Waiting on Wisconsin

I am starting my observations on Tuesday. This may be a stream of consciousness observation week. Right now it is @ 12:30. I have Ed Schultz streaming on the computer. He and John Nichols of the Nation magazine continue to report absolutely HUGE turnouts. This normally bodes well for Democrats. I heard a call this morning on the Stephanie Miller show where the caller said he voted at 8:15 and they had already passed 2010 numbers in his precinct and hour into the vote.

In addition to facing this recall Scott Walker is feeling the rope of prosecution for illegal acts in office tighten around his neck. Win or lose it sounds like he will most likely face prosecution. A year from now he may well be out of a job, in prison and no longer on David Koch’s call list.

More later ……

Well, Walker won.
With reports of voters up all over the place, I really thought that Barrett had a great chance. When the race was called there were still lines of voters yet to vote in Wisconsin. What is most discouraging is that it looks like tons of money is the key. And let’s be honest, they have all the money.

A most discouraging vote in California.
When I heard last night that a couple of cities in California had voted to lower retirement benefits for city workers I had to do a triple take. Is this the next great movement for Republicans? Have legitimate contracts overturned by a vote of the people? San Diego and San Jose overwhelmingly approved this slashing by a vote of 2 to 1.

The mayors in both cities claim that workers’ pensions is the culprit in municipal finance problems. My guess is that if you looked real deep, money was probably invested in the stock market, most likely there was some invested in those fine “mortgage backed securities.” As the stock market crashed, so did retirement funds. I do not know, but just a supposition based on what else has transpired recently.

So I expect this will be the next panacea. Cities will take their finance problems out on their workers. The public has been softened up to vote against the workers for the past decade as Republicans made workers (especially union workers) the scape goats for other bad decisions – such as large tax abatements for businesses. As the trend sweeps the nation, voters will be all geared up to cut workers pay and pension. This is a great example of “divide and conquer.” And the Republicans can simply wipe their hands and say it is what the public demanded.

The next show will be the Walker trial.
As both state and federal prosecutors hone in on Scott Walker for illegal acts while in office, it will be very interesting to see where it takes Wisconsin. No doubt, the Walker team will draw whatever trials out for as long as they can. Good chance he will be under indictment at least by the next election.

Lessons for Iowa.
If you are under the impression that what happened in Wisconsin can’t happen here, may I suggest that you are not paying attention. Branstad was a founding member of ALEC. At least every Republican in the Iowa house is a member of ALEC. We don’t know about Republicans in the senate, but I would not be surprised if they were also. ALEC is one of the main driving forces behind the union crushing, school closing, pension cutting etc. that has been going on in Wisconsin, Ohio, Michigan and Florida.

The difference between Iowa and the aforementioned states is one vote in the Iowa Senate. All the hateful, regressive legislation is ready to go in Iowa and I am sure Bransatd is ready to sign up a storm, all they need is the legislature. Make no doubt the money will flow like water to buy the legislature and turn us into a a pre-1900 paradise.

All we have is boots on the ground and our sense of fairness. If you have never contributed or volunteered, this is the year that you must step up. This year it is quite important that you not only support our national candidates, but local candidates as well. This year it is critical.

About Dave Bradley

retired in West Liberty
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