Wisconsin, Scott Walker, and Protesting Workers: The Story Continues

Submitted by Elaine Magliaro, Guest Blogger

There have been some new developments in the Wisconsin story since my last post on the subject, Is the Scott Walker Story Just the Tip of the Koch Brothers Political Iceberg?. More than six hundred comments have been left at that post—and it takes a long time to load the page. I thought it best to write up a new post for people who would like to continue the discussion on the subject of Governor Scott Walker, the protesting workers in Wisconsin, Walker’s anti-union budget repair bill, the AWOL Democratic state senators, and various and sundry other things related to the subject.

Today, I’m just providing links to some news stories on the subject for you.

Wisconsinites were locked out of their capital building. WBAY (ABC)

Madison firefighters were denied access to one of the Capitol’s entrances when they were responding to an emergency. (Journal Sentinel)

A Democratic Wisconsin state representative who was tackled by police when he tried to enter the Capitol to get some of his clothes said that his Capitol card has been disabled. (TPMMucraker)

Some Democratic state legislators wanted to be accessible to their constituents so they moved their desks outside the Capitol to conduct business. (The Nation)

The Wisconsin Senate passed a resolution that called for police to take 14 state Democratic senators who fled to Illinois into custody for contempt. (Wisconsin State Journal)

Scott Walker’s budget defunds Planned Parenthood and targets contraception access. (Huffington Post)

A recent Rasmussen Poll shows that nearly 60% of Wisconsin voters disapprove of Governor Walker. (TPMDC)

AFL-CIO plans another big rally at the Wisconsin Capitol for this Saturday. (TPMDC)

573 thoughts on “Wisconsin, Scott Walker, and Protesting Workers: The Story Continues”

  1. “Actually the economy expanded, in terms of % of GDP, from 1950 to 1960 44%. From the period 1895 to 1905 it expanded 45%.”

    Hmm. No link to data source I wonder why? Also too considering that in the first instance the figure is for 1950 to 1960, while the second is from 1895 to 1905, the comparison needed some jiggling. What was the figure from 1890 to 1900 and/or 1900 to 1910? Apples to oranges though always works statistically.

    “You are making a blanket statement and you are incorrect. Not all businesses of the time relied on governement subsidies and favors.”

    You were the one citing “Robber Barons” and how they spurred the economy. As AY cited:

    “1) Carnegie,
    2) Rockefeller,
    3) Vanderbilt,
    4) Pinkerton….”

    To name a few, all received government assistance in becoming wealthy and there were too many more of the “business elite” to list here.

  2. Rafflaw: “That is what the Republicans o best” and Blouise: “They can’t win on numbers alone so other means must be in place.”

    I have a very simple view of most things, America = democracy = one citizen, one vote + the Bill of Rights. When I start getting all caught up the subtleties and machinations of politics I just have to take a breath and measure what’s going on against my simple, almost reductio ad absurdum view of things.

    I think it’s a good way to view some things, the nature of our country for instance. No one ever fought or died for a political subtlety; that’s not how we see things. People have died for one citizen, one vote and the inherent dignity and value of every person and their labor. People died to secure the vote, in Yorktown and later in Mississippi, they died for basic human dignity in Everett Washington and later in Monterrey, Mexico*.

    It’s very basic for me, people that want to steal your vote or your dignity are traitors. They are agents and parties of treason. They spit on the graves of patriots and steal the nations future. They’re fit only for banishment or the end of a rope. This being a civilized country I’ll settle for recalls and the rule of law to ferret these traitors out for punishment. But I gotta’ tell you, my faith in the rule of law is currently MIA and I’m not certain of finding it anytime soon.


  3. Maury 1, March 11, 2011 at 5:36 pm

    Mike Spindell:

    I have read a little history. And yes there were companies that depended on government support and favors. But there were also companies that did not. You are making a blanket statement and you are incorrect. Not all businesses of the time relied on governement subsidies and favors.

    1) Carnegie,
    2) Rockefeller,
    3) Vanderbilt,
    4) Pinkerton….

    Maury…what do they have in common….

  4. AY,

    Hey … I forgot … I’m sorry. My friends are here to play Scrabble, rather 1 is here and 2 more will be here in 10 minutes … next week ok?

  5. Maury 1, March 11, 2011 at 7:18 pm


    “Name a company that did not ever receive government support….Please …..I can’t wait to hear it…”

    give me your parameters and I will try and oblige.

    Do tell…I thought you said that Business’s don’t ever need government assistance….How about stealing oil….is that permissible…

  6. Side note … it has been suggested that what drove so many to declare for Democrats in the primary was the contest between Clinton and Obama.

    In the end Obama outpaced McCain … 51 percent to 47 percent in Ohio and in the well mixed (democrats/republicans/independents) Summit County it was 58% to 41% in favor of Obama.

    This is why Republicans have to suppress the vote in order to survive, they have no choice.

  7. Maury, Your affection for the last half of the 19th century is not misplaced but your argument is meaningless without historical context. Sit down and brace yourself: two words, transcontinental railroad.

