30,000 protest against public sector union busting in Wisconsin

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Lord Palmerston
30,000 protest against public sector union busting in Wisconsin

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Lord Palmerston

Governor Scott Walker refuses to negotiate and attempts to eliminate collective bargaining rights for public sector workers.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SVKNvB8_LKk&feature=related

 

Le T Le T's picture

Wow, MSNBC is better than any Canadian MSM souce.

Unionist

Actually, a number of friends have mentioned that to me, but I wouldn't believe them - just on "principle". I'm going to check it out a little more regularly.

 

RosaL

I watch msnbc pretty regularly. I don't usually agree but it's better than most of what's out there. And every once in awhile, they interview someone who really is "on the left". The recently "let go" Keith Olbermann had some very satisfying rants about health care. I like Rachel Maddow, too. 

Unionist

Dumb question - is MSNBC available on TV? I'm afraid we watch virtually no TV, and what little we do is CBC or RDI.

 

RosaL

Unionist wrote:

Dumb question - is MSNBC available on TV? I'm afraid we watch virtually no TV, and what little we do is CBC or RDI.

 

Yep. I have it as part of a "news package". 

Bec.De.Corbin Bec.De.Corbin's picture

RosaL wrote:

The recently "let go" Keith Olbermann had some very satisfying rants about health care. I like Rachel Maddow, too. 

My satellite company boosted MSNBC up to another news package level a while back and I had to pay more to get those two, (now oneFrown). I was pissed, I really hate those fuckers (Direct TV that is), the only reason I put up with them is because my wife needs them to get Korean TV channels.

Bec.De.Corbin Bec.De.Corbin's picture

 

Here ya go... a pictures' worth a thousand words.

 

Check out more video...

 

Protesters March

More Americans taking it to the government Smile

NorthReport

I presume the state troopers have no jurisdiction in another state - correct?

Bec.De.Corbin Bec.De.Corbin's picture

NorthReport wrote:

I presume the state troopers have no jurisdiction in another state - correct?

Correct, they can only ask them to come back or relay messages. They can not detain or arrest them.

NorthReport

Sending the police to round up democratically-elected legislators just shows us to what extent the rich will go to crush the less privileged. Were they going to shoot them in they caught them in Wisconsin and they resisted? It is always the same, the rich against the poor, and it's helpful to know which side you are on.

milo204

democracy now has been covering this as well!

Bec.De.Corbin Bec.De.Corbin's picture

NorthReport wrote:

Sending the police to round up democratically-elected legislators just shows us to what extent the rich will go to crush the less privileged. Were they going to shoot them in they caught them in Wisconsin and they resisted? It is always the same, the rich against the poor, and it's helpful to know which side you are on.

Wisconsin state (and many other states in the USA) Senate rules and the state constitution say absent members can be compelled to appear, but it does not say how. That basically means if you're in state you're legally obligated to attend the state legislator when it's in session if you're a member. This laws main intention is to keep people, many of whom are in fact wealthy businessman or farmers, from being elected, collecting the salary from their office position and never or rarely showing up in the capital to really do anything... there's a word for that but I can't think of it right now and I'm too lazy to look it up. The down side of this law is it can also unfortunately be used in the manner we see here with the republicans, some of them Tea Partiers I think, trying to force a vote to break the unions.  

So yeah, it's the law, even the states Senators in hiding acknowledge that:   

Quote:
"We left the state so we were out of the reach of the Wisconsin state patrol, which has the authority to round us up and bring us back to the legislature," state Sen. Mark Miller told ABC's "Good Morning America" from an undisclosed location Friday.

It's also not the first time this has happened (state legislators fleeing a state to block a vote). And no, nobody got shot for resisting... So the answer to that question is no; the state police can't shot them for resisting. The assertion state police would shot state legislators is way over the top (don't make me start talking about polar bears againWink). Also consider this: many local police are unionized or want to be and they probably support these guys in this case. Why would they shoot them or even say they found them or tell the state police they know were they are?

The good news is it looks the protests are going to get bigger in support of these guys: it's a three day weekend with a national holiday here so more people are off work and will be heading to the state capitol. You can also bet there's going to be people from out of state there as well now. Look for a massive show of support Saturday and Sunday... (That should show you where I stand on this)

 

George Victor

It all demonstrates that there is still a weensy difference between Republican and Democrat political positions in some parts of the land of the free, BDC. Your polar bear comparison won't be necessary.  Vive la difference.

abnormal

NorthReport wrote:

Sending the police to round up democratically-elected legislators just shows us to what extent the rich will go to crush the less privileged. Were they going to shoot them in they caught them in Wisconsin and they resisted? It is always the same, the rich against the poor, and it's helpful to know which side you are on.

