Standing with Walker sounds more like lying

It’s always nice to hear directly from the folks who are out to eat your lunch. I’m on a lot of different lists for a lot of different reasons, so I’ve received several fundraising calls from the Walker camp in the last week and a mailing, too. That’s a lot of action for a guv who is less than three months into a four-year term and for whom I never contributed in the first place.

The pitch is consistent and it rests on three pillars of fantasy, along with one unspoken truth, which is this: Walker’s in a ton of political trouble and so are his enablers in the legislature. But let’s go through the big bullet points here and talk about them a little:

  1. “Former Governor Jim Doyle and his Democrat majorities in the previous legislature created this financial mess.”
  2. Well, not exactly. Back when Governor Doyle and the legislature were preparing to pass Doyle’s first biennial budget, George Mason University Professor of Government and Politics in the Department of Public and International Affairs Dr. James K. Conant penned an article in the June 2003 edition of Public Budgeting & Finance. Here’s what it said:

    “Wisconsin’s lawmakers increased spending and cut taxes during the 1990s. Then, in January of 2001, they faced an estimated $2.4 billion budget gap or deficit for the FY 2001–2003 biennium. They cut spending and generated additional revenue by borrowing against future tobacco settlement income. Still, by January of 2002, the estimated deficit had grown by an additional $1.3 billion, and more cutting and borrowing took place. Despite these actions, a $3.5 billion deficit was projected for FY 2003–2005.”

    The truth is that the structural deficit was almost the same when Doyle began his first term as it is today. It was inherited from Republican governors Tommy Thompson and his short-term successor, Scott McCallum. It’s also worth noting that as the 2003 session of the Wisconsin legislature opened, the GOP held the majority in the Assembly 58-41 and in the Senate 18-15.

    While that structural deficit persists today, a lot has happened since 2003. One trifling matter, for example, was the Great Recession under Republican President George W. Bush. Those Bush tax cuts didn’t do much for employment or prosperity for anyone except the very wealthy:

    http://www.ibtimes.com/articles/66809/20100929/income-gap-census-bureau-poverty.htm

    States all across the U.S. are facing fiscal challenges, so to say that our problems here can legitimately be pinned on Doyle and the Democrats, given the history, is beyond ridiculous. (I guess it’s hard to raise money by admitting that a good share of the blame belongs to your own party and the policies it has promoted, including the single most significant factor in play, which is the aftermath of the worst financial crisis since the 1930s.)

  3. “Scott Walker ran for Governor promising to enact the very proposal he has now put forth.”
  4. No, he didn’t. Show me where he talked about busting unions. In talking with editorial board members, going back over coverage, researching statements and reviewing advertising, Scott Walker absolutely did NOT promise “the very proposal he has now put forth.” As the frequent, massive demonstrations and post election polls are showing, he would not have been elected if he had. (He would also not need to be breathlessly trying to raise money right now because most people would be pleased with him. There’s nothing to worry about with recalls when the majority is behind what you’re doing, right?)

  5. “Wisconsin taxpayers can no longer afford to be held hostage by Union Bosses.”

Since that certainly isn’t the case, it’s a moot point. What might be more appropriate to ask is whether we can we afford to be held hostage by Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce. How about the Republican Governors Association and all their Wisconsin corporate donors? The Koch Brothers? The Club for Growth? Karl Rove’s American Crossroads PAC? All of them poured big money into the GOP ticket and Wisconsin’s state elections last fall. Besides, a lot of people are looking at Scott Walker contributor lists these days and I don’t want them thinking about me the way I know they’re thinking about a lot of the other Walker contributors.

No, if Scott Walker and the Republicans need more money than they’ve already got, I would suggest that they get it from the very same folks they’ve been getting it from all along – (and it sure as hell wasn’t me.) Look, it’s only fair that the people who are getting a return on their investment be the very same people to make it. I realize that’s not the majority of folks, but hey, that’s just the way it is when you run an agenda that only benefits narrow interests. If the prime beneficiaries of GOP policies don’t want to take a share of their booty to keep their acolytes in office, then that’s just tough luck.

