The fate of working people and education in America rests on Wisconsin Senators standing firm in their filibuster. Stay away, Wisconsin Senators. Your entire State and your entire nation will thank you.
Let’s not pretend this debate has anything to do with deficits.
1) The workers conceded and took a cut of 12%. Yet the Governor still persists on trying to make it illegal for them to collectively bargain ever again. Perhaps the Governor thinks “the Jungle” of 1890’s America or current Mexico is better than American today. But the vast majority of Americans support the functioning of the middle class the Governor aims to destroy.
2) The “Deficits Don’t Matter” national Republican Party, after running up a Pentagon bill of 120% over the last 10 years and insisting that billionaires each deserve a minimum of $30 million back from taxpayers, can’t afford 1/500 of the $60 billion annually lavished on the megamillionaires (who don’t need the money and won’t use it to help the economy) to make sure that Wisconsin still has competent teachers. By cutting aid to the States, the national Republican Party has forced States all across the country to raise taxes and to fire dedicated public servants. It’s a major reason the unemployment rate remains high. And now Republicans want to sacrifice our economy, just so their extremely rich donors get a wee bit richer. Except there’s not much middle-class wealth to sop up.
3) The Governor of Wisconsin just issued $140 million in new corporate tax breaks, approximately the same amount he is asking teachers to suffer. In essence, he is asking teachers to give up 1/8 of their wages to Wisconsin corporations. They agreed! And he still wants to punish them.
4) The Governor supports the collective bargaining right of any unions that endorse him (police, firefighters) while denying the collective bargaining of anyone who doesn’t. This is what leads his actions to a comparison to the corruption and cronyism of less democratic nations than ours.
5) Polls overwhelmingly show support for working people and against the Governor’s attempt to push teachers into poverty. 61% to 33% in the latest unbiased Gallup Poll. (The Republican’s Rasmussen “push poll” isn’t worth the paper it’s written on.) Wisconsin polls show overwhelming support of the People of Wisconsin for the Democrats and majorities disapproving both the Governor and the Republicans. The Democrats’ standing firm is not just right as a matter of ethics and economics. It’s right as a matter of politics.
6) The teachers and public servants of Wisconsin need to show the People of Wisconsin that they are valuable, that children do need an education. Every single other industrialized nation values its teachers. Only in America do we value high-rolling billionaire gamblers on Wall Street over the people that give our children a chance at the American Dream. The clear message to our children is that education does not matter, and they should never become teachers. They should become lobbyists instead. Because cronyism and corruption leads to billions, while helping kids learn leads to poverty. And then, with this clear Republican message, we wonder why American ingenuity and innovation declines.
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