I have problems with the police being sent to bring back legislators that are AWOL but I have a bigger problem with them refusing to turn up and vote "NO".  If they're not willing to stand up for what they believe in they're part of the problem.  Not part of the solution.

Unionist

abnormal wrote:

I have problems with the police being sent to bring back legislators that are AWOL but I have a bigger problem with them refusing to turn up and vote "NO".

Just another U.S. law that we need to emulate here in Canada.

 

ElizaQ ElizaQ's picture

abnormal wrote:

NorthReport wrote:

Sending the police to round up democratically-elected legislators just shows us to what extent the rich will go to crush the less privileged. Were they going to shoot them in they caught them in Wisconsin and they resisted? It is always the same, the rich against the poor, and it's helpful to know which side you are on.

I have problems with the police being sent to bring back legislators that are AWOL but I have a bigger problem with them refusing to turn up and vote "NO".  If they're not willing to stand up for what they believe in they're part of the problem.  Not part of the solution.

 

  They are voting no.  It's a fillbuster type strategy coupled with the protests.    It's a really big NO, NO, NO.     They show up and their NO is meaningless it might as well be a  YES  and it's all over.  Pretty much the entire public sector union sector in the State, busted.   Game over.  Go home.  Shut up.  Sit down and take it.   But sure on principle they said 'no.'    That's what matters.  I'm sorry 80 years of progress just went down the toilet.  I did say my 'nay." 

 

I'm just surprised that they even have the guts to stand up like this.  At least they aren't going down without using all avenues to fight it.

 

 

 

 

georg-e

As far as "rich vs poor" goes, it is the public sector workers who are the rich ones with benefits and pensions paid for by the private sector workers who can only dream of such overly generous benefits and pensions. In effect, what we have here is a transfer of wealth from the poor (private sector) to the rich (public sector) and I am fundamentally opposed to it. I hope Rob Ford, in Toronto, stands up to the city unions.

al-Qa'bong

tick, tick, tick...

ElizaQ ElizaQ's picture

georg-e wrote:

As far as "rich vs poor" goes, it is the public sector workers who are the rich ones with benefits and pensions paid for by the private sector workers who can only dream of such overly generous benefits and pensions. In effect, what we have here is a transfer of wealth from the poor (private sector) to the rich (public sector) and I am fundamentally opposed to it. I hope Rob Ford, in Toronto, stands up to the city unions.

 

Have you actually bothered to look at what the reasons for this happening are?  Because they sure aren't what you are suggesting. 

I suppose assumptions and typical talking points are easier to spout.  Less need to think too much.

 

Anyways I'm sure I won't be the only one to suggest this, but you might want to read the policy and first principles  of the site you just signed up on or you won't be staying here long.  Unless this is some sort of drive-by troll barf.

Unionist

ElizaQ wrote:

Anyways I'm sure I won't be the only one to suggest this, but you might want to read the policy and first principles  of the site you just signed up on or you won't be staying here long.  Unless this is some sort of drive-by troll barf.

Actually, I was going to suggest that he jump into a boiling pool of putrid troll barf, but your suggestion seems more literary, so I'll go with that.

Back to the topic. It's unfortunate the U.S. trade union movement has been destroyed over the last 30 years. Public service workers will have a hard time fighting back alone. And in the United States of today, everyone under attack is essentially alone.

 

georg-e

I know one thing that is making me poorer and that is ever-increasing taxes. We need to rein in taxes and one way to do it is to rein in overly generous compensation for public sector employees.

If this site only wants to hear one side of the debate then so be it and I will be locked out.  But you really need to hear more than just the Amen Chorus.

ElizaQ ElizaQ's picture

georg-e wrote:

I know one thing that is making me poorer and that is ever-increasing taxes. We need to rein in taxes and one way to do it is to rein in overly generous compensation for public sector employees.

If this site only wants to hear one side of the debate then so be it and I will be locked out.  But you really need to hear more than just the Amen Chorus.

 

Why assume that people on this site only hear one side of the debate?  You're apparent side, as misinformed as it appears it is if your any example of it,  gets lots and lots of play in all sorts of places.   Some people that post here actually go to more places then just here too.  I know, I know  it must be an incredible thing to comprehend but it does happen. 

