ... open shop?

What’s more authoritarian than monopoly? Public unions monopolize labor available to government from the national labor pool. Mercantilism is monopoly and is a major contributor to our current economic woes. Big Oil is an oligopoly. Public unions work much in the same way only instead of monopolizing crude they monopolize labor.

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By Lew Ciefer, August 11, 2011 at 3:35 pm Link to this comment

By Leefeller, August 10 at 6:54 pm

Actually we may agree more than disagree. It may be the Unions who called the recall, but the people the working people who are directly effected may have had something to do with it.
As for the money, the Special Interests, corporation;s, etc spent 80 million, what does that tell us?... Invest in advertising?
From what it sounds, once more it was again about people against money. This is the issue.

We do.

It tells us that we need true reform because human beings are fallible apes. Corporations—despite what a bunch of jackasses in black robes determine—are not individuals and shouldn’t be allowed to donate any funds to any politician. And the same should apply to unions. We need a system that guarantees total transparency designed by citizens groups NOT politicians. They abide by what we say. If we limited political donations to $10.00 maximum per citizen per year we wouldn’t have to listen to those gasbags for more than a day. Nothing they say means anything anyway.

By Leefeller, August 10 at 6:54 pm

Far as I am concerned, Unions and ALEC the Koch Brothers should not have any say in government, but it can also be supposed and rightly so, Unions represent people while the Koch Brothers represent what?

They both represent their ‘share holders.’ No entity should be treated as an individual with rights of an individual. I’m not against unions as long as it is voluntary. I’m against PUBLIC unions.

By Leefeller, August 10 at 6:54 pm

As for the jobs created, I would like to see what job were created,... the under employed, Wal Mart, McDonalds?
I heard the same comments from the Republican incumbents. What is the truth, we seldom know.

I don’t know that’s why I asked.

A nation of semi-illiterates whose major tech skills are an ability to say ‘actually’ every four or five spoken words and being able to work a Blackberry plays right into the hands of major corporate entities such as Wal-Mart. The supply always exceeds demand. There are exceptions to every rule but I don’t think flipping burgers should be anyone’s first career choice. 

Is ‘actually’ the new ‘like’?

By Leefeller, August 10 at 6:54 pm

So we could or may agree,... Lobbyists and Pacs the unLobbyists like ALEC and Grove, and I agree including the Unions should not be allowed to run the halls of congress like rats at a New York Taco Bell!

We do agree. And I’ll go one further. Get rid of corporations. Tear down those revolving doors between the Fed, Wall Street, and the Treasury. If you work for one you cannot ever work in one of the others. These are just some rough ideas. I haven’t all the answers.


We’re not that different are we?

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By Margaret Currey, August 11, 2011 at 3:18 am Link to this comment
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The people who work for the government have the best job security while they are in office, case in point cathy nicholson the republician election official who held out the count until the last minute, last time she found extra ballots two days later and of course since she is a republician in a republician stronghold (also leans very right) how can a democrat posibaly win?

I totally agree with the person who is “Inherit the Wind”

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By Leefeller, August 10, 2011 at 6:54 pm Link to this comment

Lew Cifer,

Actually we may agree more than disagree. It may be the Unions who called the recall, but the people the working people who are directly effected may have had something to do with it.

As for the money, the Special Interests, corporation;s, etc spent 80 million, what does that tell us?... Invest in advertising?

From what it sounds, once more it was again about people against money. This is the issue. 

Far as I am concerned, Unions and ALEC the Koch Brothers should not have any say in government, but it can also be supposed and rightly so, Unions represent people while the Koch Brothers represent what?

As for the jobs created, I would like to see what job were created,... the under employed, Wal Mart, McDonalds? I do not know…..Lew asked; I heard today that in the past six months of this current governor’s term Wisconsin has had 39,000 new jobs created, paid all its debt, has a AAA rating, and for the first time in many years finds itself in the black. Is that true?

I heard the same comments from the Republican incumbents. What is the truth, we seldom know. 