I always like a letter with a punchy close and this one saved the biggest laugh for last, in the P.S. portion. “I have sent this urgent letter to you because you are one of the most generous and loyal Republicans in our state.” Gee, I sure hope that part is true. Because if that’s the case, then the GOP has even bigger problems than they might have imagined… J

JR

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3 Responses to “Standing with Walker sounds more like lying”

  1. Jose Garcia Says:

    First off, to call the period under GWBush, “The Great Recession”, is not true. I am not a person of great wealth or owner of a business. I am just a common man working everyday to support my family. During this period under GWB, I did very well salary wise than other period in my employment history. I was able to recover from the prior financial woes experienced during the previous administration, which saw me scrounging a living for my family due to a large increase in my taxes. Now in this present administration, my family and I are living paycheck to paycheck. They have reduced hours at my job to the point that it seems to be affecting the day to day operations. This has happened since the middle of last year. To me, this period we are living now is “The Great Recession.” Not the one before… Second. To say that the wealthy prospered during that time period would be true if you include this past 2010 financial period. I remember reading the words of a Mr. George Soros, who said that he was having “a wonderful crisis.” His words I see being backed up by an article I read from “The Hedge Funds Review”, by Madison Marriage, written 20 Jan., 2011, saying, “Hedge funds experienced the largest increase in assets in history in the fourth quarter of 2010, growing by $149 billion dollars to $1.97 trillion dollars, according to Hedge Fund Research.” When it comes to Mr. Soros I have nothing more to say….Third. When it comes to unions I write from personal experience. At one of my former employers, the head shop-steward ordered that we stage a walk-out in two weeks. A women, who had more guts than all the men there, asked, “If we walked out, will you guarantee our jobs when we come back?” The shop-steward replied, “We don’t guarantee anything.” When the time came to walk out, we stayed at our stations. In other than words, we told the union to go screw themselves. They are out of control. The only people who kept them on a leash to keep them from getting out of line was the Mafia. Them and them alone. Let me make myself clear. I have lost faith in all of our public officials, regardless of party. The Republicans have no guts to stand up for their principles, regardless of what others say. The Democrats are Socialists to the core. There is nothing democratic in their principles and their actions. They should say the truth about it, “come out of the closet”, and let the citizens decide if they want to be ruled under Socialist ideas. When it comes to the executive branch, I did not care much for the first and second Bushes. I am not a fan of dynasties. Clinton made a mockery of the White House with his skirt chasing, using it as a motel. JFK was a real playboy, but he knew there was a line in the sand that should never be crossed in respecting that sacred “house of the people.” If Obama was given the job of running a real business or corporation, he would run it into the ground. He was elected only because of his race. There were many other black politicians more qualified than him. Lets not forget he is half white. He is the first mixed race president, not the first black president. He portrays himself as President of the world. Someone should remind him that he is only the President of the United States. Like i tell others, if you don’t like what I say, call your local politician and have them start a movement to change the wording of the First Admendment from, “shall not be abridged”, to, “shall be abridged”, and have me arrested and imprisoned.

  2. I disagree that the Great Recession did not commence under George W. Bush and I think you would have trouble finding a reputable economist to back up the claim. Anecdotal information can be interesting, but not a good way to judge larger trends. The facts speak for themselves, in terms of overall income distribution and proportionate shares. As for the rest, you are entitled to your own opinions.

  3. randyk100 Says:

    The bottom line is this—If weasel walker’s policies worked for the GOOD of most, not even all Wisconsinites, they wouldn’t have to resort to subterfuge, middle of the night Shady Maneuvers, loopholes (actually becoming nooses now!), and BLANTLY DEFYING open meetings law to pass bills. Unfortunately, I’ve reached the point where no matter what comes out of walker’s self rightness, I don’t believe it. He has lost my respect and I don’t TRUST him. I just want the guy out of here ASAP. People expect their leaders to actually lead and bring people together. What has walker done? Look at your streets for the answer! Weasel, your house of cards is going to fall, card by card until all you will have is fitzy—the JOKER. Not a pleasant thought is it!!

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