The Teachers' Union Uprising
in Madison, Wisconsin

This was going to happen sooner or later, somewhere in the country.  The voters finally had enough, and lost their collective patience with endless state government spending and borrowing.  One of the biggest loads on the Wisconsin state budget -- as it is in many other states -- is the high cost of teachers' salaries, pensions and other benefits.  When the Governor put his foot down, the unions caught a glimpse of the end of the gravy train, and a noisy two-week demonstration resulted.  I guess the unions figure that the results of last November's election are less important than the unions' ability to stage a noisy sit-in and stay in the headlines.

This page is a spin-off from the much older page about the teachers' unions.

Note:  The newest information is at the bottom of the page.

A Union Education.  The raucous Wisconsin debate over collective bargaining may be ugly at times, but it has been worth it for the splendid public education.  For the first time in decades, Americans have been asked to look under the government hood at the causes of runaway spending.  What they are discovering is the monopoly power of government unions that have long been on a collision course with taxpayers.  Though it arrived in Madison first, this crack-up was inevitable.

Dems fear union cash drain in Wisconsin.  Organized labor's plans to spend heavily to recall Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) has sparked angst on the left that the effort will come at the expense of Democrats in other states. ... Unions have made ousting Walker a top priority and are poised to spend heavily in Wisconsin.  But Democratic strategists and some senior political experts within the labor movement believe the initiative should have been launched before the November presidential election.

Recall And Let Go.  What's going on in the Badger State is a disgrace.  Unionized teachers have cut classes to protest at the Capitol and resorted to fake doctors' excuses to get away with their truancy.  Some educators have placed their students in the demonstrations.  State and local workers who belong to unions have also walked off their jobs to join the fracas.  Meanwhile, 14 Democratic state senators who don't belong to organized labor but who with one exception are owned by unions have run off to Illinois so the state Senate can't vote on a bill they don't like.

Communists, socialists rallying support behind Madison protests.  Communist and socialist groups — including the Maoist Revolutionary Communist Party, the Communist Party USA, Trotskyist Socialist Workers Party and the Democratic Socialists of America — are voicing their support for the public-sector unions protesting Wisconsin Republican Gov. Scott Walker's plans to curtail their collective bargaining abilities.

The Madison Disgrace.  The Democratic/government-union days of rage in Madison, Wis., are a disgrace.  Paul Ryan calls it Cairo coming to Madison.  But the protesters in Egypt were pro-Democracy.  The government-union protesters in Madison are anti-democracy.  In fact, Democratic legislators are fleeing the state so as not to vote on Gov. Scott Walker's budget cuts.  The teachers union is going on strike in Milwaukee and elsewhere.  They ought to be fired.  Think Reagan PATCO in 1981.  Think Calvin Coolidge police strike in 1919.

Here is a synopsis of the Wisconsin situation:
It's A Mad, Mad Madison World.  The Wisconsin government is in a financial hole, operating with a $137 million deficit for the current fiscal year ending June 30.  Its future is filled with bigger deficits, projected to be as large as $3.6 billion.  One way to cut into the shortfall is to end the public employee unions' collective bargaining privilege that has landed them the generous salaries and benefits the taxpayers are struggling to pay.  Doing what voters elected him to do, new Republican Gov. Scott Walker introduced a bill last week that would strip nonfederal government workers in Wisconsin of their collective bargaining license and require them to contribute more to their benefits package.

Another overview:
Fixed labor game is ending in Wisconsin.  In Wisconsin, the state Capitol is under siege by labor unions.  Thousands turned out to protest Gov. Scott Walker's emergency budget bill, which would require teachers to pay more toward their own pensions and limit collective bargaining. ... It is important to note that the bill does not take away the right of workers to join a union.  It does not take away their right to bargain collectively — although it does limit such bargaining to wages.  It does not force Mr. Walker to lay off 6,000 state employees — the amount needed to fix the budget hole.  It does not take away other civil-service protections.  All it does is bring some fiscal sanity to state pension funding and give employees greater choice over whether to join a union.

Wisconsin is free.  Wisconsin today potentially takes its first steps in freedom.  The events today in Wisconsin actualize the rhetoric of the November election, but rhetoric is not enough.  Nor is voting enough.  There has to be movement and action.  Gov. Walker brings it, and he brings it against the unions and their globalist financing and against remote and detached leadership a thousand miles away in Washington.

Who governs Wisconsin?  The fight for America's future now centres upon Wisconsin.  On one side are Governor Scott Walker, the Wisconsin Republican majorities in the legislature, and the majority of Wisconsinites who voted them into office.  On the other side are the public sector unions for whom governance is, at bottom, a racket — and their Democratic allies.

