Mike Plaisted, the other day:
Just like the evisceration of personal injury law had nothing to do with job creation, the destruction of collective bargaining for public employees has nothing to do with the budget. It is rather a mad power grab by a ruling elite that will change any rule to make sure they win. It is also a continuation of the nationwide campaign by Republicans to destroy all what is left of the labor union movement on behalf of the wealthy corporations who pull their puppet strings and pay their bills.As I noted in comments yesterday, the Walker budget "repair" bill is hardly about the current budget at all. What does stopping UW professors from unionizing in the future have to do with this year's budget deficit? Or prohibiting limited-term employees hired in the future from receiving health insurance? Or changing the bargaining rules for contracts agreed to in the future?
Plaisted is not the only one to notice that the social contract--the one that used to say public-sector work would be less rewarding paycheck to paycheck but you'll not need to worry about your health or retirement--has been shredded. Even conservatives like ED Klain know that all this budget emergency talk is plain and simple cover for the last remaining battle in the class war that is nearly over, the rich having already won the private sector:
[W]e are led to believe that public sector wages should be brought in line with those in private sector (regardless of the skewed numbers used to come up with the difference in the first place), rather than demand that the corporate class boost private sector wages instead. No, we must drag everyone down rather than lift anyone but those at the very top up. [. . .]The gutting of the private-sector middle class, from health insurance to pensions to vacations, is not because our Galtian lords and masters are just barely scraping by themselves; indeed, recall that corporate profits are at an all-time high and tax rates, especially on corporations and the wealthy, are at generational lows.
Anyways, we can solve this problem by fully funding public pensions and using tax dollars (though only a small portion of a public pension is funded with tax dollars) to do so, or we can bust up the public unions, put everyone on a 401k and cut taxes for corporations and the top 1% of earners – then wait while that wealth just trickles on down. We can look at this issue as one in which public sector workers are paid too much, or one in which private sector workers are paid too little. We can say “the government is out of money” and then throw our hands in the air as if there’s just nothing left to be done except cut away at public employee benefits, or we can use the various other tools at our disposal to close the budget gap.
No. This has everything to do with war, and regular people have just about lost. Makes me wanna give up and move to Canada.
This is a crazy week for me, anyway, so I probably will just go Galt. Vote tomorrow, and whatever. See you.