    It opened up the entire country to trade and everywhere the rails went cities sprang up, often in anticipation. Between the reconstruction after the civil war (short-term wealth generation) and the transcontinental railroad (long-term wealth creation) the Gilded Age was born, and those stories about wealthy men in their clubs impressing each other by lighting cigars with 100$ bills are true. Transcontinental railway. What a thing.

    It was also the most massive Federally subsidized building project in history up to that point. The railroads couldn’t do it without Federal assistance and direct loans. The Federal government sold bonds (as did some states and cities) to raise much of the money and gave land grants, amounting to 1/10th the area of the United States in 1870, to the railroads.

    LOL. you just can’t use the last half of the 19th century as your business model unless you include and embrace big government- BIG government- as a crucial part of it.

    The Act that made it all possible:


  8. Lotta,

    “The Republicans have been taking a long view regarding voting and putting in place policies at the state level that will have an impact on Democratic voters.”

    Yes, you are correct … it is a well orchestrated strategy and one that must be faced head on. Republican actual numbers (registered voters)are dropping far more rapidly than Democrats. More and more republicans are now Independents.

    I’m going to use some figures from 2008 in Ohio (note that in Ohio one does not have to declare a party when registering but does have to do so when voting in the Primary).

    Almost three times as many Ohio voters have become Democrats as have become Republicans (summer 2008) since the summer before the last presidential election (2004) … this was determined by the number of registered voters who declared in the Primary. On the whole the figures show a three to one ratio … 3 democrats for every 1 republican.

    However that figure does not factor in the Independents who didn’t vote in the primary but did vote in the general.

    That’s just Ohio and the Republicans were hard at work to suppress that vote as news reports out of Cuyahoga County (Cleveland area) illustrated.

    Thus Republicans have a vested interest in impacting Democratic votes at the polls on a state by state basis. They can’t win on numbers alone so other means must be in place.

    Since my time in the League I have always been fascinated by the “engineering” of numbers and the manner in which all parties use the figures from Boards of Election.

  9. Lotta,
    That is what the Republicans o best. They can’t get enough people to agree with their corporate programs so they have to try to prevent legitimate voters from getting to the polls.

  10. Blouise at 2:35, Republicans have looming problems

    They are also taking steps to disenfranchise voters that tend to vote Democratic. College student voting rights are under assault and the burden of complying with voter ID laws including proof of citizenship fall most heavily on minorities and the poor. New voting requirement laws are on the table in over 30 states and that college students are targeted because the tend to vote Democratic is not even concealed:

    “New Hampshire’s new Republican state House speaker is pretty clear about what he thinks of college kids and how they vote. They’re “foolish,” Speaker William O’Brien said in a recent speech to a tea party group.

    “Voting as a liberal. That’s what kids do,” he added, his comments taped by a state Democratic Party staffer and posted on YouTube. Students lack “life experience,” and “they just vote their feelings.”

    New Hampshire House Republicans are pushing for new laws that would prohibit many college students from voting in the state – and effectively keep some from voting at all.”


    Part of the movement to restrict voting rights also challenges same-day registration.

    There is also the problem of a growing sentiment to restrict voting restoration to ex-felons and this comes on the heels of 12-15 years of reform in this area. Florida just imposed a 5 to 7 year waiting period on petitions for a restoration of voting rights. This IMO plays into the general trend to find ways to disenfranchise minorities. Black males are convicted of felonies more often than white males and drug laws are a tool of choice for putting black males in jail. This effectively takes and keeps minority men off the voter rolls and job rolls. The war on drugs was declared by Ronald Reagan when drug “crime” was decreasing in the US, not growing.

    From “Legal Scholar Michelle Alexander on “The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness” ”
    “And the results have been predictable. Millions of poor people of color have been rounded up for relatively minor nonviolent drug offenses. In fact, in 2005, four out of five drug arrests were for possession. Only one out of five were for sales. Most people in state prison for drug offenses have no history of violence or significant selling activity. And during the 1990s, the period of the greatest expansion of the drug war, nearly 80 percent of the increase in drug arrests were for marijuana possession, a drug now widely believed to be less harmful than alcohol or tobacco and at least as prevalent in middle-class and suburban white communities as it is in the ghetto. ”


    The war on drugs is not continued just because of the money, it’s also about it being a great tool for opression.

    The Republicans have been taking a long view regarding voting and putting in place policies at the state level that will have an impact on Democratic voters.

  11. Troll,

    Never mind … your reverent attitude towards those who possess the inhumanity of Robber Barons and your inability to grasp the examples set before you have revealed your own lack of same …

    I would suggest that rather than spending all your waking hours on a blog that you seek employment so that you may provide for those children you claim to have.

    Tah tah, daddy/mommy … it’s been kinda fun!

  12. Mike Appleton,

    Excellent and well-thought-out article … I have emailed the link to several people … thank you

  13. Anonymous:

    “Name a company that did not ever receive government support….Please …..I can’t wait to hear it…”

    give me your parameters and I will try and oblige.

  14. Blouise:

    please be more articulate, I have no idea what you said about the father of the Kochs.

    I would be happy to learn something, if I could figure out what it is you want me to learn.

    As far as milk goes? I did not feed it to my children, it was intended to put weight on a calf not for the nutrition of human children.

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