Wisconsin Responds to Governor Scott Walker’s attack on public employees and worker rights

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Carl Aniel speaks to Channel 27 at Governor Walker's mansion as approx. 70 picketers walk by. Click image for more.


Wednesday February 16

SEIU lists buses leaving from 17 Wisconsin locations for the Capitol

  • 10 a.m. Legislative Briefings at Masonic Temple, 301 Wisconsin Ave, Madison
  • 11 a.m. Lobby Visits, State Capitol
  • Noon Rally on Capitol Square
  • Tuesday – State Street Capitol Steps
  • Wednesday – King St. Capitol Entrance
  • 1 p.m. Resume Lobby Visits, State Capitol
  • 3:00 to 7:00 Candlelight Vigil, with speakers at 6:30.
Again, for those who cannot get out of school, there will be vigils at the Capitol Square both evenings from about 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. with speakers at 6:30 p.m. 

Free bus rides are being organized from several locations throughout the state More at WEAC

Fond du Lac – Feb. 16, 5-5:45PM Family vigil for Education at the home of Rep. Jeremy Thiesfeldt. Details forthcoming. See WEAC

Menomonee Falls - Feb 16, 4-5:30PM  Senator Alberta Darling’s district office  N88 W16621 Appleton Ave.

Rob Koenig in front of Governor Scott Walker's mansion in Madison, Wisconsin. Click the image to link to others.

Click “read more” to jump to the long list of past events, Sunday – Tuesday.

Sunday February 13

Madison

11AM Governor’s Mansion at 99 Cambridge Rd., Madison, WI MAP

1:00pm – 9:00pm State Capitol steps

Horicon 12 NOON TODAY, Sun. Feb 13 at 204 West Lake Street.

Green Bay TODAY Feb.13, 3pm, public workers/supporters meet @ BLUE, 1136 N. Military Ave. MAP for peaceful picketing and lobbying of representatives.

Monday February 14

Madison - Feb 14, 11:00 AM “Stand in Solidarity” at Concourse Hotel, Senate Rm. , 1 W. Dayton St., Madison, WI  Read more at Cognitive Dissonance

Madison - Feb 14, “I Heart UW” Rally, 11:30 AM at UW Union or 12 Noon at Capitol:  “Wear red and meet members of your UW-Madison community (and beyond) at 11.30am in front of the main entrance of Memorial Union on Langdon St. to march to the Capitol’s State St. side steps (look for the “Forward” statue – the female sculpture from the 1893 World’s Fair). Can’t make the march? Head directly to the Capitol (at the intersection of State, Mifflin, and Carroll) by 12pm to join up with the marchers. We will go into the Capitol’s rotunda together and then onwards to Governor Walker’s office to deliver our Valentines and message.” from facebook, organized by Young Progressives of Wisconsin

Milwaukee - Feb. 14, 10:30am – 1:30 pm, Milwaukee Rally for worker and student rights, organized by the Milwaukee Graduate Assistants Association, Spaights Plaza on the UWM campus

Appleton - Monday, February 14 “Flashlight Vigil” Fox Valley Tech  · 4:30pm – 5:30pm, Hwy 41 Pedestrian Bridge facebook page

Eau Claire - Monday, February 14 · 6:30pm – 9:30pm,  South Middle School in Eau Claire. ECAE and other labor groups are organizing it. WCEA members are being notified. facebook page

Janesville – Monday, February 14 · 5:00pm – 8:00pm, Craig High School, 401 S. Randall, Janesville, WI facebook page

Tuesday & Wednesday – Madison, Wisconsin will be overflowing with individuals peacefully assembling to lobby and picket on our capitol’s square.

Tuesday February 15

Madison – 5pm Feb. 15,  Debate and forum at the Orpheum Theater, State Street, Madison, Wisconsin. The Public, Scott Walker and all legislators are welcome. Host: South Central Federation of Labor.

Andrea Stumpf and her family picketed today. Click image for more.

SEIU lists buses leaving from 17 Wisconsin locations for the Capitol

  • 10 a.m. Legislative Briefings at Masonic Temple, 301 Wisconsin Ave, Madison
  • 11 a.m. Lobby Visits, State Capitol
  • Noon Rally on Capitol Square
  • Tuesday – State Street Capitol Steps
  • Wednesday – King St. Capitol Entrance
  • 1 p.m. Resume Lobby Visits, State Capitol
  • 3:00 to 7:00 p.m. Candlelight Vigil with speakers at 6:30.
Again, for those who cannot get out of school, there will be vigils at the Capitol Square both evenings from about 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. with speakers at 6:30 p.m. 

Free bus rides are being organized from several locations throughout the state. Info from WEAC

Baldwin – Feb. 15, 1PM departure to rally at John Murtha’s office in Baldwin. Bus leaves from Menomonie’s WCEA Building 105 21st St. North, at 1PM from UppityWis.org

Baraboo – Feb 15, 4:30PM Vigil to stop the Walker budget repair bill, Sauk County Courthouse.

Fond du Lac – Feb 15, 5pm-5:45pm Vigil for Education at Senator Randy Hopper’s Business

Green Bay Feb 15, Time is T.B.D. Picketing Kleefisch at NWTC on Tuesday afternoon  Update will be HERE.

