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Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker’s autocratic attempt to abrogate the democratic right of public employees to bargain with their governmental bosses is not wearing well with the public. Recent polls show that a mere one-third of Wisconsinites favor his blatantly-political power play, and that if he had told voters in the last year’s election that he intended to do this, he would’ve lost. After only one month in office, Walker’s approval rating has plummeted, and he’s become a national poster boy for right-wing anti-union extremism – indeed, he’s so out of step that he’s even being jeered by democracy fighters in Egypt!
Yet, Walker is but one of a flock of far-right, corporate-crested Republican governors and congress critters who’re waging an all-out class war on unionized workers. It’s a shameful effort to bust the wage structure and legal protections that support America’s already-endangered middle class.
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In Washington, for example, loopy GOP leaders are out to abolish the legal mechanism through which workers can form a union and have their bargaining rights protected. Meanwhile, war-whooping Republican governors in Ohio, New Jersey, Indiana, and elsewhere are slashing the health care and pension benefits owed to public employees, blaming these middle-class workers for their states’ fiscal messes. But state budgets have been depleted by the economic crash caused by Wall Street greed and massive tax giveaways to wealthy elites – not by a firefighter’s pension or a teacher’s health plan.
And check out Nevada, where the Chamber of Commerce is even pushing to eliminate the minimum wage. This corporate-funded Republican assault is not about fiscal responsibility. The corporate powers intend nothing less than to dismantle the entire framework of America’s economic democracy and return us to the dark days of Robber Baron plutocracy. To the barricades, people!
“Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s standing in eroding, opponents say, citing poll,” http://www.chicagotribune.com/la-pn-wisconsin-union-20110223,0,7367439.story, February 22, 2011.
“Wisconsin Power Play,” The New York Times, February 21, 2011.
“Big Budget Cuts Add Up to Rage in Wisconsin,” The New York Times, February 17, 2011.
“Republicans bent on getting rid of unions,” Austin American Statesman, February 25, 2011.
“Christie Declares ‘New Normal’ in Proposing Tight Budget,” February 23, 2011.
“Bill seeks repeal of Nevada’s $8.25 minimum wage,” http://www.lasvegassun.com/news/2011/feb/16/bill-seeks-repeal-nevadas-825-minimum-wage/, February 16, 2011.