Today, Tuesday, August 9, 2011, Wisconsin voters will face one of the most important political decisions of their lives. It will have an effect on the political life of the United States and it will definitely have an effect on the lives of the citizens of the Stat of Wisconsin
Three years ago, after 8 years of the Bush political regime which purported to have modeled itself after the old Reagan administration, we experienced the final crushing blow. In one year, the unemployment numbers doubled from about 7%, which had been creeping up since the end of the Clinton administration, to 10.2% by mid-2009, with numbers like 524,000 in December of 2008, and 760,000 in January of 2009…simply unheard of numbers of people being suddenly thrown out of work.
Retailers and restaurant chains soon began to feel the pinch of what were about one out of ten people suddenly and unexpectedly on unemployment and another one out of 20 who were looking for work full time because they were living on part-time income and barely surviving. We still live in those times, with only a slight improvement.
President Obama should have used his initial good will to create a massive jobs program that would have put people back to work and ended the Great Bush Recession, which is how this will be referred to in history books about the period. Instead, President Obama allowed the Republicans to knock down the effectiveness of his stimulus program..which still created over 2 million jobs…by making about one-third of the stimulus as tax breaks for the middle and upper class.
Tax breaks don’t help you if you are unemployed. Tax breaks are like pouring champagne into the rich person’s glass and hoping to catch some of the overflow for the middle and lower classes. In other words, tax breaks as stimulus are worthless in the best of times (the CBO definitely said that during a Republican administration) and and when large numbers of people are unemployed, they are meaningless.
But the President did create the stimulus and then the President began his long battle to end high health care costs. He won, but in the process, the huge, wealthy forces against him ($400 million spent on ads against health care reform by health insurers alone!) became stronger and created something new, a rag-tag group of demonstrators called the Tea Party.
Here’s how stupid they are. They marched against the President, complaining about government being too large and spending too much money and going too far into debt. Why is that stupid? Well, President Clinton had ended deficit spending, begun to pay down the debt, and left a government—if it had simply been run the same way that he had run it—would have created no more than the $5.6 trillion debt that he had inherited. So a Democratic President actually cut the spending and balanced the budget.
But we elected a stupid, arrogant President who became a stooge for speculators and crooks like ENRON and EXXON and the huge military contractors like Halliburton. He also became an advocate for everyone from the big credit card companies, who were raping the people with usurious 29 and 30% interest rates on money they borrowed for 1.5%! He also became an advocate for Wall Street speculators by basically evacuating the Securities Exchange Commission, putting a regulation-hating Republican Congressman in charge.
So the economy crashed because of all the speculation and because of no one watching the store. There are innumerable books about it and the villains are not obscure…Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rove, Cox, Paulson—every single book identifies the same people as having deliberately crashed he economy.
So here’s where the stupidity comes in. After the Republicans did all this…ruined the economy with two wars and with two tax cuts and with a $600 billion pay off to the pharmaceutical companies that the taxpayers, particularly elderly taxpayers are still paying for…the people of Wisconsin, in 2010 voted for Republicans.
The very people whose constituencies were not the people but the big oil companies who gave us $4.00 a gallon gasoline, big international manufacturers who sent jobs from Wisconsin to China, big pharmaceutical companies who had been raping us all with high drug prices—all these plus Wall Street and the big banks who would not loan money to small business….these are the Republicans that the people of Wisconsin voted in during the elections of 2010. Unbelievable.
Why would you vote for people who tried to crash the economy by not allowing the debt ceiling to be raised. The debt ceiling had to be raised. Imagine you call your credit card company and ask that your credit limit be raised because you were temporarily out of work and you added too much to your credit line. And they said…no, you need to pay any overage now. And you say, I can pay it but I am over so I need you not to cancel me until I get you a payment. And they say…no.
It is the same thing with our credit limit. Whether we pay off $2 trillion or $4 trillion or $10 trillion of the national debt, we still have to pay our bills. Just the idea that we might not has now reduced our bond ratings and that will cost us all collectively billions over the next several years. It will increase the cost of our national debt.
So here we go again. We had an ignoramus for President and he put us $13 trillion in debt and left President Obama (in other words, left YOU and ME, with a budget…because 14 million people are out of work….of an additional roughly $1 trillion in debt per year.
