The night before Wisconsin’s recall election progressive activists gathered around the Capitol to “cleanse it of negative energy” and sing together in solidarity. The evening opened with songs, some of which were written specifically for the events, as lyric sheets were handed out to attendees. Attendees then practiced a meditational “Om” and then all pulled together to circle the Capitol building with their collective energy.
Tag Archives | Scott Walker
“People get really tired of having all the tough villains front-loaded against them and resent getting short changed on play time because some fat mouth-breather’s hogging it all with a stack of quarters that could knock out a Clydesdale. If that’s all on offer, can you blame folks for staying home?”
Games are the repositories of our culture’s most primal values. As ostensible objects of complete fancy, they (can) deftly sidestep at will many of the extraneous ambiguities that force us to compromise our deepest values and thus help give clearest expression to our highest ideals.
For starters, game consequences are not so final or existential as they are in real life. You’re typically given at least 3 initial ‘lives’ to perform strategy experiments and become comfortable with play options before you’re fatally croaked. And even then you’re usually offered the option to restart the game. You have an opportunity to weigh options with some level of maturity and develop a play style that suits you personally.… Read the rest
“Elections may be lost by failing to energize the base, but they are only won by charming non-ideological voters who form the majority. Milwaukee and Madison are the state’s most left-leaning cities, but in the eyes of Wisconsin’s rural and suburban majority, they are also the darkest pits of Babylonish whoredom.”
The wheels seem rapidly to be coming off the runaway freight train that was the effort to recall troubled Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker. Nearly 1,000,000 people affixed their names and addresses to a petition to initiate the unprecedented recall procedures against Walker. But as of late April, Walker is polling at least 5 % HIGHER than his most likely opponent, Milwaukee’s mayor, Tom Barrett. WTF?
Here is a brief recap of events since I last wrote about the Madison Uprising:
1. Walker appointees refused to cooperate with a Federal John Doe investigation into Republican campaign violations. To date several minions have been charged with felonies ranging from appropriation of public assets to promote Walker’s candidacy, to embezzlement of funds intended for the surviving families of veterans in the Afghan and Iraq conflicts, to enticing underage boys into sexual relationships over the internet. Walker made some attempts to distance himself from the actions underlings took on his behalf, but those were undermined by the revelation that he had retained legal counsel from a firm renowned for its specialty in defending against white collar criminal cases.… Read the rest
Other politicians can slash taxes for the rich while cutting funds for teachers and struggling families, but few can throw in some Mr. Burns-style symbolic nose-thumbing like the Wisconsin governor. Via Mother Jones:
Walker has made headlines again after he removed a painting (see right) depicting three Milwaukee children—one had been homeless, one from low-income family, and a third who had lost family members in a drunk-driving accident—from the Governor’s mansion.
The painting, hung over the mantel, was intended to remind state leaders of the people they represent. Scott Walker and his wife Tonette replaced it with a portrait of Old Abe, a Civil War-era bald eagle from Wisconsin.
Would you live in a tent to show that history repeats itself? Protesters opened ‘Walkerville’ tent city, much like the infamous ‘Hooverville’, in the middle of Madison on Saturday night. This is the most recent demonstration protesting against Governor Scott Walker’s budget plan. Dubuque Telegraph Herald reports:
Those against Gov. Scott Walker’s budget proposal are settling in for the long haul, pitching tents at Capitol Square.
WISC-TV reported Sunday that protesters are calling their tent city “Walkerville,” named after the “Hooverville” shantytowns set up during the Great Depression.
Overnight camping is being allowed along parts of Carroll and Mifflin streets. The protesters will have access to portable toilets and hand washing stations, and several businesses sell food in the area.
Protester Karen Tuerk said the budget is a war on working families and the middle class
[Continues at Dubuque Telegraph Herald]
Via Dystopia Diaries:
Some unexpected good news here: A Wisconsin judge has ruled that the passage of Governor Scott Walker’s aggressive union-busting bill’s, engineered late in the night without the statutorially required 24 hours notice or the quorum necessary for a budget bill, is a violation of the state’s open meetings law. An injunction is now in place to prevent the bill’s enforcement.
You may recall the raucuous buildup to the April 5th Wisconsin Supreme Court election which was widely seen as a referendum on that un-precedented (and now apparently un-lawful) powergrab, an Orwellian abuse of rhetoric and procedure whose only certain purpose was to destroy any group to politcally organize outside the orbit of his Koch brothers patrons. David Prosser, the Republican incumbent was and still is regarded as strongly in favour of Walker’s dubious scheme, whereas his opponent, Madison-based JoAnne Kloppenberg ran on the ticket of the Democratic party who not unnaturally opposed it.