La Crosse – Feb 15, 7pm Flashlight Rally at Riverside Park.  More info on facebook

Marinette - Feb 15, 4:30 to 6:30PM Rally at the courthouse

Wauwatosa-Brookfield – Feb. 15 5:30PM-6:30PM  Candle light vigil/picket in front of Governor Scott Walker’s last known place of residence in Milwaukee County. Gather 5:15 – 5:30 at Wisconsin State AFL-CIO Office, 6333 W. Bluemound Road.
5:45 PM Walk to 520 N. 68th Street   from facebook

Sturgeon Bay –  Feb. 15, 4:30PM, County Government Building on Nebraska St.

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  55 comments for “Wisconsin Responds to Governor Scott Walker’s attack on public employees and worker rights

  1. jopf
    March 6, 2011 at 12:32 am

    Thank you to all of you brave people who are standing up for all of our rights. I think Walker should be held accountable. I think it is just lousy the way he started out his governorship. He came in with a my way or no way attitude with some kind of prejudice against public union workers. In fact what he is doing is very discriminatory. It cannot be constitutional to pick one group of people and lay the entire burden on them. Actually, what he is doing, is he is making the taxpaying public union workers pay for the tax breaks to the rich without any representation from them. Sounds like taxation without representation to me. He has torn our state apart. There are family and friends fighting amongst themselves because of this man. Surly, that cannot be something that we as a State have to tolerate. He must be held accountable for the harm he has and is causing our State. In fact if one looks closely at the word treason we find it means: 1. the offense of acting to overthrow one’s government or to harm or kill its sovereign. 2. a violation of allegiance to one’s sovereign or to one’s state. I think it is important we find where his allegiance lies. His swift blitzkrieg like take over smells and it certainly is not democracy. There must be some legal remedy we can take as concerned citizens of our State to stop this madness, to stop this takeover and to stop his unconstitutional ways.

  2. Meg
    March 5, 2011 at 11:49 pm

    I only wish Scot Walker could be recalled or impeached immediately before he does even more damage to WI citizens including our children. I won’t hold my breath for Walker’s new job opportunities he promised during his campaign. I believe I would be very dead. So far he has ruined Wisconsin’s chance for high speed rail, a better education system for our children, & a cleaner state by having a good recycling program. Not even 2 months after he became governor, he has put Wisconsin back to the 50s or even farther back. Those that voted for him & praise him only need to wait awhile longer & they will also suffer from this insane, unintelligent governing.

  3. Kay
    February 20, 2011 at 11:01 pm

    My husband and I have been fortunate to be in an agricultural farming operation in Wisconsin for the past 30+ years and we employ, on average, 33 people. We provide a generous salary package with annual guaranteed pay raises, health insurance coverage, retirement and generous profit sharing plans, paid sick leave and personal time off days ,most weekends off and holidays off and housing for four key employees. We provide these benefits with no Unions involved and we do so to attract top level performing individuals whom we trust and can get the job done. Attracting and retaining quality employees is our goal and we do so without the Union. So I ask those of you who feel the need to retain your Union-what do they do for you? I agree that when the Unions were formed many years ago there was the need but today does your Union really represent your needs and desires as individuals in the workplace? It is my understanding the Unions dues are costly and are paid by employer deduction. If the state taxpayers can no longer afford to fund your benefits will your Union? Where does your Union spend your dollars? Please understand that I am not trying to be argumentative-I simply don’t know the answers and I hope those of you supporting your Union do and can educate me….

  4. Janna
    February 20, 2011 at 3:39 pm

    This is a sorry time in American history and democracy. We need collective bargaining rights and a voice. The reason Unions began was because the working class was being exploited.

    The trade union, through its leadership, bargains with the employer on behalf of union members (rank and file[1] members) and negotiates labor contracts (collective bargaining) with employers. This may include the negotiation of wages, work rules, complaint procedures, rules governing hiring, firing and promotion of workers, benefits, workplace safety and policies. The agreements negotiated by the union leaders are binding on the rank and file members and the employer.
    What Scott Walker is proposing in Wisconsin will hurt the working class, middle and low-income families more than ever, the same working class has already lost jobs with a deep recession and union busting is on the rise. I have been out of work for a year and a half, after twenty- two years as a teacher in New York State. Restructuring allowed cuts and my position, as an art teacher is gone.
    We are watching other country move toward their people having rights as workers and citizens, we now have these same rights being whittled away right here in the United States, while Wall Street Executives collect bonuses, the rich get richer and the middle class loose their homes, savings and respect for politicians.
    I have watched as corrupt administrators have prospered through embezzlement, unethical coercion and manipulation. In my case I voiced a concern and even as a union member I ended up without a job and without recourse. This behavior will only increase without checks and balances for Union workers, as management has the opportunity to do as they please with whom the please. We are going backwards and are loosing ground; already having given concessions as prices rise and jobs are lost. Let those people making large salaries bare there fair share.
    Shame on Scott Walker and those who share his thinking, if anything should happen, it should be helping the poor working class to get jobs where they have the opportunity for collective bargaining and rules governing corporate exploitation of those making minimum wage.

  5. sue
    February 20, 2011 at 10:03 am

    I am on Gov. Walkers side. Most household are busted right now everyone’s broke at their own level. The increases in basic needs and necessities it’s going to get worse not better. I am a municiple employee. I work for a city not because I was looking for a free ride on the backs of the taxpayers but because it provided my with employment closer to home. I along with most federal, state and local government employees have been provided with generious benefit packages as terms of our employment. But I promise you most did not negociate those benefit packages during their hiring process they were already in place. I came to government employment from private industry were I left behind a benefit package that was very much the same that was over 20 years ago.