So we could or may agree,... Lobbyists and Pacs the unLobbyists like ALEC and Grove, and I agree including the Unions should not be allowed to run the halls of congress like rats at a New York Taco Bell!

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By Anarcissie, August 10, 2011 at 6:11 pm Link to this comment

Unions are an expression of the fundamental liberal rights of communication, physical liberty, association, assembly, and contract.  If people reject the idea that other people can form unions because they’re employees, or a certain class of employees, then they don’t believe in the liberal rights.  The system preceding liberalism-capitalism was feudalism, so maybe that is what they desire, although I suppose it could be that they’d like something more totalitarian.  Beats me.  I am truly at a loss to understand the epidemic of authoritarianism in American culture.

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By Blu, August 10, 2011 at 5:50 pm Link to this comment
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Lew Ciefer loves himself some Koch - blowing his dog whistle again

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By Lew Ciefer, August 10, 2011 at 5:36 pm Link to this comment

By Anarcissie, August 10 at 2:50 pm

Maybe the folk want to go back to feudalism.

I’m surprised by several of your comments these past few days. Usually you seem to be one of the more astute posters here—especially on economics—and yet you come up with this. Is that the choice; public unions or feudalism? That’s a false dichotomy if there ever was one. It’s so below your talents.

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By Lew Ciefer, August 10, 2011 at 5:35 pm Link to this comment

By Leefeller, August 10 at 2:01 pm

Lew Ciefer, Possibly a stab at Sarcasm? ... My turn to ask,,, what are you referring to in your last post? I sort of gather you are pissed at Democrats, either the spineless ones, the boot licking ones or all of them? I am missing something or unaware of the what you are describing here?

You missed it. The union-boot-lickers are the politicians which I believe we agree are probably mostly—although not entirely—democrats. That DOES NOT mean that the other side isn’t licking the boots of their masters.

I don’t like the idea of public unions. When they demand more they aren’t dealing with the employer—the taxpayers—but rather politicians; politicians who are always looking to sell ‘their core values’ to the highest bidder ... which is never the people at large but rather particular lobbying interests some of which the biggest spenders in today’s elections are ... tah dah ... public unions! They are in effect a large, monopolized, constituency for bigger government. The politicians are supposed to being looking out for ALL the taxpayers not just those who, through their unions, become one of the largest most powerful lobbying groups. Also it is granting monopoly power to unions over the government’s labor supply. Who lobbies for the most vulnerable minority in the land, the individual?

This election was brought on by the unions who spent, reportedly, some $34 million dollars trying to overturn the last election results. It backfired on them. The people of Wisconsin spoke ... again. Now the democrats, finding themselves in the role of the two sheep rather than the three wolves, are crying foul.

I heard today that in the past six months of this current governor’s term Wisconsin has had 39,000 new jobs created, paid all its debt, has a AAA rating, and for the first time in many years finds itself in the black. Is that true?

At some point Americans are going to have to come to the realization there that is no such thing as a free lunch. Somebody pays. Personally I would like to see the first steps to cut all deficits begin with an 80% pay cut in salary and repudiation of all benefits—including retirement—for all politicians regardless of position and time spent sucking every nickel and dime out of the pockets of the citizenry. And let’s make it retroactive to 1900.

Have you noticed how much the world resembles the 60s minus the braless, long-haired hippy chicks, bell-bottoms jeans and good music? We even have a floppy-eared LBJ clone—only a few shades darker—in the White House. The Great Society wasn’t. It’s almost like we’re living a Twilight Zone episode.

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By lasmog, August 10, 2011 at 5:05 pm Link to this comment

I had hoped that Packer fans would be smarter than this.  This is depressing.

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By Anarcissie, August 10, 2011 at 2:50 pm Link to this comment

Maybe the folk want to go back to feudalism.

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By Leefeller, August 10, 2011 at 2:01 pm Link to this comment

Lew Ciefer, Possibly a stab at Sarcasm? ... My turn to ask,,, what are you referring to in your last post? I sort of gather you are pissed at Democrats, either the spineless ones, the boot licking ones or all of them? I am missing something or unaware of the what you are describing here?

