The newly elected governor of Wisconsin, Scott Walker, has instantly shot to national fame because he is fearlessly staring down the government unions bankrupting his state. He is going eyeball to eyeball with them, refusing to do what every previous governor has done, which is negotiate huge (and fiscally impossible) pension and benefits packages, and then lie to everybody that it's all doable. "Don't worry! We'll find a way to pay for it all. In the meantime, your big donation is so welcome!" Governor Walker, like Governors Chris Christie, John Kasich, and Mitch Daniels, among others, are calling out this bankrupting, vote-buying scheme. Enough.
Of course, all hell is breaking loose in Wisconsin and elsewhere, because what is unfolding there is the truth and reality meeting past lies and corruption. This is quite literally a battle between good versus evil. Keep in mind: we are not attacking the rank and file union members. We are going after the union bosses and the Democrat pols who have kept them all fat, rich and happy. And re-elected. At the taxpayers' expense.
A few thoughts: 1. So much for the new, post-Tucson "civility." There are signs out there equating Governor Walker with Hitler and Mubarak and the Taliban. The unions have organized marches aoutside his home. This is escalating to the point of potential violence. I don't see the usual suspects on the Left, who were beside themselves over "right-wing rhetoric" post-Tucson, wringing their hands over any of this. Actually, to the contrary, they are egging on the demonstrators. I knew it was a classic Left-wing putsch when Jesse Jackson alighted on the scene. Figure Rev. Al will be there in 3, 2,1...
2. The situation is going to get worse because neither side is backing down. Governor Walker should NOT compromise at this point. In fact, he CAN'T compromise. There is NO MONEY. He's got nothing with which to negotiate. He's also become a political rock star over this stand-off with the union, eclipsing NJ Governor Chris Christie. (This may be why Christie is sending signals that he may form a presidential exploratory committee. Got to strike while the iron is hot, and some of these newer Governors are going for the union jugular, which previously had been Christie's turf. Christie may realize this is his moment before Walker and some of the others emerge as the GOP Flavor of the Month, or Year.) Walker is now a national figure. He's not going to blow it.
3. This is about money and power. Period. The unions have money and use it to buy power. The politicians have power and acquire it through union money. What Governor Walker is doing is upending the whole equation. No union boss is going to go gently into that good night.
4. President Obama is all over this (inappropriately, for the president of the United States, but what else is new with this guy) because his whole political life is built on union support. His 2008 campaign arm, Organizing for America is running the show---and by extension, so is he, because THIS IS WHAT HE DOES. Note the name: Organizing for America. Obama is and has always been a COMMUNITY ORGANIZER. He is a professional agitator. A rabble-rouser. Someone who believes in creating chaos in order to use it to achieve his ends. The union protests are HIM.
All of this is going to get worse before it gets better, because there is no money in the state coffers, and because unions and entrenched politicians aren't going to give up their power easily. They will fight back. They are the Qaddafis of the American Midwest.