States finally confront public-sector unions.  Under the new plan, state employee's own contributions to their pension and health care plans would increase to 5.8 percent and 12.6 percent of their pay, respectively.  They would still retain the right to be represented by a union, but the unions would no longer be able to force members to pay dues. ... Sounds reasonable, right?  Well, not if you're a Wisconsin teacher, thousands of whom refused to report to work in protest of Walker's bill, forcing the closure of some two dozen schools.

Unions lose image war.  How will the Battle of Madison, the still-escalating fight between government unions and Wisconsin's Republican Gov. Scott Walker, play out?  Hard to say, as tens of thousands of union protesters on Saturday [2/19/2011] were met with Tea Party counterdemonstrators.  Police were bracing for 50,000 people, a crowd unseen in Madison since the Vietnam War.  What is clear is that there's no going back.

Mockery of Democracy — the Wayward Senators of Wisconsin.  [Scroll down]  On CNN, John Nichols of The Nation referred to them as heroes, with fighters' spirits.  Running away?  Hiding?  In what Bizarro World does this pass as courage?  They hijacked the political process.  They made a mockery of democracy.  Elected to a job they abandoned, swore an oath to a duty they shirked.  In a child's world it's called running away from home, and is reason for a beating.

Bad publicity, good results.  Turns out there is such a thing as bad publicity.  School districts across Wisconsin have closed because of the number of teachers calling in sick.  They aren't sick, of course.  They are in the state capital Madison to protest Gov. Scott Walker's proposed labor policy changes.  This is not a good way to get parents on one's side.  If anything, many parents scrambling to find and pay for daycare are livid.

We Are All Wisconsin Now.  You're next, Ohio!  President Obama's "Organizing for America" is ramping up its efforts to protect public union privileges from the objections of tax serfs. ... If you're an Ohio parent, you should probably start stockpiling educational materials, so you can teach your kids after the union teachers abandon them to join protests at the state house.  Ohio Democrats had better fire up Expedia and find themselves hotel accommodations in Pennsylvania.  You want to lock in the best possible price for your spider hole when you abandon your duties and flee the state to avoid tough votes.

Obama's war on democracy.  The political unrest in Wisconsin, billed as some kind of grass-roots uprising, is being organized and directed by Barack Obama's Organizing for America and the Democratic National Committee.  This development is consistent with Mr. Obama's instructions for supporters to "get in the face" of those who oppose them, but in this case, they are seeking to derail a lawful legislative process.

Wisconsin Democrats flee to Rockford, Ill., to block anti-union bill.  A contingent of Democratic Wisconsin state senators fled Madison today and convened at the Clock Tower Hotel and Resort to block movement on a controversial budget bill.  The Wisconsin Senate Republicans couldn't vote on the bill today unless at least one Democrat was present.

Union Violence In Wisconsin, Arrest Made.  Police have hand-cuffed a protester at the state Capitol after he apparently tried to charge into the state Assembly.

Athens in Mad Town.  For Americans who don't think the welfare state riots of France or Greece can happen here, we recommend a look at the union and Democratic Party spectacle now unfolding in Wisconsin.

Obama and the DNC Interfere In Wisconsin Politics.  More thugogracy from Obama and the DNC.  The voters of Wisconsin spoke in November, asking for a change from Democrat controlled politics in the state that had run up a $3.6 billion tab.  Now Obama and the DNC have insinuated themselves into Wisconsin politics, saying that there is some change that voters just shouldn't have, regardless of election results.  Specifically, Obama and the DNC want to protect their piggy bank -- public sector unions that threaten to bankrupt the state.

Walker to Dems: 'You Can't Have Conversations If You're Not at Work'.  In a press conference tonight [2/17/2011], Gov. Scott Walker called the union concessions he was seeking a "modest request," although he conceded that asking for them was "a bold political move."  And he would like the Democratic state senators — who are currently holed up in a hotel in Illinois so that a vote on the relevant legislation cannot be held — to come back to Wisconsin.

Where Does the Left Get the Time?  As I look at the union members swarm the Wisconsin capital, I have a familiar thought:  A great advantage of the Left is that they are organized and determined — and have a lot of time.  Paid time.  The taxpayer is funding these "days of protest," engaged in by the public-school teachers.  They are using their "sick" leave, provided by the taxpayer, to go rallying.

Bring in the rent-a-goons.
DNC Caught Organizing Wisconsin Protests.  The Democratic National Committee's Organizing for America arm — the remnant of the 2008 Obama campaign — is playing an active role in organizing protests against Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker's attempt to strip most public employees of collective bargaining rights.  OfA, as the campaign group is known, has been criticized at times for staying out of local issues like same-sex marraige, but it's riding to the aide of the public sector unions who hoping to persuade some Republican legislators to oppose Walker's plan.