    As groups unionized, non-union employees piggbacked along and recieve the same basic benefit package. So teacher, police and firefighter unions secured benefit packages that spilled over into all other segements of state and local government workers and federal employees are the same. Even in a ‘Right to Work’ State the effect is there. There will have to be a restructuring of all entitlements, health benefits, retirement packages, tax structures, loans, mortgages, foreign aide etc.. we may survive this. There are many many services provided by govenrment that CAN be privatized, including what I do. I hate to see that happen as I, like anyone else have been concerened with me and mine. I have watched many a good man/woman loose their livelyhood over the collaspe of the housing market and subsequent turn downs in those servicing industries. Our neighborhhods are filled with for sale signs. Foreclosures are back up and with the reductions in federal spending that will occur. There will be a new crop of unemployed to take the place of the current unemployed as they leave the unemployment roles.

    I will certainly opt to pay toward my state retirement package and contribute more to my health insurance rather then see myself or others fellow employees loose their employment. I shoud like to mention that I along with the majority ‘gov’t workers’ have the oppertunity to contribute more than what our employer contributes to our retirment benefit. Not unlike the matching fund one may participate in, in the private sector. I chose to place that contrubuition in my own retirement account. As I have watched my government give my social security funds, my medicare funds and my taxes to anyone and everyone during my working years. I made the determination that they were mismanaging everyones taxes, social security etc. etc. by the time I was 24…… So I chose to manage a portion of contrubuition income on my own. So far it looks like I made the right choice. Should it get to the point where the States decide to just file bankrupsy to get out from under their debt then it’s gone. A few more public/private ventures, nice high speed rail, and a few more lawsuites should be all we will need to set the stone.

    So as you chastize all the greedy gov’t employees who are taking from the taxpayer whom work in the private sector try to remember I/we are taxpayer’s as well. I watch first hand, up close and personal everyday, the abuse of power, mismanagement of programs, misinterpertation of regulations and laws and the arrogance of the those in charge of something they have no skill sets for or just plain don’t give a crud about anymore. I also watch and participate in the other aspect that takes place. Located within the ranks there are groups of individuals whom perform services for people and business community by aiding them in weaving through the maze of rules and regulation set in place and taking them out the other side all the while making you think it’s standard operating procedure.

    I’ve determined the wealthy and the poor rule the rest of us, whom pay for all they recieve in profits with our sweat or are given from our paychecks. Everyone’s angry right now because as the middle class loose our job the funding bases are no longer their to maintain the entitlements and keeop the TARP and Palm Greasing and their buddies grant funding and everything other program we can’t do without. keep the poor from hounding them. They can only get stuff from us once we won’t be able to replace it but the wealthy, Man their won’t be a safe place left on earth for you guys…

  6. Rebecca Gavin
    February 20, 2011 at 7:27 am

    http://epi.3cdn.net/9e237c56096a8e4904_rkm6b9hn1.pdf This study shows that private sector workers in WI earn about 5% more, over all, than those in the public sector. To those who say public sector jobs are not full time….where on earth do you get that idea. I am a public worker in another state. We work full time and then some. You have no idea what it would be like in your state without the wide variety of State workers…prison guards, child abuse workers, nurses, teachers, even the clerks at the DMV. Thees are not made up or surplus jobs, they are essential to the functioning of your communities. Telling public sector workers to get a private sector job if they want to make more money is just stupid. Someone has to do these jobs and they deserve to be compensated fairly. The unions have already offered to concede the financial aspect of this conflict… it’s the collective bargaining that is the issue. The very survival of unions. Thank a union member for your 8 hour days, your weekends, and the fact you have sick leave, vacation, and any benefits at all. People died for that and more. Show some respect!

  7. really fed up
    February 20, 2011 at 3:52 am

    I do not believe that Walker is trying to “bust” the unions. If you read beyond the first paragraph of the report you are using to say he had a deficit when taking office you will clearly see that it states that the medical malpractice fund is owed $200 million dollars. That in itself wipes our your so called deficit. It further states the money owed to MN tax payments owed for the 2009 tax year on December 1, 2010 is $58.7 million with a daily interest of $4584. The interest is adding up at an incredible rate. Then there is the 2010 taxes to be paid which is probably close to the same! If you want to truly see what any teacher in this state is paid the information is located on the Appleton Post Crescent website using the DataMine search. You just need the teacher’s name, name of school and the county it is located and it will show you their salary and the amount of their benefit package. Remember the majority of benefits are paid by taxpayers and this is for nine months. I believe there is NO money from what I have seen. And collective bargaining is basically giving the teachers their way so there is no winning with that. All I know as the manager of two small business that have been hit hard and will probably be closed if the healthcare is not repealed. What is being done is really not any different than what was done in Washington D.C. with health care bill. But that is okay because it is what they thought was best which is the same as what is going on here. What Walker wants to encourage is SMALL business not these Mega corporation you abhore, please look into the budget report further and then let me know if you still think I’m wrong.

