Friday, March 18, 2011

Apocalypse in Wisconsin: The Age Corporate Feudalism Dawns


About that battle over public employee unions in Wisconsin, the governor's ture colors become more visible, fascist. His true prupose is just to destroy unions and move toward corporate fascism. The Teap Party stupidity sells out the state to corporate feudalism. Life Im America reduces to a dull tedious series of psychological and financial raping of all who are not rich and powerful.

The Nation:
feb 11, 11

John Nichols

Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker’s proposal to strip public employees of most collective bargaining rights, cut pay and gut benefits without any negotiation represents the most radical assault yet by the current crop of Republican governors on the rights of workers has inspired outrage in a historically progressive and pro-labor state.

With unions calling on members an allies to “fight back” against a “blatant power grab,” tensions are running so high that the governor, who took office in January, is threatening to call out the National Guard in case of industrial action by state, county and municipal employees. “Even if you don’t like unions,” says Rich Abelson, executive director of AFSCME Council 48, the union that represents Milwaukee County workers, “surely we all can agree that anti-freedom attacks that deny public employees the right to negotiate a fair contract…are outrageous and wrong.”

Even Republicans are unsettled, with a senior GOP legistator, state Senator Luther Olsen, describing the governor’s announcement a “radical” move that threatens “a lot of good working people.”

Walker never discussed ending collective bargaining during a campaign in which he promised to work across lines of partisanship and ideology to create jobs.

Instead, he has chosen to play political games.

The governor’s budget repair bill, which includes the plan to gut collective bargaining protections for public employees, does not seek to get the state’s fiscal house in order.

Rather, it is seeks a political goal: destroying public employee unions, which demand fair treatment of workers and hold governors of both parties to account when they seek to undermine public services and public education.

Former US Senator Russ Feingold decried the move, declaring that “Governor Walker’s request to the State Legislature to eliminate nearly all of the collective-bargaining rights for thousands of Wisconsin workers is big government at its worst. No private employer can do what the governor proposes, nor should it. For decades, Wisconsin has protected the rights of workers to collectively bargain with their employer on wages, benefits, workplace rules, and many other aspects of their employment. The governor is wrong to suggest that public workers are responsible for the state’s budget woes, and he is wrong to use that bogus excuse to strip them of rights that millions of other American workers have.”

Feingold’s reference to “American workers” is notable, as the attention to what happens in Wisconsin is about more than the wrangling between one governor and public employees in one state. If Walker succeeds, his strategy is all but sure to be adopted by other Republican governors in other states.

The claim in Wisconsin—as it has been nationally— is that overwhelming fiscal challenges require public employees to take a hit.

But the hit Walker proposes has sewn the seeds of political, social and economic instability in a state that has traditionally enjoyed good relations between government and unions.

The economic threat may well be the most significant especially at a time when Wisconsin needs to create jobs, as opposed to political fights.
by Plumbline89 March 10, 2011 1:41 PM EST
"Despite long claiming that the purpose of the bill was to balance the budget, the GOP stripped all fiscal provisions out of the bill."\

There you go. That says it all. Shep Smith over at that network that shall remain nameless was correct, this is 100% about breaking unions, period. It has not one speck of sand to do with anything related to the budget. Governors of both parties across the country have balanced their budgets without stooping to score some political points with their business donors. I can cut most congressional Republicans some slack most of the time, because they at least attempt to score cheap points with the voters form time to time. Not so with Mr. Walker. As the prank call so wonderfully exposed, he is out for one interest and one interest only. Those in business who gave him money. He does not represent the voters of his state, but rather an oligarchy of elite business interests who want to control the markets and the political class. He and those who aided him in the Statehouse need to be put on trial for their actions.

Read more:

The Nation
March 17,2011

Wisconsin Republican state Senators, fresh from passing draconian anti-labor and privatization legislation, jetted into Washington, DC, Wednesday night to collect tens of thousands of dollars in contributions from the one constituency group that approves of what Governor Scott Walker and his GOP allies are doing: corporate lobbyists.

But if Wisconsin Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald and Joint Finance Committee co-chair Alberta Darling thought they could get away from the mounting campaign to remove Republican state senators and shift control of the chamber to the Democrats—creating a check and balance on Walker—they were mistaken.

Outside the offices of the BGR Group—the “B” stands for Barbour, as in Mississippi Governor and potential GOP presidential candidate Haley—as many as 1,000 workers, students, union activists and allies filled the streets of downtown Washington. Many surged into the building where the senators met with lobbyists who paid as much a $5,000 to “host” the gathering to thank the Wisconsin Republicans.