Thank you for your concern for the site's well being though.   Your compassion has been duly noted.  

 

georg-e

"Why assume people on this site only hear one side of the debate?"

Just look all the comments posted and tell me if there is more than one side being represented here.

The left was in full control of Toronto City Hall and they managed to alienate the majority of Torontonians with their wild spending. The union movement is doing a good job at alienating the middle class and, without its support, the union movement is going to wither away. Why do you think unions are fading away everywhere except the public sector? The only reason they thrive in the public sector is because of gutless politicians.

ElizaQ ElizaQ's picture

georg-e wrote:

"Why assume people on this site only hear one side of the debate?"

Just look all the comments posted and tell me if there is more than one side being represented here.

 

You missed the point of my comment.

George Victor

georg-e wrote:

"Why assume people on this site only hear one side of the debate?"

Just look all the comments posted and tell me if there is more than one side being represented here.

The left was in full control of Toronto City Hall and they managed to alienate the majority of Torontonians with their wild spending. The union movement is doing a good job at alienating the middle class and, without its support, the union movement is going to wither away. Why do you think unions are fading away everywhere except the public sector? The only reason they thrive in the public sector is because of gutless politicians.

Have you any idea, georg-e why unions in private industry have been decimated since the 70s?  Have you any idea why the middle class generally, has been moving toward the vanishing point in the same period? Do you have any idea why the lower-tax crowd has been so successful in gaining power over the same period...and look at what it has done to the fiscal situation in every goddam municipality and state in the U.S....not to mention the federal government.

Geez, georg-e , you are giving us a bad name!

georg-e

"Geez, georg-e, you are giving us a bad name!"

That is funny! LOL.

In 1986, when I bought my house in Toronto, the monthly city tax bill was $136. There were no extra taxes like garbage fees, land transfer taxes etc. Garbage was picked up twice a week with no limits on the amount put out. Fast forward to 2011 and the monthly tax bill is $300, with all kinds of extra fees and garbage picked up once every two weeks.

http://www.usinflationcalculator.com/

 Admittedly a US site but it is what turned up on a google search and the inflation rate from 1986 to 2011 is 100.9%. As you can see, taxes have been skyrocketing and service has been deteriorating. Do you think the average citizen is going to be happy with this state of affairs? Does my example prove that the city has a spending problem? It does to me. You will probably get the same results if you used the total city budget figures from 1986 and 2011. So don't tell me the city has a revenue problem.

 Half of the Toronto garbage pick up is going to be privatized, no matter how much Local 416 huffs and puffs. Are you really going to get the citizens on your side if you make them wait for hours at transfer stations (last garbage strike) when you are only supposed to delay them by five to ten minutes? Local 416 has only itself to blame for losing their monopoly on garbage.

 TTC might be declared essential if the province agrees. Do you think withdrawing your services at 10pm, with no warning, will get citizens on your side?

 Unions have no one to blame but themselves.

George Victor

g. Victor: "Have you any idea, georg-e why unions in private industry have been decimated since the 70s?  Have you any idea why the middle class generally, has been moving toward the vanishing point in the same period? Do you have any idea why the lower-tax crowd has been so successful in gaining power over the same period...and look at what it has done to the fiscal situation in every goddam municipality and state in the U.S....not to mention the federal government."

 

You have no explanation for these historical developments, right, g-e? No parallel economic occurences giving mobility to corporations and international trade? No arrival of an economic imperative, no disappearance of loyalty to a given business listed on the market, or place? Nada? It's just those dumb union folk?

You don't realize, g-e, just how nicely you fit into the changes underway - help explain the dilemma of working folk, everywhere.

 

RevolutionPlease RevolutionPlease's picture

George-e, cry us a river.  I guarantee your house value has likely tripled your tax increase.  Wealth creation costs money, you can't have it all for free my friend.

 

These unions you mention, they really suck your money away, eh.  Did you know that the more unions you get rid of the more your own earnings are likely to erode?  How come you're not looking at the fatcats?  They're all behind the scene that the media won't present.  The lobbyists at city hall or the legislature.  How can they afford all the welfare for these real scammers?  Demonize them all you want, the people understand why we need them.

 

Solidarity...