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By Lew Ciefer, August 10, 2011 at 12:41 pm Link to this comment

The democrats shot themselves in the foot by appealing directly—bypassing spineless, Union boot-licking politicians—to the employers of all those public union workers and LOST!

Congratulations to the liberty-loving people of Wisconsin!

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By Nf, August 10, 2011 at 12:14 pm Link to this comment
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With any luck we can rid of some democrats next week. Civil servants are out of control.

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By Leefeller, August 10, 2011 at 9:30 am Link to this comment

ITW much appreciated.  Been following the Wisconsin recall as much as possible, though the mass media has been keeping the story on the back burners, for I suspect it dost not fit their comfort zone corporate agendas.

It was refreshing for me seeing Democrats in Wisconsin standing up for the people instead of special interests, by supporting the working classes in their state, especially after watching Obama and the Federal Democrats moving to the right as bandoleer carriers for the Republicans.

My only hope is what happened in Wisconsin doesn’t stay in Wisconson! Lets face it the Republicans would lower minimum wages, bust unions and make all states right to work states.

The obvious development of the radical Red states were corographed by special interestslike the unlobbyists ALEC,the Koch Brothrs and Fox. Their agenda is to push through programs to further destroy unions.  It seems like an apparent attempt to relegate the working class to the lower class and increase unemployment lines, not one thing has been done to create jobs. (This seems world wide?)  This seems so damn apparent, the main theme from the Fed Republicans appears to be destroying the New Deal with the help of the minions in the Tea Party, supported by the same people,.... ALEC, Fox, Koch Brothers and others like Norquest and Grove?

It is and has always been a fight for the working people to have a better life, while the self entitled some of the wealthy feel they should be the only ones who should have entitlements.

Has anyone noticed we are getting close to 2012?  Protests in Israel, again hidden by the MSM? Dost not look good for the people in Wisconsin, the USA and the world! Lets hope I am wrong, I like being wrong!

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By Dr Bones, August 10, 2011 at 9:14 am Link to this comment
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The union leaders needed to call for a nationwide general strike.  You’ve got to withdraw the labor and put a real hurt on Wall Street to stop the attack on wages and working conditions.

Mr. O, never found his soft shoes.

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By Gregory, August 10, 2011 at 9:13 am Link to this comment
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Well I’m not too shocked about all of this—why was
so much faith placed into a recall election as the
only option for dealing with Scott Walker? It was
never a good strategy, and now because it was hyped
so much by Democrats and many liberals, this failure
to regain control will be misconstrued as a victory
for Walker and a sign of support for his policies.
And Walker will continue to pursue his agenda,
perhaps cautiously, but without any real fear.

There were tons of people—I was with them, there,
surrounding the capital when I still lived in
Madison—who wanted Scott out and those policies
reversed, but that didn’t mean they wanted Democrats
in, especially with the recent economic woes. Without
any third or fourth options available, it was obvious
this would backfire. Without equal representation in
the local government based on the percentage of
votes, there was not going to be the movement away
from Walker’s policy that people wanted, even if the
Democrats all made it in. What guarantee was there
that they would have reversed everything he did,
instead of conceding on half of it and calling it a
victory, like President Obama? Would the Democrats
have increased taxes on the rich? Is that even the
best way to deal with this anymore—don’t we need
changes that are more fundamental?

Putting all our hope into one party, especially in a
system where corporations are gaining more and more
power over it, was never a good idea.

There should have been, and there still should be, a
state-wide strike. Shut the state down. Shut down the
multinational businesses and supporters of policies
like Walker’s. Occupy the capital. Put the fear of
God in them, and make them understand the state
belongs to the citizens, and THEY decide what flies
and what does not. Make them understand what
democracy is. It will mean a lot of suffering and
require a lot of patience and strength, and
Wisconsinites will have to go into it together, but
electing Democrats would never have led to the
reversals or progress many of these people,
especially the farmers, wished to see.

We have to stop putting hope into our political
parties. When the entire electoral, legislative, and
judicial system has itself become corrupt, neither
party will ever be able to represent the citizens.
They have to corrupt themselves just to play the
game.