  8. Kay
    February 19, 2011 at 2:07 am

    I fully support Governor Scott Walker in his budget proposals. If one examines the finances of our State one can see that our State is on the verge of bankruptcy-as are many other States in the Union. Taxpayer dollars cannot continue to fund health insurance premiums and retirement benefits for the public sector of our economy and provide funding for the education of our children-when these dollars begin appraoching or exceeding the cost of education something needs to be changed. The private employment sector has been funding health insurance premiums and retirement benefits for years..be it through employer and/or employee contributions. Walker’s proposals are not an “Attack on collective bargaining”-which is merely an attempt to divert attention away from the real issue. If the Unions would have realized years ago that the State could not continue funding health insurance and retirement benefits ad infinitum our State’s economy would not be in the situation it finds itself. What is happening in Wisconsin is the beginning of what many States and Washington must address and deal with the difficult economic issues facing all Americans. Every citizen in this great country is going to have to make great financial sacrifices and change our way of thinking if our nation’s economy is going to turn around-that includes both the public and private sectors of employment.

    • February 19, 2011 at 2:24 am

      Kay, I appreciate you commenting here and being respectful. If you could comment with a link to what you read that backs up your #’s, I will look at it. I have read contrary information frm the Legislative Fiscal Bureau.

  9. Roots
    February 18, 2011 at 11:33 pm

    It turns out that Scott Walker and Wisconsin had a 121 million dollar surplus last month. Then Walker gave out 140 million to companies. After he gives the money away he then claims that he needs to jack the working people ie. police, firefighters, teachers, social workers etc. to get back the money. Classic Libertarian Teabagger. The fact that he is lying says everything about motives. WAKE UP SHEEPLE OF WISCONSIN! The Kock brothers love it when you trash your fellow citizens. Read the report yourselves.

    http://legis.wisconsin.gov/lfb/Misc/2011_01_31Vos&Darling.pdf

    • February 19, 2011 at 2:27 am

      Thank you for adding the link. On the word “sheeple”-I think that really puts your audience off. It’s just a little nicer than “dumbass”. We agree on the facts. But I just don’t like “sheeple”.

  10. Anonymous
    February 18, 2011 at 10:18 pm

    People who support this bill seem to focus on the wages/benefits portion of this bill. The bigger issue is the taking away of bargaining rights — this covers more than just $$$. By the way, for those of you who think teachers haven’t made concessions in the past, I worked in a school district in which we teachers gave up wage increases several times to keep our health insurance (I’m sure that my school district isn’t the only one in which this happened) — this was a concession, a compromise. However, we at least had a voice in choosing that compromise; if this bill passes, that voice will be silenced.

  11. Jane
    February 18, 2011 at 6:50 pm

    I understand that we have to cut costs and I am not a big fan of Unions, but why is Walker only going after certain unions here? If we are spending too much on public employees, why doesn’t Walker’s bill include all public employees? Can somebody answer a question for me…does Walker or any other elected officials pay any of their insurance costs or pensions costs? I tried to look on-line and couldn’t find anything.

  12. james
    February 18, 2011 at 6:36 pm

    I have no problem paying more, but why exclude fireman,policeman. Just think what we could save by having them pay more also. What about the rich in Wisconsin can they not pay more, but then there Republican’s and they need there tax breaks. This just needs to end, compromise, talk act like grownups, we don’t need a dictator ramming this down our throats.

  13. jopf
    February 18, 2011 at 4:36 pm

    Everyone, public union, private union and non union workers, should be very concerned over this. It is not about the money, pensions or benefits. The public union people were ready to make those concessions. It is about Walker and his cronies taking away our rights as US Citizens to collectively bargain. It is a right that many people have suffered and died for. If you want to make a comparison to another political figure who did this just read about Hitler. Read about how he and his cronies, once they got into power, came in and one of the first things they did was to bust the unions. We know where that took the world. Do you really think Walker and his cronies are going to stop here with taking away the average citizens rights. I do not think so. Once they start taking away rights and can get away with it they will keep going. He and the Republican Party have caused public union workers and non union workers to fight amongst themselves, with the non union workers making the public union workers out to be the enemy. Look deeper and closer because the real enemy is not the public union workers. It is Walker and his cronies who are the real enemy of the People. Anytime your rights are being thrown under the table it is cause for alarm by all of the People.

  14. jopf
    February 18, 2011 at 4:34 pm

    If the shoe fits wear it. He is doing what Hitler did as soon as he got into power, brake up the Unions. Put all his cronies in powerful position so only his will would be accomplished with no dissent plus he had his own SS to make sure the people would be silenced. Sound familiar.

  15. really fed up
    February 18, 2011 at 4:29 pm

    I am REALLY sick of our elected governor being refered to as Hitler!! These people’s history must have been MESSED up!! Don’t like what he is doing?? Leave go to the public sector or better use your higher than normal intellegence to start asmall business…then maybe you would see things differently. Oh and as I remember under Hitlers rule people didn’t have the right to decide their own fate. I don’t understand how these “educated” people comprehend simple economics. You can not have more going out than coming in or you end up with BIG problems. Get a grip and realize Walker is only trying to do what is best for the people at large not an isolated group! And shame on you for Democratic Senators for running away from the job you are being paid by all in WI to do…..or does WEAC write you a larger check???? That’s right they probably do!! God help us all!!