 

 

georg-e

Well, George Victor, I just gave you some figures to show that the fiscal problems faced by governments (I dealt with Toronto because I am most familiar with it) is essentially of their own making - you cannot spend and spend and then not expect to go broke. There is only so much that taxpayers can pay, there is no bottomless well there.

I notice you made no effort to refute my figures and, instead, resorted to empty rhetoric.

As for the sorry state of private sector unions, you only need to look at UAW/CAW. They, just as much as incompetent management, are to blame for the sorry state of the North American Auto industry. If you extract more and more, year after year, eventually there is no money left for your primary functions e.g. GM ended up being more of a healthcare provider than an auto manufacturer. There is something wrong when GM's biggest expense was healthcare and not steel.

georg-e

RevolutionPlease wrote:
  Demonize them all you want, the people understand why we need them[/quote

Yes, that is why the people just threw out the pro-union Miller crowd at city hall.

As for my earnings, I am self-employed and I am not going to make any more money if my taxes increase a lot to pay for excessive wage increases. In fact, I will have less money left over.

NorthReport

Why is this clown still here?

George Victor

georg-e wrote:

Well, George Victor, I just gave you some figures to show that the fiscal problems faced by governments (I dealt with Toronto because I am most familiar with it) is essentially of their own making - you cannot spend and spend and then not expect to go broke. There is only so much that taxpayers can pay, there is no bottomless well there.

I notice you made no effort to refute my figures and, instead, resorted to empty rhetoric.

As for the sorry state of private sector unions, you only need to look at UAW/CAW. They, just as much as incompetent management, are to blame for the sorry state of the North American Auto industry. If you extract more and more, year after year, eventually there is no money left for your primary functions e.g. GM ended up being more of a healthcare provider than an auto manufacturer. There is something wrong when GM's biggest expense was healthcare and not steel.

You have shown that there is inflation at work. We know that. But you refuse to get off the "unions did it" kick, even as the unions have been folding their tent over the same period. The world banking system just about shut down two years ago, when unions had only a fraction of the power they held in the early 70s. The standard of living of working stiffs has risen very little in the same period that we became dependent on credit cards. You would have no trouble with the tax bills - and the increase has been far steeper out here in the boonies - if you didn't pick up all those goodies on credit. You have been sucked into the machine and don't know what happend. Neither have you bothered to try to find out how it all came about. "Unions did it" pops up in what's left of your mind.

Either you are one goddam ignorant fella, unable to understand the question, or you find safety in the mantra of the right. And of course the excesses of finance capital have played no part in inflation, or the disparities of income that have grown over the period in question.  Have you no idea how close-minded you appear to any thinking constituency?

George Victor

NorthReport wrote:

Why is this clown still here?

Please, NR, we need to be reminded of the mindlessness and greed at work out there. Just how self-centered and dangerous it is...

RevolutionPlease RevolutionPlease's picture

Yep, for sure George.

 

He didn't respond to this:

 

Quote:

George-e, cry us a river.  I guarantee your house value has likely tripled your tax increase.  Wealth creation costs money, you can't have it all for free my friend.

 

 

RevolutionPlease RevolutionPlease's picture

George Victor wrote:

georg-e wrote:

Well, George Victor, I just gave you some figures to show that the fiscal problems faced by governments (I dealt with Toronto because I am most familiar with it) is essentially of their own making - you cannot spend and spend and then not expect to go broke. There is only so much that taxpayers can pay, there is no bottomless well there.

I notice you made no effort to refute my figures and, instead, resorted to empty rhetoric.

As for the sorry state of private sector unions, you only need to look at UAW/CAW. They, just as much as incompetent management, are to blame for the sorry state of the North American Auto industry. If you extract more and more, year after year, eventually there is no money left for your primary functions e.g. GM ended up being more of a healthcare provider than an auto manufacturer. There is something wrong when GM's biggest expense was healthcare and not steel.

You have shown that there is inflation at work. We know that. But you refuse to get off the "unions did it" kick, even as the unions have been folding their tent over the same period. The world banking system just about shut down two years ago, when unions had only a fraction of the power they held in the early 70s. The standard of living of working stiffs has risen very little in the same period that we became dependent on credit cards. You would have no trouble with the tax bills - and the increase has been far steeper out here in the boonies - if you didn't pick up all those goodies on credit. You have been sucked into the machine and don't know what happend. Neither have you bothered to try to find out how it all came about. "Unions did it" pops up in what's left of your mind.

