The Wisconsin recall of Gov. Scott Walker failed. But because most mainstream political reporting is nearly 100% composed of useless trinkets and meaningless quotes, and little of the necessary context and an unvarnished attempt to tell it like it is, here’s what really happened.
Sensible people in Wisconsin bought into Walker’s sensible plan to fix a spending problem by cutting public pensions, which had grown out of control for teachers and civil servants (but the legislation did not cover police and firefighters, I believe).
These public pensions grew out of control because of too much union power, or “clout”, within state and local governments. Another way to phrase it, perhaps more accurately, is a lack of political will to stand up to unions within state and local government. In fact, let’s just call a spade a spade here: unions and political heavies in government made deals to help each other out: the unions provide the votes and endorsements and various forms of strong-arm tactics, and the politicians supply a trough of cash–paid for by the taxpayer–for unions to slurp from.
This is the best-kept secret in politics: union bosses work hand-in-hand with (almost exclusively) Democratic politicians to solidify each other’s power base at the expense of both the taxpayers and the union dues-paying members, whose dues roll straight into Democratic pockets at a 90%+ rate. It’s a money-laundering operation, frankly, and every union member ought to understand this.
Union bosses and their pals in state and local governments (in non-union states, obviously) essentially look at the taxpayer and see an ATM. In Wisconsin, they tried to walk up to that ATM — let’s call him “Fred” — and push the “withdrawal” button, and then enter 3-0-0-0-0-0-0-0-0-0 to get the 3 billion dollars they needed to balance the budget. Done! What could be easier?
Turns out, sensible people in Wisconsin didn’t care much for that idea. They recognize that it just does not scale or project into the future, and that it represents a long-term threat to the economy and health of the entire state. They also recognize that funding lavish retirements and free health care for government employees who already enjoy near 100% job security and, in many cases, a pretty decent paycheck is not a great way to spend public money.
And they also recognize that in just a year or so, Gov. Walker’s plan is already working, both creating net jobs and cutting huge deficits for the state and most/all local school districts.
And so, sensible people being sensible, they said “what’s not to like?”. And they voted “no” on the Walker recall.
The spending problem was caused by too much political clout for public employee unions, so the necessary and proper fix is to reduce that clout. Unions (especially union leadership) don’t like it, just like anybody in a position of power doesn’t like losing that power. But they have now lost two elections framed around exactly this issue, because Walker ran, and won, on cutting spending the first time.
The people spoke, twice, and that is how America works.
My dream is that someday we could get some sensible people in Illinois. Hahahahaha!!