Monday, February 21, 2011

Union-Busting: What's Really Going On in Wisconsin

Unsurprising: Scott Walker, the Tea Partying, Koch brother-bank-rolled, Big Oil loving governor of Wisconsin lies about his intentions to crush unions, in order to starve the ONLY real money the Democratic Party has to compete (thanks to the failure of the Supreme Court in Citizen’s United) with the corporations underwriting his party—and his aspirations. Surprising: that he thought he could get away with his false “Wisconsin’s broke” claim.

As the protests at the State House in Madison make clear, fear-mongering union members isn’t easy.


Unions—public and private sector—make possible a middle class; without them there’d be no minimum wage, child labor laws, work-place safety laws, access to health insurance, or protection from discrimination and unjust firing.

Why do union members often vote Democrat? Because Democrats stand for the working class.

Why do union members (like the police and firefighters Walker sought to exempt as a strategy to divide the unions) stand together even when they don’t vote Democrat? Because whatever their other political beliefs, they know that fairness in conditions, wages, and benefits is the American way.

Bizarre, then, that the foot-soldiers of the Tea Party would counter protest, especially since Walker’s bill harms them: “the tax breaks and other goodies that Walker and the Republican legislature passed…dramatically increased the deficit” (

Walker’s Republicans are more interested in advantaging their wealthy patrons than in acting in the best interest of Wisconsin.

Ending the right to collective bargaining won’t close this gap.

What it will do is empower corporations to control wages and conditions, thereby widening the wealth-gap, further entrenching America Inc’s stranglehold on labor.

Walker’s bill would insure that “[the union’s] ability to bargain benefits for their members is reduced…their ability to collect dues, and thus spend money organizing members or lobbying the legislature, is undercut…workers have to vote the union back into existence every single year” (

Walker is Big-Corporation’s union-busting dream come true: “The Koch's PAC…helped Walker via a familiar…political maneuver designed to allow donors to skirt campaign finance limits. [They] gave $1 million to the Republican Governors Association, which in turn spent $65,000 on independent expenditures to support Walker” (

Who drove busloads of Tea Partiers to Madison? Koch.

How can folks be so suckered as to agitate against their own best interests and for those of corporatists who’d curtail their access to the American dream?

Plain old titillation.

As I write this, the insane Glenn Beck is busy on his chalkboards laying out a paranoid vision of an America given over by the unions to “radicals” and “Islamacists” who “bear the mark of the beast,” and whose leader, Barack HUSSAIN Obama, is preparing to deliver America to the infidel. It doesn’t matter that not a shred of evidence supports his beyond-nuts claims.

The Tea Partiers are turned on by the spectacle of the violent world FOX lavishes on them.

It’s either this, or they’re stupid.

Walker’s claims about budget shortfalls have been debunked, his real aims exposed.

Tea Party anti-union slogan: “I stand with Walker because I care about making sure the Koch brothers and their BFFs are happy. Real happy.”

Or: “Decent wages and working conditions? Hell no!”

Or (Beck): “Who needs collective bargaining when the end times are coming?!”

Can Governor Corbett cash in on Walker’s gambit? Only if Pennsylvanians would rather be suckered by paranoid conspiracy fantasies about how only Tea Party corporatists like Walker can save them from Communist/brown/Muslim/feminazi/environmental whacko union members.

Does anyone really believe this junk? Or do they just get off on the spectacle?

I wonder.

Wendy Lynne Lee (591 words)