Scott Walker vs. Public Sector Unions:  [Governor Scott] Walker's reforms are unacceptable to protestors, many of whom are teachers participating in a "sickout" so that they can attend rallies against Walker's proposals.  And that's ironic.  According to the state of Wisconsin, the average teacher salary in Wisconsin is $49,093 annually.  (With benefits, the average total compensation is $77,857.)  With 190 school days per year, Wisconsin public education employees make about $258 per day.  So in an effort to avoid contributing to their own pensions and funding 6 percent more of their own health care premiums, teachers have taken unpaid leave to protest and have given up nearly $500 — so far.

Obama WANTS Wisconsin Mess.  Over at NRO, Jay Nordlinger makes an incredibly good point:  Barack Obama should be urging calm in Wisconsin, no matter WHAT side of the underlying issue he is on.  It is not just unpresidential of him, but despicable, for him in effect to be urging on the mass demonstrations.  But as J. Christian Adams, Justice Department whistle-blower extraordinaire, reminded me ... these are not only the tactics always favored by the left in general, but specifically the sorts of tactics Obama himself was trained in...

Union battle echoes beyond Wisconsin.  About 40,000 public-sector employees crammed into the Wisconsin state Capitol and surrounding blocks in Madison Thursday [2/17/2011], hoping to sway three Republican state senators to block a bill they say is designed to wipe out 50 years of union labor laws in the state.  "We're fighting for our very existence," says Mike Lipp, president of Madison Teachers Incorporated, representing 2,500 public school teachers in the city.

The Editor says...
That's not really true, is it?  The union is fighting for its existence, but no matter what happens, the teachers will still be teachers — they just won't have a strong union.  They are fighting for their union, not their careers.

Union Fight Heats Up.  [Scroll down]  Gov. Walker first introduced his "budget repair" bill a week ago, setting off the firestorm that has swept the Capitol.  Besides limiting collective-bargaining rights for most workers — excepting police, firefighters and others involved in public safety — it would require government workers, who currently contribute little or nothing to their pensions, to contribute 5.8% of their pay to pensions, and pay at least 12.6% of health-care premiums, up from an average of 6%.

The Editor says...
That's what all the fuss is about?  They might have to contribute to their pension funds?  Is that reason enough to storm the capitol in an angry mob?  Fire them all, I say.

Madison schools closed Wednesday due to district-wide teacher sickout.  Madison schools were closed Wednesday [2/16/2011] as teachers planned a district-wide absence to attend protests against Gov. Scott Walker's proposal to limit union bargaining.  District Superintendent Dan Nerad made the announcement at 11 p.m. Tuesday after 40 percent of the 2,600 members of the teachers union had called in sick and more were expected to do so.

Which side are you on?  There is a remarkable drama being played out in Wisconsin as newly elected Governor Scott Walker attempts to get a handle on an unmanageable state budget.  Reducing the collective bargaining rights of public employees other than police, firefighters and the state patrols one of the keys to his efforts.  Yesterday a substantial share of unionized Wisconsin public school teachers called in sick, illegally staging a strike to protest the governor's efforts.  The Madison school district was forced to close when more than 40 percent of the teachers called in sick.

Democracy or chaos?  [Scroll down]  Yep, right here in the good old USA, we are seeing an effort to legislate from the streets — to create a "people's power" movement that will dissuade established authorities from taking action that will nominally "hurt" the people.  But don't be fooled.  The people who will be hurt in Wisconsin by the governor's plan to restore budget sanity are not "We the People," but rather "We the Special Interests."  This is about teachers' unions and other public-service unions trying to protect their slice of the pie when most of the American economic pie has vanished altogether.  The Wall Street Journal compared what is happening in Wisconsin to the "welfare state riots" seen recently in France or Greece.

Fake Doctors' Notes Being Handed Out at Wisconsin Gov. Union Rally.  As tens of thousands of public employees skipped work this week to attend protest rallies outside the Wisconsin State Capitol, many wondered if they would face any disciplinary action for unexcused absences.  On Saturday, a group of men and women in lab coats purporting to be doctors were handing out medical excuse notes, without examining the 'patients.'

Medical fraud in Wisconsin.  Thanks to direct on the scene reporting by Ann Althouse and others, it's become clear that there are doctors giving out fraudulent doctor's excuses to teachers and others at the anti-Walker demonstrations in Madison. ... I'm doubly angry now that mobs have forced the legislature to evacuate the Capitol in Madison, for fear of the peril the mobs represented.

University of Wisconsin Medical School Investigating Doctors' Notes at Protest.  Over the weekend, FOX News reported that doctors from the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine were manning a doctor station to write medical notes excusing those protesting at the Wisconsin State Capitol from work.  Physicians were seen standing on a street corner wearing lab coats and giving out medical notes.

