Thursday, March 10, 2011

All Things Wisconsin; The $104 Billion Slush Fund in Advance Appropriations in Obamacare writes: This morning, Wisconsin Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald said in a radio interview that President Obama's political team is directly involved in burgeoning efforts to recall Republican elected officials (emphasis on the word "elected," as in chosen by the people of Wisconsin in a democratic vote four months ago):
"There's many people that are beginning to believe this is a delay tactic by the Democrats in the Senate so that these recall elections can be organized by the Obama team out of Chicago, which they are, as we start to do the research on the people that have filed the petition," Fitzgerald told Newsradio 620 WTMJ's "Wisconsin's Morning News."
Read more:
Pitts Report writes: The Wisconsin Senate succeeded in voting Wednesday to strip nearly all collective bargaining rights from public workers, after Republicans discovered a way to bypass the chamber's missing Democrats and approve an explosive proposal that has rocked the state and unions nationwide
"In 30 minutes, 18 state Senators undid 50 years of civil rights in Wisconsin. Their disrespect for the people of Wisconsin and their rights is an outrage that will never be forgotten," said Democratic Senate Minority Leader Mark Miller. "Tonight, 18 Senate Republicans conspired to take government away from the people."  [Perhaps they should be considering the fact that elections have meaning, and that no one was bribed or threatened to achieve this vote.  It is democracy in action.  Soon we will be hearing stories of bus drivers earning $150,000, for instance.  The "civil rights" of which they speak are the ability to force workers to join the union and to force them to pay high dues, a lot of which go to the Democrat party.  The "rights" include the right to have taxpayers pay increases in their salaries far above the rate of inflation and their right to have taxpayers pay all their pensions and health care.  They are now being asked to contribute far less than non-union workers must contribute.  The union membership is not a majority of the workers in Wisconsin, though bused in union members from other states have made it seem so.  The dereliction of duty by the Democrat Senators who have been on the lam for three weeks must be addressed, for it is they who could be said to be taking government away from law-abiding people.]
National Review opines: There’s already a lot of crowing about the Republicans using an amended version of the bill to get around the 3/5 quorum needed on fiscal measures. But the Wisconsin legislature’s nonpartisan version of the CBO/CRS — the Legislative Fiscal Bureau — gave the maneuver a clean bill of health, and I’m sure a GOP lawyer or two checked the subsections and clauses twice and thrice for good measure.

Thanks to this bill — which doesn’t touch any of the civil service protections afforded public workers, nor any private-sector unions — public sector workers will have a choice over whether to join a union. Thanks to this bill, public workers who elect not to join a union won’t be forced to pay dues anyway. Thanks to this bill, elected officials won’t be negotiating away taxpayer dollars to the people who finance their campaigns. So, naturally, the Democrats call it the the undoing of fifty years of “civil rights.”
[Demonstrating what the unions fear they will lose is this story from New Jersey]:  The state’s largest teachers union last year spent $6.6 million on an ad campaign targeting Governor Christie’s cuts to education, according to a report issued by the Election Law Enforcement Commission Wednesday morning.
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- writes: The Wisconsin and Indiana Democratic lawmakers that have fled their states are undermining and delegitimizing elections and representative democracy. Of course, that’s not their goal. They just want to block Republican officials from passing specific legislation that they oppose. But that’s the end result of their actions.
If political leaders and groups don’t recognize the legitimacy of elections or elected officials, what is legitimate? In Madison, union protesters are chanting “This is what democracy looks like,” but that is not the case. Yes, political protests have a long and often proud history in this country. But if a sizable minority or even a majority-of-the moment decides the power of the street is more legitimate than elected officials, then we’re not America, we’re Thailand.