You want change? Its up to us, working together,
against those who would keep all the wealth,
forgetting all but themselves.

“Liberty, Equality, and Solidarity!” is the rallying
cry of a democracy. Its time for the rise of the
American Citizen.

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By John Sullivan, August 10, 2011 at 9:06 am Link to this comment
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Inherit the Wind,

Forget Somalia. Who the f**k wants to go or live in Wisconsin?

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By Memory_Hole, August 10, 2011 at 9:01 am Link to this comment

I find it a tad suspicious that in Butler Village, Waukesha County, where the notorious GOP activist and County Clerk Kathy Nickolaus presided over the final electronic tabulation, exit poll workers were prevented from doing their work.  Their work is the ONLY way to check the integrity of the elections.

http://www.bradblog.com/?p=8661

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By Inherit The Wind, August 10, 2011 at 8:29 am Link to this comment

LeeFeller for TruthDigger of the Week!

While the arrogant teabaggers are slapping themselves on the back, they should note the ominous clouds on the horizon.
Markets tumbling,
Companies pulling their horns in
The bellweather of what’s coming next, Great Britain, is dissolving into anarchy as the frustrated lower classes have been rioting for 4 days straight.

If anarchy and no government is what they want I suggest the review the ideal model of a nation with no central government: It’s called Somalia. The strongest strong men lead, with total power to commit any atrocity, no matter how perverted and cruel. They let ordinary people starve while they steal humanitarian aide and sell it.  They make the Mafia look benevolent.

And who the fuck wants to go or live there?

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By Leefeller, August 10, 2011 at 8:01 am Link to this comment

Thanks John M,

It is has been all along the Unions which caused all the problems with their collective bargaining such a nasty thing, the working class must be put in its place and the Koch Brothers and ALEC had something to do with it. All the Union money got what it deserved to loose pouring in so much money, which you just so conveniently mention. We know the other side was working from integrity and accountability because the Koch Brothers and ALEC are the icon of morality along with the Tea Party. 

According to John M as a
question?

“How did Republicans hold out? It hasn’t hurt that
Walker’s reforms have dramatically helped school
districts within the state save millions of dollars
by abolishing the main Wisconsin teachers’ union’s
insurance racket. Nor does it hurt that Wisconsin,
under the business-friendly leadership of Walker and
a Republican state legislature, created more than
half of the jobs created in the United States during
the month of June.”

Wonder what jobs they were? I suppose well paying jobs but not Union?  And maybe John M, you can cite the school district helpd by abolishing unions, from those evil over paid Union slacker teachers. 

Yes the working class have been just to damn uppity, one way to show them is pass tax breaks for the wealthy and and call them the job creators then run Republicans as Democrats plus make it harder for people to vote. Hale Wisconsin Walker and the people he works for, ALEC and the Koch Brothers, who are the real job creators just like no union Wal Mart!

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By Dr Bones, August 10, 2011 at 7:45 am Link to this comment
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The Unions lost when they failed to call for a nation wide general strike, as they were fully under attacked.  If they don’t have the courage to withdraw their labor, then they lose.  That pretty much shows you how cowardice the Union leaders are. 

We also saw the cowardice of Obama, who couldn’t utter a single word of leadership about the illegal attempt to end the right to assemble that even Reagan said was an inherent right in the US Constitution.  But then Reagan had been leader of the actor’s guild, unlike Mr. O who never lead anything.

Wizzconsin is a strange state.  Half down to earth social liberals; and the other half authoritarian cheese heads, that would like nothing more than to sacrifice for the Koch Brothers.

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By werdy, August 10, 2011 at 7:35 am Link to this comment

It will and would have taken more than an election. It was sort of disappointing to see so much faith given away to the electoral process. Whether it be misinformed voters, non-voters, corporate zombie voters, or corporate zombie vote counters, the corporate tyrants have all the cards and will next time around. Time to change the game.