The DC protesters chanted many of the same union slogans that have been heard at mass protests in Wisconsin. And they picked up a political slogan as well: “Recall!

Across Wisconsin, citizens are gathering petition signatures to force recall elections that could remove as many as eight GOP senators who backed the governor’s anti-union bill. If just three seats (including Darling’s) flip to the Democrats, Fitzgerald will no longer be majority leader and Walker’s agenda will suddenly face serious legislative hurdles.

Mocking the Tea Party rhetoric about gunplay and “Second Amendment Solutions,” one protester in DC held a sign that read: “We Don’t Reload, We Recall!”

The fact that Fitzgerald has made the linkage between the Senate vote for Walker’s bill and his party’s corporate benefactors, was not lost of those who gathered outside the BGR offices.

Jonathan Backer, who came to Washington from Kenosha, Wisconsin, hailed the protests in DC, saying, “It’s such a good representation of what’s wrong with our democracy right now. There’s so much corporate power in our democracy where literally seconds after one of the worst anti-labor decisions that’s ever happened in the Midwest, you’ve got a big fundraiser going on here, right here in DC. What we’re doing here is all about trying to fight for unions so there is a way to combat this corporate power going on in democracy right now.”

Former Wisconsin Senator Russ Feingold was more blunt:

“Today, Wednesday March 16th, Republican state senators from Wisconsin are in Washington, DC, attending a big fundraiser at the headquarters of a corporate lobbying firm. That’s less than one week after Republicans rammed through an anti-worker bill that polls showed was heavily opposed by Wisconsinites—but was heavily favored by corporate lobbyists,” said Feingold. “If your senator is Scott Fitzgerald of Juneau, Glenn Grothman of West Bend or Alberta Darling of River Hills, your senator is at the fundraiser. But no matter where you are in Wisconsin, your interests just got sold out to big corporate interests.”

also by John Nichols:

Monday, February 21, 2011

Look at Republican budget cuts


As predicted the Republicans are cutting all sorts pollution abatement, ecologically minded programs, energy related programs, thing that will get us out of fossil fuel use. I am willing to admit Obama has been less Sterling, FDR he's not. This is ridiculous.

also notice, WIC, Women with children that helps poor mothers with nutrition and neo natal care and so on.

according to National Journal
Wednesday, February 9, 2011 | 1:07 p.m.

“Never before has Congress undertaken a task of this magnitude,” said House Appropriations Chairman Harold Rogers, R-Ky., in a statement. “The cuts in this CR will represent the largest reduction in discretionary spending in the history of our nation.”

The spending bill will also include cuts to several of Congress’ sacred cows: a $379 million cut to NASA, a $224 million cut to Amtrak, and a $256 million cut in assistance to state and local law enforcement. The FBI would receive $74 million less than the president requested for it.

And that's just the start. The Treasury Department's budget would be reduced by $268 million. Funding for university agriculture research would drop by $246 million, and Rural Development Programs would decline $227 million.

The total spending cuts in the CR will top $74 billion, including $58 billion in non-security discretionary spending reductions.

House Republicans last year campaigned on reducing non-security discretionary spending to fiscal 2008 levels, a roughly $100 billion cut, and the CR is a down payment on that promise -- a point Rogers stressed in a presentation to the GOP caucus this morning.

“While making these cuts is hard, we have a unique opportunity to right our fiscal ship and begin to reduce our massive deficits and debt,” Rogers continued. “We have taken a wire brush to the discretionary budget and scoured every program to find real savings that are responsible and justifiable to the American people.”

“Make no mistake, these cuts are not low-hanging fruit,” Rogers said. “These cuts are real and will impact every District across the country -- including my own. As I have often said, every dollar we cut has a constituency, an industry, an association, and individual citizens who will disagree with us. But with this CR, we will respond to the millions of Americans who have called on this Congress to rein in spending to help our economy grow and our businesses create jobs.”