Sick Democrats and Mob Rule.  On Thursday, more than 1,000 teachers called in sick.  What kind of message does it send for a teachers to call in sick when she is not sick?  Most people call that lying.  Furthermore, is it not fraud when they call in sick while spending the day shouting and carrying protest signs at the state capitol and being paid sick leave by the taxpayers?  The numbers are revealing.  Wisconsin teachers average $89,000 a year in salary and benefits.  The average U.S. private sector worker gets $61,000.

Greed Before Prudence.  The spectacle of concerted strikes by teachers, other public employee unions, and by Democrat/Socialist Party legislators in Wisconsin is a throwback to the syndicalist origin of mass industrial unions in the United States.  Such actions aim at forcing the state into financial ruin, if necessary, to keep and to increase the hugely disproportionate and unmerited flow of public funds channelled to public employees' unions.

WI protesters call Gov. Walker a dictator, put crosshairs on his face.  What is happening in Wisconsin is disturbing.  Protesters have jumped on the Egypt bandwagon, claiming that "Cairo has moved to Madison," which trivializes the real brutality and lack of openness of the Mubarak regime, and claims a moral standing for the unions that they simply have not earned.

Wisconsin: Progressivism in All its Ugly Glory.  Don't think for a second that the appearance in Wisconsin of the Democratic National Committee, along with Barack Obama's Organizing for America, is merely a show of "solidarity" with the "oppressed" public service employees.  Wisconsin has become Ground Zero for a progressive movement quite comfortable with the use of intimidation, threats of harm and precisely the same hateful rhetoric they accuse conservatives of perpetrating whenever that particular bit of hypocrisy suits their purposes.

Bring in the outside agitators!
Chicago Teachers Union Organizes for Wisconsin Protest.  On Sunday, Mary Bell, president of the Wisconsin Educational Association Council, instructed the teachers in her union to return to the classroom after many of them skipped school for three days last week.  The unexpected move energized Republicans in Wisconsin, who took it as a sign that negative public reaction to the "sick-out" is making a difference.  Or perhaps they don't need the numbers because the unions are bringing in additional reinforcements.

The Audacity of Mobs.  Late on Friday the news cycle was abuzz that both President Obama's campaign organization as well as the Democratic National Committee were both utilizing significant resources to bring tens of thousands of out-of-state protesters to march on the capital grounds in Madison, Wisconsin to interfere in what amounts to a state matter.  Some of those protestors were dispatched to the private home of the Wisconsin Governor.  Others to the homes of Republican state legislators.

Wisconsin demonstrators party like it's 1968.  Protesters, marking the start of a second week of mass action, jammed inside the state Capitol's rotunda, protected from the sleet and wet snow outside, to munch pizza donated by sympathizers from out of state and from foreign countries.  "It's like a street festival," said Tyler Pagel, 29, whose wife is a teacher...

Herman Cain: Madison, Wisconsin, is Ground Zero for future of American politics.  In an interview with The Daily Caller before he gave his speech in Madison, likely 2012 presidential candidate Herman Cain said the budget fight in Wisconsin "isn't about union busting.  This is about saving the state of Wisconsin."

Government Worker Unions: The Long Good-bye.  There is nothing wrong with private people or organizations, including private unions, spending money on political campaigns as institutional sources are disclosed.  However, AFSCME, the NEA, the AFT (American Federation of Teachers) or the public union sector of SEIU are government employees.  Their salaries are paid by the taxpayers and a portion of their salaries go to union dues which are slush funds for political activity and the promotion of left-wing causes.  In 2008 the NEA and the AFT made contributions and grants totaling over $96 million of union dues; all to liberal organizations irrespective of the desires of the rank and file or the taxpayer.

Mob Mentality, Mob Rules, We All Lose.  As Democrat officeholders fled the Madison capitol, Democratic voters inundated it.  Teachers calling in sick en masse have shut down numerous public schools.  At the rallies, doctors' notes sans examinations could purportedly be had by teachers too "sick" for school but healthy enough to demonstrate.  After playing hooky themselves, teachers have shamelessly encouraged students to ditch school in favor of protesting.  As one marching youngster told Wisconsin's MacIver Institute, "We're trying to stop whatever this dude is doing."

Wisconsin's teachers make a little more money than they're letting on.  The Daily Caller has broken out the salaries and benefits of teachers who have publicly entered the debate by commenting to the press.  Wisconsin's 2010 Teacher of the Year, Leah Lechleiter-Luke of Mauston High School, told CNN the budget changes would force her to look for additional part-time work. ... Lechleiter-Luke makes $54,928 in base salary and $32,213 in "fringe benefits," which include health insurance, life insurance and retirement pay.