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By John M, August 10, 2011 at 6:53 am Link to this comment

An energized Democratic base was supposed to turn out
yesterday. It was supposed to pry away from
Republicans their total control of Wisconsin’s state
legislature. Republicans had gone after the state’s
public employee unions, and this was supposed to be
an overreach that would cost them dearly in
yesterday’s recall elections. If Democrats could pick
up three of the six seats under recall, they could
win back the state Senate and block Gov. Scott
Walker’s agenda.

Every Republican I spoke to before the election
expressed pessimism. The expectations were clearly in
favor of a Democratic takeover—so much so that
Republicans in Wisconsin’s legislature took the
extraordinary step of passing an early redistricting
bill.

And then…it just didn’t work out the way the unions
had hoped.

In the end, the union-backed Democrats picked up only
two state Senate seats in Wisconsin last night, at a
staggering cost in time, effort, and of course money.
One of the seats was solidly Democratic, held by a
Republican due to an apparent fluke of nature. The
other was held by an alleged adulterer who had moved
outside his district to live with his young mistress,
and whose wife was supporting his recall.

As for the other four Republican incumbents the
unions tried to recall, they didn’t end up coming
very close. And remember—these weren’t just any
Republican incumbents. These were the ones that the
unions judged most vulnerable, which is why they
collected petition signatures against them.

How did Republicans hold out? It hasn’t hurt that
Walker’s reforms have dramatically helped school
districts within the state save millions of dollars
by abolishing the main Wisconsin teachers’ union’s
insurance racket. Nor does it hurt that Wisconsin,
under the business-friendly leadership of Walker and
a Republican state legislature, created more than
half of the jobs created in the United States during
the month of June.

To be sure, yesterday’s contests offered few lessons
for 2012, as far as the status of swing-state
Wisconsin is concerned. But at the state level, and
on the level of ideas, yesterday’s elections have
deep meaning. And with two Democrats in the state
Senate facing recalls next week—perhaps one is
genuinely vulnerable—we may have seen the unions’
high political tide, especially if Walker’s reforms
really do weaken their clout.

“The people” were supposed to be on the side of the
unions who protested at the state capitol when
Walker’s bill passed, limiting the unions’ collective
bargaining privileges against taxpayers and school
districts. But it turns out that “the people” had
other ideas. In the end, even a massive infusion of
cash and union volunteers was not enough to deliver
the three state Senate recall races the unions
needed, despite the fact that President Obama carried
all six of the seats in question in 2008.

This marks the unions’ third huge defeat in Wisconsin
this year. The other two were the passage of Walker’s
bill and the re-election of David Prosser to the
state Supreme Court. The grand talk of recalling
Walker himself next year seems a bit blustery now,
given the great failure of last night.

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By Inherit The Wind, August 10, 2011 at 4:50 am Link to this comment

Wasn’t it Stalin who said it didn’t matter who got the most votes, but only who counted the votes?  In one election the head of elections is notorious for making “mistakes” that always seem to benefit the Republicans.  She did it again in the 6th of the elections, and, Low and Behold! The incumbent barely won!  And the Democrats have refused to demand a recount….

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By Leefeller, August 10, 2011 at 2:17 am Link to this comment

Well I had hoped accountability, integrity and the ideals of the working class would have triumphed over big money, but this proves money trumps people. The Republican Tea Bags lost two seats in two Republican districts, now two Democrats are on the voting block next week.

So it seems lies, lots of money and voter suppression work effectively to support what seems text book Fascism.

I suspect the Republicans will be empowered by this, for they are empowered taking anything from the working class (middle class) and of course the evil unions are who are all socialists.

This article seems objective in its reporting of the election results, but is derelict in explaining the reasons why people requested the recall?

I also find Truth Dig derelict in its coverage of big money Koch Brothers, ALEC, Nor-quest and Grove, who have established and purchased the Red States governing bodies like whores. Sates like Wisconsin, Ohio, Michigan and Florida and others.  The working class seems to be doomed and has been for many years.  This proves big money buys what ever it wants, votes, money buys governments, buys governors, buys congress it seems Democracy is represented only by the money spent on it.  For it has been said,... money is people too!

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