Here is the list of proposed cuts, all compared to President Obama’s FY11 budget request:

· Flood Control and Coastal Emergencies -$30M

· Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy -$899M

· Electricity Delivery and Energy Reliability -$49M

· Nuclear Energy -$169M

· Fossil Energy Research -$31M

· Clean Coal Technology -$18M

· Strategic Petroleum Reserve -$15M

· Energy Information Administration -$34M

· Office of Science under the Energy and water spending bill -$1.1B

· Power Marketing Administrations -$52M

· Department of Treasury -$675M

· Internal Revenue Service -$593M

· Treasury Forfeiture Fund -$338M

· GSA Federal Buildings Fund -$1.7B

· ONDCP -$69M

· International Trade Administration -$93M

· Economic Development Assistance -$16M

· Minority Business Development Agency -$2M

· National Institute of Standards and Technology -$186M

· NOAA -$336M

· National Drug Intelligence Center -$11M

· Law Enforcement Wireless Communications -$52M

· US Marshals Service -$10M

· FBI -$74M

· State and Local Law Enforcement Assistance -$256M

· Juvenile Justice -$2.3M

· COPS -$600M

· NASA -$379M

· NSF -$139M

· Legal Services Corporation -$75M

· EPA -$1.6B

· Food Safety and Inspection Services -$53M (FY10)

· Farm Service Agency -$201M

· Agriculture University Research -$246M

· Natural Resource Conservation Service -$46M

· Rural Development Programs -$237M

· WIC -$758M

· International Food Aid grants -$544M

· FDA -$220M

· Land and Water Conservation Fund -$348M

· National Archives and Record Service -$20M

· DOE Loan Guarantee Authority -$1.4B


· EPA GHG Reporting Registry -$9M

· USGS -$27M

· EPA Cap and Trade Technical Assistance -$5M

· EPA State and Local Air Quality Management -$25M

· Fish and Wildlife Service -$72M

· Smithsonian -$7.3M

· National Park Service -$51M

· Clean Water State Revolving Fund -$700M

· Drinking Water State Revolving Fund -$250M

· EPA Brownfields -$48M

· Forest Service -$38M

· National Endowment for the Arts -$6M

· National Endowment for the Humanities -$6M

· Job Training Programs -$2B

· Community Health Centers -$1.3B

· Maternal and Child Health Block Grants -$210M

· Family Planning -$327M

· Poison Control Centers -$27M

· CDC -$755M

· NIH -$1B

· Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services -$96M

· LIHEAP Contingency fund -$400M

· Community Services Block Grant -$405M

· High Speed Rail -$1B

· FAA Next Gen -$234M

· Amtrak -$224M

· HUD Community Development Fund -$530M

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Obama's New Budget Mixed


Obama's New Buget is a mixed grab bag of some good some bad. It's going to be portrayed as breaking the bank and raising spending. Actually it's tricky. Spending will go up.That has to be. It wont go up as much as it would without the cuts. He's leaving in things to help people who can't cope, to stimulate employment, tax incentives to business.

President Barack Obama has unveiled a multi trillion-dollar budget focused on creating jobs and reducing the nation’s high unemployment rate. The job focused budget would boost the deficit to a record-breaking $1.56 trillion, an increase of 5.7 percent for the current budget. It is also forecast that spending would rise another 3 percent in 2011 to $3.83 trillion. Much of the spending surge started in 2008 and reflects the cost of massive economic stimulus measures passed by Congress to deal with the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression. The surge in the deficits reflects not only the increased spending but also a big drop in tax revenues, reflecting the 7.2 million people who have lost jobs since the recession began and weaker corporate tax receipts.

Here are the key financial aspects of the proposed 2011 Budget.

- Extending tax cuts for businesses, including a $5,000 tax credit for hiring new workers this year, help for the unemployed and $25 billion more for cash-strapped state governments.

- Extension of the popular Making Work Pay middle-class tax breaks of $400 per individual and $800 per couple through 2011. They were due to expire after this year. The budget also proposes making $250 payments to Social Security recipients to bolster their finances in a year when they are not receiving the normal cost-of-living boost to their benefit checks because of low inflation.

- The budget assumes enactment of a comprehensive health care program, the issue that dominated the president’s first year in office. Passage of that proposal is currently stalled with Democrats trying to figure out how to cope with the loss of a key Democratic seat that gave them the 60 votes they needed to overcome a Republican filibuster.

- Federal support for elementary and high school education would get what the administration termed the biggest increase in history. The Pell Grant college tuition program which would see an increase of $17 billion to just under $35 billion, helping an additional 1 million students.

- A boost in taxes on the wealthiest Americans, families making more than $250,000 annually, by allowing the Bush tax cuts of 2001 and 2003 to expire. The provision also aims to reduce the rate at which these same households write-off itemized deductions.

boost taxes on the wealthiest, that's a campaign promise and one he's keeping, that's great. He doesn't cut Social Security or SSI but opts for the needed make for for the lack of cost of living adjustment.

O he's a commie, head for the hills! If only he was.