Doin' the Madison Mis-Step.  Our educational system has become a money pit where funding levels bear no relationship to results.  No, the simple truth is that [teachers have] earned this exalted status not as a reward for excellence but through extortion, by coercive collective bargaining, a monopoly status that fosters inefficiency, waste and mediocrity, and making generous contributions of time and money to a political party that has become little more than an operating arm of the teacher and other public employee unions.

The Left's Assault on Democracy in Wisconsin.  Leftist radicals don't believe in democracy in the way the term is used in America. ... The union goons and paid protesters wreaking havoc in Madison, Wisconsin believe in the radical left-wing un-American conception of democracy.  They're being cheered on by the Rev. Jesse Jackson who dropped by to outrageously compare the ongoing disruptions to the 1965 civil rights march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama.  "This is a Martin Luther King moment, this is a Gandhi moment," he said without chuckling.

Desperate Wisconsin Unions Resort to Alinsky Tactics.  Public sector unions have grown in power, and are now the biggest contributor to political campaigns.  The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) spent $87.5 million last year to help Democrat politicians and influence their votes.  The number of government jobs rose even while unemployment during the recession tipped 10%.  Many public employees in Wisconsin can retire at age 55 with close to full pay, much earlier than the average private sector employee.  Schoolteachers in Madison are some of the best paid teachers in the country, earning an average of $56,000 a year in salary plus benefits totaling over $100,000 in compensation.

Barack Hussein Alinsky.  As a large and furious demonstration was under way outside and inside the Capitol in Madison last week, Barack Obama invited in a TV camera crew from Milwaukee and proceeded to fan the flames.  Dropping the mask of The Great Compromiser, Obama reverted to his role as South Chicago community organizer, charging Gov. Scott Walker and the Wisconsin legislature with an "assault on unions." ... After Obama goaded the demonstrators, the protests swelled.  All 14 Democratic state senators fled to Illinois to paralyze the upper chamber by denying it a quorum.  Teachers went on strike, left kids in the classroom and came to Madison.  Schools shut down.  Jesse Jackson arrived.

Bring in more Astroturf!
New York's Teamsters Local 237 to bus in support to union protestors in Wisconsin.  The Wisconsin workers who have staged a week-long protest against their union-busting governor are getting some Big Apple reinforcements.  Teamsters Local 237, which represents various city workers, intends to "bus a couple hundred" members to Madison — possibly this week, Deputy Director Pete Gutierrez told The [New York] Daily News.

How the Left Sees the Union Crisis in Madison.  For the Left, there is no real fiscal crisis.  The states can easily afford to give the public sector unions everything they ask for.  There is one easy answer:  tax the rich.

What the Unions Want, and Why It's Insane.  Wisconsin has had enough, and there is a political revolution underway.  Last November, voters stormed the Capitol in Madison with their votes.  They are now in the process of fighting back and reclaiming their state from liberal politicians, greedy public employee unions, and a morbidly obese state government.

The Wisconsin Protests and the New Medical Ethics.  One blogger posted the fake "sick" note he received from the doctors.  He observed, "I am not a teacher, but I managed to get a note.  They did not ask for any identification or where I might teach.  They were literally handing these out to anyone and everyone."  University of Wisconsin law professor Ann Althouse spoke with one of these doctors who was completely unapologetic for his actions, saying that it was "not dishonest" but rather "an ok thing to do" because it was in the interest of "social activism."  These sorts of moral rationalizations are an entirely predictable outcome of the new form of "progressive" medical ethics being taught to American medical students.

Democrats, Government Unions Are Co-Dependent.  The fleeing Democrats in Wisconsin and Indiana say they are protecting state workers, but they have plenty of self-interested reasons to hit the road.  Their self-imposed exile and national Democrats' support show just how key Big Labor is to their fortunes.  Unions have long been a backbone of support for the Democratic Party.  They have become even more important in recent years as they ramped up campaign efforts.  Without them, Democrats have no chance of reversing the GOP's 2010 gains.

Sick days for the sick at heart.  Teachers across Wisconsin are calling in sick to protest the bill that would require them to pay half the cost of their pensions and roughly 13 percent of their health care coverage.  Can you say "spoiled brats"?  So many teachers in Milwaukee have called in sick to protest this widely supported bill that Milwaukee schools have shut down.  The teachers should be fired or at least forced to sit in the corner and wear dunce hats and apologize for this juvenile stunt.

Wisconsin Students: Dunces and Dupes.  There are a whole lot of adolescents in Wisconsin who need to get smacked back to reality.  They've been lobotomized, and you can thank the thuggish teachers union for that.  What's been happening on the ground in Wisconsin is shameful on so many different levels.