    • February 18, 2011 at 5:17 pm

      To “really fed up” – Thanks for the comment. I want to address you in a respectful but equally passionate way.
      I can agree with you on your 1st point. I do not like anybody being compared to Hitler unless their acts really reflect his horrific legacy. That’s not about Left/Right or Dem/Repub. That’s just being factual. People-do not reach for that “Hitler” namecalling. Show your education and use a few more words.
      On your point of “more coming out than going in” – this is a hard one. We all suffered this economic collapse. We all are angry at the banksters getting their massive bail-out w. no strings attached and essentially working the angles and loopholes until our housing collapse was inevitable. Finance rules the world right now. Corporations rule. Now the pain ripples through states, cities, neighborhoods. I read this winter that they were turning away 50 people per day at the Milwaukee homeless shelter. My sister said people have been living under bridges in Eau Claire. We never saw that before. We’ve got shared pain across the political bands. Now what to do. The way I see it, Walker is trying to divide the working people against each other and giving the goodies to his friends and large businesses. And some little things to small biz. Do you recall Reagan’s “trickle down theory”? I believe Walker and the Repubs are pushing the same line-let’s give these guys a hand-out and they’ll turn around and give us jobs and… I do not buy it. I do not buy it because my Republican dad was turned to the other side after he saw Reagan’s “trickle down” actions fail. I do not buy it because what biz does is take their hand-out and then ship their jobs overseas or wherever the goodies are best and they can pay meagerly with little regard for how that drains the people. I do not buy it because right now corporations are sitting on two trillion dollars in cash and liquid assets. Interesting…we’re not seeing that trickle down right NOW. Please tell me given THAT – why give them more?
      I’m not some Patriotic type, but that activity makes me want to say they are “UnAmerican”. Leadership requires looking at the hard needs of everybody. Citizens. Workers. You can’t keep on repeating “Open for Business” and have everybody ignore that Wisconsin had a budget surplus in January before Walker started with business giveaways-”the Fiscal Bureau determined that the state will end the year with a balance of $121.4 million.” So we’ve been lied to on this matter.
      Please note – that fiscal bureau is not a political body. Impartial. You can’t ignore that we have the most sound pension system in the country for its public employees. Do you think that I will trust Walker to not touch that after he guts the rights of the public unions who rightfully owns that?
      Wisconsin is for Wisconsin people. It’s not a hand-out drive-by for business. Enough. I have Wisconsin Progressive values. I am here. I’m fed up too. And I’m not going away.

  16. Anonymous
    February 18, 2011 at 3:51 pm

    Mamato2
    Welcome to the real world. I am sure your husband makes more than mine and he is in the private sector.
    We have 1-2 meals out a year, our entertainment is at home. We haven’t gone anywhere on vacation in over 10 yeears. Everything that you said we have been doing for years.

    (Fixed typing errors, I have an old crappy keyboard.)

  17. Anonymous
    February 18, 2011 at 2:27 pm

    Mamato2
    Welcome to the real world. I am sure your husband makes more than mine and he is in the pprivate sector.
    We have 1-2 meals out a year, our intertainment is at home. we haven’t gone anywhere on vacation in over 10 yeears. Everything that you said we have been doing for years.

  18. really fed up
    February 18, 2011 at 10:28 am

    I also support Governor Walker and his attempt to salvage the states economy. He was left with a huge whole by our previous governor who was in the pocket of the teachers union. Stealing money from the medical malpracice fund, not paying the tax dollars owed to Minnesota, ect. I have alot of interaction with state offices in my job andin my experience for the most part the quality of service stinks. Three letters we all dread DMV! You are actually lucky to ever speak with an individual. I’ve waited in these offices while they are making personal phone calls about weekend plans ect. Must be nice because there are alot of people who don’t have that luxury. Teachers raises should be given on a performance evaluation and maybe the great teachers would be the norm not the exception. Walker has been very clear that 6000 will lose their jobs if this doesn’t happen. The overwhelming sense of entitlement is sickening as they a willing to throw their co workers to the wolves so they can have more….when they already have more than most!!!

  19. tired of union complaints
    February 18, 2011 at 5:14 am

    Since when has a teacher, firefighter, police office, or any public employee provided any more of a benefit to society than the private sector workers? I am tired of the complaining and the emphasis on their sacrifices for “the children.” They went to school so they could become a teacher, etc. This was a conscious decision that they made. If they are so “underpaid” why is it that we continue to graduate record numbers of students with teaching degrees. Could it be that the benefits and 4 months off every year are too attractive to pass up? Just about every working person feels that they are underpaid. Deserve has nothing to do with it. Do baseball players deserve to make millions while your local wal-mart greeter makes minimum wage? No. But in a capitalist country the market sets our value to employers. I work for a community bank that has a difficult time competing for employees with the County Government and the School District. Why do you think that is? I support Gov. Walker and salute him for having the foresight to stop the runaway train before it is too late.

  20. jopf
    February 18, 2011 at 12:32 am

    I have to say I am very proud tonight of the way the Democrats and the 2 Republicans showed their solidarity to the working class of Wisconsin, to America and to the World. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you for keeping Democracy alive. I never thought I would see it but you have done it. There still are changes that have to be brought up and changed about the whole process of our Elected Officials.

  21. jopf
    February 17, 2011 at 11:31 pm

    Anonymous now you are talking. I say let us turn the table on these guys. They are getting to be way to expensive for us Taxpayers. I say cut their wages, benefits, pensions, some per diems and perks. Why should they be excluded. We should also cut the number of them we have. It is just getting to be too much. They really are not full time employees so they should be treated as and follow the rules as either Project Appointment or LTE. I am getting sick and tired of them trashing and taking away from the hard working class especially since we did not create this mess.

  22. Anonymous
    February 17, 2011 at 11:01 pm

    I think it would be a great idea if the Govenor and state senators and representatives took a pay cut and gave up their pensions altogether and paid for their health insurance.. How do they deserve a pension for serving the public? They should do their service and then get back to their real jobs like the rest of us and earn their benefits and pension!