But if the buildup was a barn-burner, the prolonged aftermath was distinctly anti-climactic. The 11th hour defection of one of Prosser’s campaign managers seemed to deal a heavy blow to the Republican’s judicial credibility. Lazy or naive commentators would have expected the hoary old chestnut about Wisconsin being the clean-government state, a la it’s Robert La Follette heritage, to come into play here and cast Prosser’s chances in doubt.… Read the rest
The madness surrounding Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker’s efforts to destroy trade unionism continues apace, but outsiders are likely to be deceived into thinking momentum of the Madison Uprising has been dissipated from its previous well-defined orbit. They couldn’t be more wrong — and the turnout for Wisconsin’s April 5th supreme court contest between Prosser (R) and Kloppenburg (D) will prove that.
Current reports from Madison consistently describe a hard core of about one to two dozen protestors haunting the capitol building these days. Some Right Wing supporters of the union-busting tactics have publicly taken courage from this decrease since March 11th, when Walker signed the contententious bill. That, however, would be to focus on the hole, rather than the doughnut, so to speak.
While massive 100+ person rallies like those that continued for 3+ weeks in the capitol building are hugely important for gathering momentum and mobilizing latent energies, they really only represent the tip of an ungodly horror being whipped up for Walker and his supporters in places where it will do some real damage — the home districts of Republican legislators. Here is but a brief sampling of highlights from the blog TMPDC:
… Read the rest
— The wife of Senator Randy Hopper (R-Fond du Lac) and their household help have signed petitions demanding Hopper’s recall in a very public way.
I’m sure you’ve already heard the news: Between roughtly 4:00pm and 6:30pm last night, Republican Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald stripped the union-busting provisions of Wisconsin’s notorious “Budget Repair Bill” into a stand-alone bill, which as an allegedly non-fiscal bill required a much smaller quorum to floor, and forcibly destroyed trade unionism in the state.
A vote in the assembly is scheduled for 11:00am local time today 10th March, but nobody seriously expects any significant defection within the heavy Republican majority.
Although exempted from the draconian provisions of the bill, it’s been clear for weeks that the police and their unions know that it is only a matter of time and opportunity until Walker attempts to destroy their political voice as well.
Clearly the next round of conflict will surround injunctions and constitutional challenges to this extraordinary bill, which surely will be legion. But Republican Walker’s fantastic incompetence and three-week public relations fiasco has provided more than enough evidence to prove that the measures were never intended to address fiscal issues, but solely to destroy the historically Democrat unions ability to organize politically.… Read the rest
The differences between Madison, Wisconsin and Tripoli, Libya should be obvious. The fact that Madison hasn’t floated away on a crimson tide of gore should be encouraging—horrors on that atavistic scale happen only where there exists not even the nominal right to redress majoritarian excesses through protest.
The contrast to America’s experience of 1968 is positive as well; I remind you that movement flamed out prematurely due to inexperience and lack of discipline. The image created in my mind by this phase of the Madison Uprising is more like that evoked by Edvard Munch’s “The Scream”—the silent edge of a rising shout.
The crowds in Madison seem to have leveled out at a steady 30,000-40,000 per day, according to most reports. That is still a pretty freakin’ huge # when put into context of the relatively sparse population of this section of Wisconsin and personal commitments being made by protesters in order to attend, in terms of time and money. All the more so when you consider the scanty number of counter-demonstrators that the dilettante Koch brothers have been able to scare up from out of state, even with literally billions of dollars at their disposal.… Read the rest
“There was madness in any direction, at any hour. You could strike sparks anywhere. There was a fantastic universal sense that whatever we were doing was right, that we were winning.” — Hunter S. Thompson, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas
Well, almost . . . I’m not too confident about defeating Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker’s junta in the near term. In fact I’m detecting a growing rumble that suggests the earth is about to crack open within the next week and swallow the Madison Uprising whole. However, two other points seem equally clear to me:
1.) If it does, it will likely drag the DNC to Hell along with it
2.) The DNC’s demise may not be all that great a loss for Richard Trumka and Jerry McEntee — or the American people.
I’m only one lone blogger, an overfed garden gnome with a bad haircut. I can’t possibly hope to convey to those outside of Wisconsin the full brutal glory and incendiary bolts of sheer lunacy roiling through the state right now. In part because I have heretofore lacked the resources and the contacts to be at the epicenter and in greater part because the whole awesome mess is so overwhelming that I think it’d be beyond the capability of a dedicated full-time team of bloggers to bring home the sublime scale of the thing.… Read the rest