Insurance Scam Driving Wisconsin Union Debate.  Much of the current controversy in Wisconsin involves the impending loss of most collective bargaining privileges for state employees, including public school teachers.  The fact is that the Wisconsin Education Association Council, the largest teachers union in the state, has grossly abused that privilege for decades, resulting in the unnecessary siphoning of millions of dollars from Wisconsin public schools.
This is an original compilation, Copyright © 2013 by Andrew K. Dart

Up next for Wisconsin: A 'general strike'.  The local AFl-CIO organization in Wisconsin has suggested that a general strike may be necessary if the bill containing public union reforms is passed. ... Who's going to break it to these bozos that the kind of power it would take to make a general strike succeed hasn't been found in the labor movement for about 50 years?

Wisc. Union Protestors Shouting Down FNC Fit Pattern of Leftist Censorship.  Nothing more cogently demonstrated the left's apparent strategy in Madison, Wisconsin thus far than a group of pro-union demonstrators silencing a Fox News report on a budding scandal there with cries demanding that Fox "tell the truth."  Demonstrators, and much of the left over the past week, were unconcerned with the content of Fox's report.  The fact that Fox was doing the reporting meant that the truth was not being told.

Wisconsin Myths and Facts:
MYTH:  [Governor] Walker, if he succeeds, will make Wisconsin peculiarly hard on its employees.
FACT:  The governor proposes that public employees contribute 12.6 percent of the cost of their health care.  That is still less than half of the national average.  He proposes that they pay less than 6 percent of their earnings toward their pensions that is in line with the national average.
MYTH:  Walker is an extremist taking away collective-bargaining rights.
FACT:  He's taking away the right to collectively bargain on pensions and benefits, but not on wages — though wage increases will be capped at the rate of inflation.  This is a very modest and sensible reform.

Top 10 Labor Union Outrages.  When the Wisconsin legislature prepared to vote on requiring unionized government workers to increase paltry contributions to their health care plans and pensions, teachers abandoned their classrooms to protest and Democrats in the state senate fled to Illinois to avoid a vote.  State workers make an average salary of more than $50,000, with another $40,000-plus in benefits, while contributing only 0.2% of their wages to their pension plans.  This battle over public-employee union benefits is spreading like wildfire across the U.S. as cash-strapped states face massive unfunded pension liabilities.

Bogus statistic from Wisconsin union backers spreads in media despite being debunked.  On Wednesday [2/23/2011], PolitiFact debunked the claim by Wisconsin union supporters that Virginia, which bans collective bargaining in state agencies, ranks 44th in the nation in ACT/SAT scores, compared to Wisconsin ranking 2nd.  For example, it noted that in 2009, Virginia ranked 22nd in ACT scores, while Wisconsin ranked 13th.  As PolitiFact notes, this claim was originally disseminated by the Wisconsin Democratic Party, which has now retracted it.  (Although PolitiFact didn't note this, in 2010, Virginia actually beat Wisconsin in ACT scores, with Virginia ranked 12th and Wisconsin ranked 17th.  Unlike Wisconsin, Virginia is a right-to-work state that bars forcing employees to pay union dues.  Collective bargaining with government employee unions is currently mandated in Wisconsin, but banned in Virginia).

Organized medical fraud in Wisconsin.  "Primum nil nocere."  First, do no harm.  This bedrock principle in medicine is a foreign language to most politicians and, sadly, to some Wisconsin doctors, who have violated their oath and the public trust as they have defrauded Wisconsin taxpayers.  Several University of Wisconsin family physicians donned their sacred white coats and were caught distributing fraudulent "sick notes" free for the asking quite literally by the boxful — I wonder who paid for that printing — to teachers and others who skipped work to engage in political protest at the state Capitol in Madison.  Whatever the merits of the teachers' protest, there's a word for what these doctors and teachers are perpetrating:  fraud.

How Unions Dis Taxpayers.  The mayhem in Madison, Wis., over the last two weeks has highlighted the determination of organized labor unions to continue to restrict workers' rights, and to try to intimidate Gov. Scott Walker and the taxpayers into some more unsustainable demands.

Bargaining over a ruined product.  If teachers unions would use their collective-bargaining rights to do good for their students rather than doing well for themselves, they could make a stronger case for themselves.  The good teachers, if they provide a little evidence, might even make a credible argument for getting paid more money.  But no.  They're talking "me, me, me."

Are Public Unions Speeding American's Destruction?  The ongoing public employees' union protests in Wisconsin against the (minor) cut in benefits witnesses these protestors comparing their struggle to those of the popular, spontaneous public uprising raging all over the Middle East.  Such a claim however is ludicrous and laughable.  The public in the Middle Eastern countries is revolting against government tyranny.  On the contrary, if the demands of the Wisconsin protestors are heeded, it would result in high taxes and therefore, more government tyranny on the public.  Any claims by the unions portraying themselves as pro-children or pro-public to justify their demands are blatantly false.  Make no mistake, a victory for the unions means greater tyranny and suffering for the public.