  23. fred
    February 17, 2011 at 9:11 pm

    Scott Walker was elected and is doing the will of the people. Get a back bone and buck up.

    • February 17, 2011 at 10:47 pm

      I don’t even know what that “back bone” comment meant! You got me laughing there.
      And as far as I knew, his win wasn’t by enough to call it “the will of the people”.

  24. Mallard51
    February 17, 2011 at 7:10 pm

    Some people just don’t get it….Wisconsin is BROKE. USA is BROKE! You have to cut spending and yes it will hurt a little. Better to suffer a little now than have total economic collapse later! Quit passing debt to future generations! It isn’t fair.
    Keep up the good work Governor Walker and stand firm.

    • February 17, 2011 at 9:02 pm

      I will tell you in 20 different ways how and why I believe our Governor is a liar at this point in time, and at other points in his past. Thank you. That’s a future blog post.

  25. royce owens
    February 17, 2011 at 5:01 am

    remember that the republicans in congress is wanting to cut around 50000 job in the federal program that is going on now also so all i can say is god help us

  26. royce owens
    February 17, 2011 at 3:46 am

    80 percent of the voters voted for republicans and lots and lots of new republican governors what kdid u want the one in congress says so be it – why would u vote for some one then turn on him did u make a mistake what voters said was the republicans know how to do it – i am not talking about voters just enjoy the republicans

  27. jim weinstein
    February 17, 2011 at 3:39 am

    Wow! It is scary that these state workers also are responsible to teach our young children. My eyes have really been opened these past few years. It seems it is these greedy public sector unions and their government workers against us who pull the load. They keep saying how private sector jobs are better. THEN GO GET a private sector job you leeches! It is American you can do what you want. If you don’t like the pay do something else. Man god help our poor children being influenced by these selfish anti capitalist union government workers. Scary.

  28. Monica Wagner
    February 16, 2011 at 11:26 pm

    Shame on you. As a teacher, I would be more than happy to pay my insurance and pension in full…as soon as my salary is equal to the private sector. In a state where Master’s level educated adults are making $30,000 dollars a year, insurance and pension is all we have. Care for your educators like we care for your children, please.

  29. Free Thought
    February 16, 2011 at 8:14 pm

    And to this notion that the impact of the economy should be felt equally amongst both the private and public sector is ridiculous. What you are implying is that the private sector should have greater rights, with equal losses as the public sector, which grants an intuitively obvious lack of equality. Have you no understanding of the constitution? The equality granted by the constitution is granted in equal rights. It is your choice to work in the private sector, and reap the benefits or losses of this decision. Public sector workers are attracted by benefits and the security that is granted by the position. Get rid of all the public sector workers, which is what it seems Walker is trying to do, and see what an uneducated, sick, and ultimately unequal future you will be providing for the children and citizens of Wisconsin. Mke, you and seapuss could carpool together, leave my state.

  30. Free Thought
    February 16, 2011 at 8:05 pm

    “In the public sector, the employer is the taxpayer. The taxpayer is not a greedy, unscrupulous, exploitative robber baron.”
    Thank you Seapuss for that wonderful piece of literary excrement. Are the employees not taxpayers? Does Enron, or any other large business that has exploited American citizens for years not fall under your definition of ‘robber baron.’ The public sector absolutely has the same justification for unions as the private sector for one absolutely obvious reasons, they both consist of citizens, all of which have equal rights. Once you start robbing any citizen of their rights the government itself becomes unjust and corrupt. I guess this supposed god that you most likely worship would condone this type of immoral action as well, as long as the private sector can put money in the collection plate on Sunday, and the public sector is left to burn in hell, everything is ok right. You should have been aborted, move south.

  31. Mke
    February 16, 2011 at 7:27 pm

    I do fully support Scott Walker’s decision for the budget repair bill. Due to the current economy, many concessions have been made by private employees/employers to survive these hard times. Why not union workers as well? The budget deficit was not caused by Scott Walker but the previous elected state officials. Would you rather have layoffs than make some concessions to meet this deficit? Count your blessings as many others are employed because of the state of the current economy. Time to tighten your belts as well. Government needs to learn to stop spending money they don’t have and should not have to come back and raise taxes because of the over spending.

  32. Cori
    February 16, 2011 at 7:03 pm

    I think, that private sector workers have a right to feel that they are making all the sacrifices.Reality check though, even if your benefits have been decreased, you KNOW what they are. If this bill gets passed none of these workers have a clue what their benefits are or will be. Let’s be honest about the fact that it’s not going to be just about retirement or wages. How are any of these families suppose to know where their future is headed?

  33. Mamato2
    February 16, 2011 at 4:48 am

    The impact of Walker’s actions will go far beyond the private sector and will impact everyone in this state, including all of the folks salivating at the chance to screw over all of the “lazy” public employees.

    I am the wife of a public employee and our family of 4 depends on his income. An income which is already 4.8% lower (the value of benefits are included in that number) than an equivalent private sector job. My husband has not gotten a raise in the last three years. He has also taken a pay CUT through forced furlough days. Therefore, my family is already skating on the edge with a very tight budget. Now cut that by another 10%. And multiply this situation by THOUSANDS for all of the state workers impacted.

