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Pay no attention to the people behind the curtain

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

The Leader and the Leaker

by capper

Despite what one may think of his plan, Milwaukee mayor Tom Barrett is at least trying to make progress in regards to mass transit and the $91 million that has been sitting stagnant for the past eight years. On the other hand, County Executive Scott Walker has been pouting about wanting the money to bail out the Transit System that he has been systematically destroying over the past several years. Now, Barrett is basically telling Walker to either grow up or get out of the way. This is being a leader.

In contrast, Walker, the would-be governor, is still putting on blinders to anything but a tax freeze. Every budget year, Walker demands cuts from all county departments, so that he may have a single-planked platform to run on, if he can ever put together a successful campaign. This year is no different. The first department to announce the proposed cuts is the Parks and Public Works. Walker has done this before, with less than stellar results. But when it came to the time to admit it was a bad decision, he foisted the blame onto others. This is being a leaker.

Walker seems to keep forgetting that he was elected to manage Milwaukee County, and not to be a perpetual gubernatorial candidate. The duties he is supposed to be doing include balancing fiscal responsibility with maintaining a quality of life, not offering soundbites on local talk radio. If he can claim to have a $7 million surplus from last year, and is able to bail out the privately-operated Public Museum, surely he would be able to maintain the appropriate quality of life services that the County is supposed to be providing.

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