Leaving Millions in Damage, Wis. Protesters Depart Capitol.  After causing $7.5 million in damages to the state capitol, the last of the Wisconsin protesters filed out last night, singing "Solidarity Forever."

Angry mobs almost always leave damage behind.
Officials say it'll cost $7.5 million to clean up the mess left by protesters.  It could cost as much as $7.5 million to repair damage protesters have done to the Capitol Building marble say officials in Madison.  Fixing posters to the marble with tape and glue appears to have done the bulk of the damage.  During testimony Thursday, a representative from the Attorney General's office said a contractor estimated it would cost $500,000 to remove all of the posters and garbage.  He says it would cost $6 million to restore the marble inside of the Capitol building and another $1 million to touch up the marble outside of the building.

State officials say $7 million cleanup of state Capitol was overstated.  State officials admitted Friday that they may have overstated cleanup costs related to the recent two-week state Capitol camp-out by as much as $7 million as union leaders and protesters harshly criticized the estimate quoted by a state lawyer at a court hearing Thursday. ... Department of Administration Secretary Mike Huebsch admitted Friday the $7.5 million quoted by DOA lawyer Cari Ann Renlund was "at the high end of the range" and that actual cleanup costs could be as low as $347,500.

$101,091: Average annual compensation for Milwaukee teachers.  The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel confirms that's how much the average Milwaukee teacher will be paid in salary and benefits in 2011.

The Truth About Wisconsin.  The fundamental issue in Wisconsin — and states considering similar budget cuts — is not whether government employees should contribute more (in Wisconsin's case, more being merely something) to their health or pension plans — though that is important.  Rather, it is whether workers should have the right to say no.  If passed, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker's emergency budget will allow workers to opt out of joining a union and still keep their jobs.  It would allow workers to vote every year on whether they want to keep their union. ... Unions allege that, if Walker's budget bill is passed, state employees will be subject to arbitrary disciplinary actions and firings.  Nothing could be further from the truth.

Wisconsin Democrats return.  The 14 Wisconsin state Senate Democrats who fled the state in order to block passage of a controversial union bill will return Thursday [3/10/2011].

Why I'm Fighting in Wisconsin.  [Scroll down]  The unions say they are ready to accept concessions, yet their actions speak louder than words.  Over the past three weeks, local unions across the state have pursued contracts without new pension or health-insurance contributions.  Their rhetoric does not match their record on this issue.  Local governments can't pass budgets on a hope and a prayer.  Beyond balancing budgets, our reforms give schools — as well as state and local governments — the tools to reward productive workers and improve their operations.  Most crucially, our reforms confront the barriers of collective bargaining that currently block innovation and reform.

Union thugs try to silence recall effort in Wisconsin.  With the Wisconsin Senate and the democratic process being held hostage by 14 Democrat union puppets on the run in the People's Republic of Illinois, the hard working-tax payers of the Dairy State have begun the recall process.  Local patriots have risen to the challenge posed by the irrational and unethical conduct of the Senate Democrats and have volunteered their time and effort in a truly grassroots expression of their abiding faith in representative government.  This past weekend, peaceful recall petition events came under assault from union agitators eager to flex their muscle and derail the free and democratic process.

Us vs. them unions.  Republicans in the Wisconsin statehouse had enough of Democratic Party antics designed to insulate its union supporter base from the pains of the economic malaise affecting the rest of us.  The state Senate voted Wednesday [3/9/2011] to ban public-sector employees from entering into collective bargaining arrangements.  Union thugs encircling the capitol building made a spectacle of themselves as the Assembly turned to consider the bill yesterday.

Wisconsin: Left's war on democracy.  With the world's attention focused on Libya and the events in the Arab world, it's easy to forget that, back in Wisconsin, a group of 14 rogue state senators is still holding representative democracy hostage.  Worse, the stunt has now morphed into an attack on the legitimacy of elections.

Wisconsin's lesson for California.  The Wisconsin Legislature has abolished nearly all collective bargaining rights for public employees and required them to pay a portion of their retirement benefits.  We hope this starts a badly needed nationwide trend.

Privatize Education.  The obnoxious and disruptive conduct of public employee unions shows how bad labor unions in general have been for America. ... Unions are a huge drag on our economy and a major cause for the flight of good jobs out of our nation.  More repulsive is the fact that the teacher-goons in Wisconsin who spew hate in Madison have been entrusted with the education of our children.  Is there harm in these creepy folks striking?  Actually, there may be more harm in them returning to work.