    Have you ever heard the saying, “sh*t flows downstream?”
    You should be worried if:
    you are a MECHANIC, because our oil changes will be spaced farther apart and those new tires that we need will have to wait;
    you are a RESTAURANTEUR, BARTENDER, WAITSTAFF, CHEF, COOK, BARRISTA or HOSTESS, because our once-every-three-month date night *may* become an annual event, there will be no more “picking up dinner on the way home”, and coffee will only come from my coffee pot at home;
    you are a CARPENTER, PLUMBER, ELECTRICIAN, ROOFER, or LANDSCAPE DESIGNER, because broken things on our house will get jimmy-rigged and house improvements will be halted until further notice;
    you are a REAL ESTATE AGENT, TITLE AGENT, or BANKER, because nothing jump-starts a sluggish housing market like a bloated “working poor” class;
    you sell anything in RETAIL, because, well, duh.
    you work in the ARTS, because we won’t be able to pay to see you or your art, even if it is really cool,
    you rely on donations for your NON-PROFIT, because there is no more ‘extra’ to pass along

    et cetera. et cetera, et cetera.

    This effects YOU too.

    solidarity.

  34. Anonymous
    February 16, 2011 at 3:15 am

    People need to realize that walker only wants them to pay their fair share like the rest of us working class whom put our own money into 401k plans and pay for medical insurance. No body should have a free ride like the union workers feel they should

  35. ham sandwich
    February 16, 2011 at 2:44 am

    Hmmm… how did Walker get voted in as Governor? Because the majority of Milwaukee wanted him the hell out of there!!!!!! I cannot tell you how many people have said they only voted for him just to get out. Well, that was a pretty stupid move on their part! (or maybe they where in a coma when they voted?) Now he’s governing the whole dang state! Maybe I wouldn’t have such a problem with giving up my benefits had Walker proposed this to EVERY state employee. We all have to contribute one way or another, but, no, the police force and firefighters are exempt….. Talk about playing favorites! I agree that we need to do something to help this deficit and evaluate better our spending as a state, but seriously…This is just not the way to do it. I think a monkey even knows that..

  36. Conlee Cox
    February 16, 2011 at 2:34 am

    I saw a commentor on channel 3 news tonight who hit it on the head. Walker had a past track record on anti union activities. Many of us were award of his anti union bashing feeling including myself. I did not vote for him. Its sad when we have a rich history in Madison Wi is where AFSCME was born many years ago and this is what we dealing with now. Walker appoints his ploitical favor in such as the lady to Head the DNR who didn’t even like the DNR but now she runs it. This is a sad state of affairs. Next we have the polical favor of the Fitzgerald dad getting the appointment of the Head of the State Patrol well if isn’t that cozy.I haven’t seen him create a single job yet but hope to snag or steel some from Ill. What a joke. I guess when you 100 to 200 million in the bank you don’t care about the average worker. I hope people sign on change.org on the recall petetion to remove him from wis which can be done after 1 year in office provided we get the numbers.We will keep up the pressure until we get him out or recall some State lawmakers as well. The one thing they understand is voting and recalls.

  37. One Stuck Wisconsin Student
    February 16, 2011 at 2:11 am

    Does Governor Walker not realize exactly how many people he hurts with this bill?

    This doesn’t just affect teachers, or UW faculty, or so many of the other people who are classified as state employees. This affects everyone who these people serve, especially the Wisconsin students in the public school system. When were we thought about?

    For every teacher that loses their right to collectively bargain, another 15-20 students lose the top notch schools we need to progress into the future, instead of sinking back into the past. By taking away that one fundamental right, Walker has now put way too much power on the shoulders of the school district. And that’s just not fair. Without teachers and other school employees having the right to collectively bargain, school districts have the power to do anything they feel like, including raising class sizes, lengthening or shortening school days or years, not giving teachers prep time during the day to prepare the excellent lesson plans deserved by students, and many other shortcuts that may save money in the short term, but have a detrimental effect on student’s futures.

    Why should the quality of my education depend so largely on which school district I live in? There is already far too much discrepancy between districts, the last thing we need is for broke school districts to start cutting costs by raising class size and number of classes taught in a day by teachers, while affluent districts can afford to keep these aspects the same as they have always been. In the long run, that will cause the best teachers to migrate to the most wealthy districts, because the benefits they will receive will be much better then if they were to stay in the districts that really need their help. What happens then? What happens when we deprive people in these poorer districts, mostly minorities and the poor, the chance for a decent education, equivalent to all other students in the state? When did Walker ever think about the long run?

    With the amount of teachers that will be either leaving, retiring, or simply quitting next year after the passing of this bill, districts will be forced to cut costs. That’s a guarantee. If my math teacher was to quit today, he could get a job at a private company that would pay him double his current salary. Isn’t that a scary thought? There’s a very limited supply of smart people, and the state needs to make teaching as attractive a job as they can, or they simply won’t get any new teachers. It won’t be long before they’re forced to stuff 40 kids in one room for an afternoon class, perhaps the seventh or eighth that teacher will have taught that day. It won’t be long before the best teachers simply pack up and pick a different, much higher paying profession in the private sector. It won’t be long before a kid from China beats me out of a job because they got a better education then I did.

    Thank God my time in the public school system is almost done with. Thank God I only have to stay in this sinking ship we call a school system for two more years. But I so pity those students younger then me, who, with the passing of this bill, will have to struggle to obtain the quality of education that I was guaranteed. I wish them luck against China and India, and against students from the other 49 states, for that matter, as they eventually join the search for jobs that, right now, are in extremely short supply.

  38. johnny walker
    February 16, 2011 at 2:00 am

    I support Scott Walker’s budget repair bill in full !!!