Either you are one goddam ignorant fella, unable to understand the question, or you find safety in the mantra of the right. And of course the excesses of finance capital have played no part in inflation, or the disparities of income that have grown over the period in question.  Have you no idea how close-minded you appear to any thinking constituency?

 

Love you George!

NorthReport

The rich have a brilliant strategy. Make the middle class turn on the poor and vice versa. You see that way no one examines how much of a rip-off the wealthy are to a society. Bring back that inheritance tax - 10% across the board, and we would eventually eliminate many of the problems in our society.   

RevolutionPlease RevolutionPlease's picture

I'd go for 20% NR but that's just me.

NorthReport

Well that would indeed speed up the healing process RP. Laughing

RevolutionPlease RevolutionPlease's picture

How do they think they made it on their own???

NorthReport

Wisconsin Protests Set Up Delicate Dance Between Obama And Labor
Labor unions and the White House might not be in bed with each other, but they're definitely having make-up sex right now," the strategist emailed. "Maybe [things will improve] in the short term, but they're already ticked at him, and there isn't a single union hotel in Charlotte [the site of the 2012 convention.]"

NorthReport

If Obama wants Labour's backing in 2012 he needs to get over to Wisconsin lickety-split.

trippie

I love how some people here still have a glimmer of hope in any good coming from the Democrats.

trippie

This is another example of the working class findings it's voice.

 

Even thought the leaders of the left in America (Unions, Democrats) tried as best they could, over the last 30+ years, to side line the militancy of the working class, we still eventually find it.

 

So far, since the financial collapse and the trillion dollar give away tot he bank, we have seen the answer come from the working class in Iran, Greece, Italy, Spain, France, England, Tunisia, Egypt, Yemen, Iraq, Libya, Bahrain and now the USA. 

 

The USA will head further in this direction as the bourgeoisie try to make the working class pay for the bank bail outs. The Tea Party started to gain ground, but after the Senator got shot, they went down hill as people realized what they were about.

George Victor

trip: "Even thought the leaders of the left in America (Unions, Democrats) tried as best they could, over the last 30+ years, to side line the militancy of the working class, we still eventually find it."

 

It's exactly that type of economics-free, mindless attack on union leadership and the Democratic party that leaves folks nowhere to turn but to the equally mindless Teaparty. Pathetic.

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

Yeah, god forbid the rebellious workers should want to rid themselves of the parasites who repeatedly screw them and sell them out to the interests of the bosses. They should be grateful for the Democratic Party. It's the best they can ever possibly hope for, right George?

georg-e

Sorry, I have been away from my computer.

 

"Either you are one goddam ignorant fella, unable to understand the question, or you find safety in the mantra of the right. And of course the excesses of finance capital have played no part in inflation, or the disparities of income that have grown over the period in question.  Have you no idea how close-minded you appear to any thinking constituency? "

 

Right. Anybody who disagrees with the orthodoxy of this site is one goddam ignorant fella. Got it. If you say so.

 

 

He didn't respond to this:

Quote: 

George-e, cry us a river.  I guarantee your house value has likely tripled your tax increase.  Wealth creation costs money, you can't have it all for free my friend.

 

 

Property taxes were never designed to be an income redistribution tax. That is what income taxes are for. If I hire an electrician to do some work at my house, is he going to say "I am going to charge you more this time than what I charged you last year because I see that your house has gone up in value"? That is reasonable? Just because my house has gone up in value does not mean that my mill rate should go up. I would be very surprised if the mill rate had ever decreased in Toronto because house prices had dropped in some years.

 

"Yeah, god forbid the rebellious workers should want to rid themselves of the parasites who repeatedly screw them and sell them out to the interests of the bosses. They should be grateful for the Democratic Party. It's the best they can ever possibly hope for, right George?"

 

 

 

Canada and the US are free countries and nobody is forced to work anywhere where they are exploited. If public sector workers feel shortchanged, they are free to go work in the private sector. And we know that they will make lots of money because they are all rocket scientists, right?

 

al-Qa'bong

Many rocket scientists are public sector workers.

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

abnormal wrote:

I have problems with the police being sent to bring back legislators that are AWOL but I have a bigger problem with them refusing to turn up and vote "NO".  If they're not willing to stand up for what they believe in they're part of the problem.  Not part of the solution.

 

You do understand that, if they all turn up and vote, the right wins.  Refusing to turn up - thus denying quorum and making it impossible for the right to pass this odious legislation is the more effective means of resistance.

Do try to keep up.

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

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