You see one political commercial after another, hear one lie after another. So if you are a Wisconsin voter, what can you believe? Well, you can believe the people who have been fighting for the people—your fellow citizens—whose unions have been disbanded, who have had their pay cut by $4,000 to $5,000 per year and who have been told that they no longer can bargain with government for better wages…only one person at a time versus the Governor and the State Legislature. How do you think that will turn out?
you need to focus on the people who are against the people who are for the major corporations. This is the way you have to vote. You need to vote against the Republicans because their tax breaks for the rich, their cuts to the incomes of average working families, their midnight, secret legislating about disbanding unions and making it more difficult to vote…these are all the kinds of tactics that totalitarian governments use.
Local Republicans are the same as national Republicans. That is clear now from what we know about the thing called ALEC, the national plan for Democratic governors to follow, which was written by people like Americans for Prosperity, which in turn is funded by oil and chemical barons, billionaires, who will be made to pay to clean up their toxic messes if Democrats are elected.
So why would you vote for a Republican who says that he wants to cut the national debt but votes to give billionaires and millionaires and others who make substantial income a tax cut…in other words…a reduction in government revenues…of $800 billion over two years. That tax cut could almost balance the budget this year.
If we spent $200 billion of that tax cut could bring down the deficit by close to half and create 5 million jobs that would jump start the economy and then we might need NO cuts. Why would it reduce the budget by so much? Because a huge part of the current deficit is unemployment and welfare benefits that you don’t pay to people who are employed. Not only that, but they pay some of that $200 billion back in taxes and create about one more job for every government job created. Those are facts.
So why would you vote for someone who is an obvious liar and someone who is doing his or her best to screw you while giving tax benefits to billionaires…many of whom say that they don’t want or need them?
How do you politically defeat 200,000 people when you are only 51,000 people? First, you divide the people in two. One group is the “private sector.” That would be doctors, lawyers, construction workers, cab drivers, waiters, telephone and cable company maintenance people. Average people.
Tell them that they are being screwed by their friends who are nurses, doctors, professors, teachers, firemen and cops. Tell them that those people are making huge amounts of money and that YOU Mr. Taxpayer…even though you can see in your daily life that these people live no better than you…YOU are paying for their excessive benefits and retirement.
So you split them. Now you only have 100,000 to worry about, plus some of those 100,000 will vote anyway so some will vote with you rather than stay home. But you take the voting rules and you change them so that people show up on voting day and they suddenly don’t have the right documentation…which they never needed at all before.
That cuts about 25,000. Then you run ads that say that the candidate is a crook, is an atheist, a homosexual, a sexual deviate, a welfare-loving, gun-regulating, baby-murdering Socialist. How can you do that? Are you kidding?
The current local…local…elections in Wisconsin will see $20 million of Right Wing corporate-funded commercials before it is through according to surveys of Right Wing political groups. They don’t even hide it because they think that Wisconsin voters…based on prior experience, the 2010 elections specifially…are too ignorant and too lazy to do anything about it.
Well, what about the national debt and the state debt? Isn’t that a problem? Of course it’s a problem, but you have been offered only one solution, a very carefully crafted solution. It is one crafted by a group called ALEC, and then passed on to Governor Walker and his Wisconsin Republican Party, all now Neocons. (“Neocon” denotes the take-no-prisoners, Right Wing, quasi-Fascist, corporate-lobbyist-pandering group that now controls the Republican Party.)
So who is ALEC? Well ALEC has been called by The Huffington Post: “The Behind the Scenes Player in the States’ Fight Against the Middle Class.” That should get your attention. First, they want to eliminate collective bargaining…and not only for public companies but also for private companies. In other words, they do not want to allow workers to organize against the owners…the millionaires and billionaires…at all. Second, they want to privatize education.
The information from ALEC tells a different story from the one they tell to the public. They are not interested in improving education…though they won’t publicly try to stop it. They want to eliminate the costs of public education. Once again….it is all about keeping taxes low on billionaires….who just happen to be the ones sponsoring ALEC. What a coincidence!
If you think your government isn’t being taken over by corporations consider this. ALEC has over 2,400 state legislators (including many in Wisconsin…ones up for election) who pay ALEC’s membership fee of $50 a year. This entitles them to corporate paid vacations, tickets to Broadway shows, child care and dinners in expensive restaurants…all paid for by ALEC’s corporate sponsors.
Those 2,400 ALEC members, lobbyist-pandering traitors to the middle class, representing about 30% of all state legislators…Neocon Republicans…don’t care about Wisconsin voters. They care about the benefits they get from these corporations and the pledges they make in return to work against the Middle Class.
Suffice to say, if you vote Republican, you deserve exactly what you get. You do not deserve any consideration from anyone anywhere else in the country. We all must read and study and analyze the people who ask for our votes. And we must see through the lies. If you cannot or will not, then you will lose the freedoms you most depend upon.