  39. themightylady
    February 15, 2011 at 11:48 pm

    Dear Falconsword and Seapuss….

    Where has your economic outrage been for the past 8 years of this war?

  40. scott
    February 15, 2011 at 11:28 pm

    gee- compare my wage as a state worker to equivalent in private sector and it will be pretty obvious who is paid more. We settle for less pay for better benefits. Does anyone want to look at that? Or does that defeat your arguements. Our contracts are public record. average of 1% pay increase over last 10 years. go ahead check it out. are’nt we gluttons?

  41. Ken Harms
    February 15, 2011 at 8:21 pm

    If the state is broke and has no resources to bargain over then why not just pay all public workers the minimum wage?

    In fact why not lower the minimum wage to make the state more “business friendly” and create more jobs? Without

    collective bargaining rights no worker has the power to demand anything. No public worker is “entitled” to anything except

    to leave their position if they don’t like the terms of their contract. What’s being promoted is a race to the bottom where a

    lower standard of living awaits even our lower middle class teachers. Don’t surrender your right to decide your own future.

  42. Seapuss
    February 15, 2011 at 7:46 pm

    Whatever justification there was for unions in the private sector simply NEVER existed in the public sector. In the public sector, the employer is the taxpayer. The taxpayer is not a greedy, unscrupulous, exploitative robber baron. Public sector unions have had a gun to the taxpayer’s head for the last 50 years, have a corrupt and incestuous relationship with the Democratic Party, have ruined our educational system, and have put us all heavily in debt. I say ENOUGH!!!!

    Thank God for Governor Walker!!

  43. JoAnn M Pfeifer
    February 15, 2011 at 4:45 pm

    Walker is wrong. There is no reason in the world why he has to break apart the Unions to balance the budget. He does not have the People’s best interest at heart. Is it right for any governor to come in and govern such as Walker is doing? I think not. He is causing serious harm to our whole state acting in this fashion. Why do he and his cronies want to abolish Collective Bargaining? It is not a bad thing. It is a good thing. It is a way to bring management and labor together peacefully thru voluntary discussions which the employer does with the trade unions. People have died for this right. It is a way to assure good and safe working conditions for hard working men and women. In fact the right to collectively bargain is recognized through international human rights conventions. In the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 23, it identifies the ability to organize trade unions as a fundamental human right. Also Item 2(a) in the International Labor Organization’s Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work identifies the “freedom of association and the effective recognition of the right to collective bargaining” as an essential right of workers. Another interesting fact from Canada: In a 2007 case, Facilities Subsector Bargaining Association v. British Columbia, the Supreme Court of Canada, noted these facts:
    “The right to bargain collectively with an employer enhances the human dignity, liberty and autonomy of workers by giving them the opportunity to influence the establishment of workplace rules and thereby gain some control over a major aspect of their lives, namely their work… Collective bargaining is not simply an instrument for pursuing external ends…rather [it] is intrinsically valuable as an experience in self-government… Collective bargaining permits workers to achieve a form of workplace democracy and to ensure the rule of law in the workplace. Workers gain a voice to influence the establishment of rules that control a major aspect of their lives.”
    Why when the rest of the world has finally caught up to our standards would we want to go backwards? With this antic and the others Walker has made reference to, he will surely do just that – take us backward instead of forward with vision.
    Resource: Wikipedia.

  44. Saint MR
    February 15, 2011 at 4:51 am

    Does Scott Walker not understand democracy? Governments should not work like big business. A good government must look after the least of us, especially those that educate, nurse, rescue and protect. What is he thinking? What a shame that money can buy elections and pervert hundreds of years of progress.

  45. Anonymous
    February 15, 2011 at 4:42 am

    only one way to stop , adolf walker….IMPEACH!

  46. February 15, 2011 at 1:31 am

    Yahoo Scott,

    Take away the bargaining rights and call in the guard to maintain your new order. Keep going, the rich get richer, and your just doing your part.

    Everybody else, if you’re not a multimillionaire business man, plan on supporting one.

    Do not rest until we are on par with Mississippi in quality of schools and government services.

    Governor Scott Mubarik to the rescue!

  47. Anonymous
    February 15, 2011 at 1:19 am

    Keep your children home and educate them yourself that would balance the budget.

  48. rachel
    February 14, 2011 at 9:43 pm

    As a state worker this is a shame. Scott walker ought to be ashamed. I am tired of people acting like state workers don’t pay taxes and have money coming out of their check just like everyone else.

  49. Laurie
    February 14, 2011 at 7:24 pm

    I appreciate that you are not sitting idly by and are giving teachers and public workers a voice. It is unfortunate that you have all become scapegoats for legislators mistakes. They waste money with ridiculous million dollar earmarks. They themselves live affluent lives. There is waste in many of the grants that are unnecessary. No one is looking at why health insurance is so high. My father worked in insurance for many years and it made him and most of the people he worked with VERY RICH. He had no college degree nor did most of the people he worked with. the company had huge expensive galas and they made trips to many places around the world paid for by the company. Where is the restrictions on them. I applaud the jobs you do and the lessons of freedom of speech you are teaching by protesting. We are still suppose to be a democratic free society. You are not whining you are just asking that your voices are not lost.

  50. Falconsword
    February 14, 2011 at 6:24 pm

    Grow up, we can’t afford you any more. And we won’t let you drag us down to the 5th level of financial hell. Take it like a grownup, or when the economy crashes entirely you’ll just starve with the rest of us.

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