Despite all the media hype of a radical, dangerous Tea Party movement, millions of committed activists organized, made their voices heard and then took their case to the ballot box last November. But what happens if liberals refuse to accept that “elections have consequences” when “they” lose?
Going down a road where major political factions ignore elections that don’t go their way is dangerous. So it would be best if the AWOL legislators don’t succeed, regardless of merits of their policy positions. There will an opportunity in the next few election cycles for voters to change their minds and elect a new slate of representatives — or not. Because that’s how the system works. That’s what democracy looks like.
[Demonstrating once again the effectiveness of union leadership with its political donations, and more and more taxpayer dollars for educating our children, comes the following news from the AP]: The number of schools labeled as "failing" under the nation's No Child Left Behind Act could skyrocket dramatically this year, Education Secretary Arne Duncan said Wednesday.
The Department of Education estimates the percentage of schools not meeting yearly targets for their students' proficiency in in math and reading could jump from 37 to 82 percent as states raise standards in attempts to satisfy the law's mandates.
Politico writes: "We have to be ready” for protesters to try to interrupt the [Peter King Islam hearings on Capitol Hill], as is common during controversial panels, King said. “Obviously protesters will be removed and we’ll continue with the hearing.”
Despite the threats, King has pushed ahead in his determination to examine possible terrorist recruitment from within the U.S. Muslim community. “If we know a threat is there and I’m chairman of the committee in charge of homeland security, how can we not investigate it?” he said Thursday on “Don Imus in the Morning.”
In his opening remarks at the hearing, King plans to say that he is “well aware that the announcement of these hearings has generated considerable controversy and opposition.” But, he will add, “Congressional investigation of Muslim American radicalization is the logical response to the repeated and urgent warnings which the Obama administration has been making in recent months.”
The NY Post writes: Now, their supporters are organizing recall petitions for the governor and eight targeted Republican senators, and claim to already have reached 15 percent of the number of signatures they need. Yet the whole effort, at least as far as the governor is concerned, is illegal. Under Wisconsin law, public officials aren't subject to recall until one year into the term for which they were elected. But the man leading the drive to recall Walker, ex-Rep. David Obey, doesn't care: He argues that Walker's desire to roll back collective-bargaining rights of public-employee unions is "abusive" and thus justifies ignoring the law. Let's call this what it is: a campaign to nullify the 2010 election, by a sore-loser party that doesn't like the results.
It's now about whether we are to have an orderly democracy or legislative and executive anarchy, whether elections can be delegitimized and even overturned by the daily plebiscites of the polls, by the flouting of sacred oaths of office and by the trampling on the laws of the state.
It must stop. As President Obama liked to remind the GOP during the first two years of his administration, elections have consequences. From the Republican point of view, there was plenty not to like about Obama's program, including the stimulus and the health-care bill, but they voted anyway and took their lumps like grownups.
Big Government writes: Today former Congressman Ernest Istook testified before the House Energy and Commerce Health Subcommittee about the $105 billion slush fund in advance appropriations liberals tucked inside Obamacare. The $105 billion bypasses the traditional yearly budgeting process and is spread throughout the 2,700 page legislation. It took the Congressional Research Service (CRS) seven months to identify all the disparate funds and it was not until February (11 months after the bill passed) that all of the funds could be totaled up.
Rep. Michelle Bachmann (R-MN) has been beating the drum to raise awareness of this unprecedented level of advance spending. But the liberal media has been attacking her for calling it “hidden” funding. 
But more importantly, even in their attempted take down of Rep. Bachmann, PolitiFactFactCheck, and The Washington Post Fact Checker all confirm her underlying charge: the $105 billion exists."  [While declaring that anyone who read all 2700 pages of the bill knew of the multiple areas of funding, they totally ignore the fact some Democrats scoffed at the notion of reading the bill or weighing its constitutionality, and that Nancy Pelosi said that "we have to pass the bill to find out what's in it."  Exactly].

1 comment:

  1. old grizzled veteranMarch 10, 2011 at 10:02 AM

    Good background on the Wisconsin situation...glad they passed the measure...Of course, the Dems responses are so predictable, including Obama and his thug friends from Chicago and elsewhere trying to "organize things" so the Gov and other Republicans are disposed surprises there...