Democrat Thuggery in Its Worst Form.  After Democratic state senators fled the state to block a fair vote, and after union members took over the capitol building, and after Republican senators received death threats, Wisconsin state Sen. Robert Jauch, D-Poplar, labeled Republican passage of a bill to reduce public employee collective bargaining power "political thuggery in its worst form."  And the left wonders why so much of America doesn't take it seriously.

Union mobocracy drowns out democracy in Wisconsin.  [Scroll down]  Republican legislators were often surrounded and threatened by cursing demonstrators; protesters repeatedly disrupted the legislative process; and chanting, screaming, horn-blowing crowds took over the rotunda and other parts of the capitol.  Outside agitators were shipped into the state by President Obama's Organizing for America, the SEIU and other national unions, and the organization formerly known as ACORN.  As events reached a crescendo, demonstrators broke past security police, breaking windows and forcing doors open in mob actions clearly intended to bring Wisconsin government to a stop and to nullify the results of last November's elections.  Worst of all, many credible death threats were received by Republican legislators and are now being investigated by Wisconsin law enforcement authorities.

March of the Solidarity Cows.  It's a good rule of thumb that anyone who thinks Hitler is the only person who could possibly disagree with them has dug a deep foxhole on the losing side of an argument.  The point of all this is not persuasion, but intimidation.  No thinking taxpayer would be eager to support the continued looting of a bankrupt state, with vast new taxes looming on the horizon, to fund the diamond-studded results of collective bargaining by public unions.  The unions don't want Wisconsin taxpayers to think, and they really don't need their "support."  They require only their submission and silence.

20 Days of Left-Wing Thuggery in Wisconsin.  [In this article], you'll find a compilation of 20 days worth of the death threats, vandalism, and intimidation practiced by pro-union thugs opposed to Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker's budget repair bill. ... Not only should the local and national media be amplifying their coverage of this ongoing scandal because of the bar they themselves set with the Tea Party for what rises to the level of of racism, "predominantly white" protesters and troubling behavior — but in the wake of the tragic shootings in Tuscon you would think direct threats on elected officials would rate a little outrage.  Well, obviously not when those threats come from the Left.

Obama Unions a Microcosm of Liberalism: Parasites Devouring Their Host.  [Scroll down]  Incoming Governor Scott Walker of Wisconsin faced a budget shortfall of hundreds of millions and looked for areas to cut.  When Democrat state senators were informed there would be a vote to strip union members of certain bargaining chips in order to bring cuts in public unions, they decided to bail from the state.  Thousands of supporters flooded the capital to protest the Governor's maneuver.  But the only conclusion an unbiased viewer can draw is that union members believe their status is so sacred they cannot be asked to cut pay or benefits, even when the solvency of their employer is on the line.

Top 10 Ugly Moments in the Wisconsin Union Battle.  The mainstream media was in a tizzy about signs at Tea Party rallies that pictured Obama with a Hitler mustache, but there was no similar outrage about the intemperate signs at the Wisconsin protests.

Madison schools will add 20 minutes to school day to make up for sick-outs.  Students in the Madison School District will have up to 20 minutes of additional classroom time each day starting Monday [3/14/2011] to make up for four days canceled last month because teachers were attending protests.  Because no additional days will be added to the calendar, most teachers will not receive additional compensation for that time, district spokesman Ken Syke said.

Wisconsin's useful idiots.  [Scroll down]  Sensing a break in my new pal's tirade, I asked him if he was aware that the Communist Party was actively supporting the public sector union's battle against the tax-payers.  The dedicated young educator then spewed an expletive laden monologue in wont of reason.  While he was further engaged in a flurry of hand signals I asked him to check out, the official website of the Communist Party or  At that juncture our conversation came to an abrupt halt.  Thankfully the young school teacher with the winning personality was one of only three union agitators who assailed our petition "drive through" event during our four hour shift.

Display the union label ... or swim with the fishes.  There's an old union slogan, Labor is entitled to all it creates.  These days, we might say, Labor is entitled to all it can extort.  At least that's what they apparently believe.  They force workers to pay union dues so they can lavish campaign money on crony politicians who will in return richly reward them come contract time.  In tougher times, well, they just threaten to shut everybody down.  That's what they have done to state government these past few weeks.

Elections Have Consequences — Unless Liberals Lose.  Last November, Republicans won back a share of power in Washington.  They also won big victories in the states, including Wisconsin.  Those elections have consequences, too, as conservative pundits have pointed out during the Wisconsin union furor.  But 14 Democratic senators did not accept what happened last November and fled the state, keeping the duly elected representatives of the people from operating.  Losing an election doesn't mean you have to like it.  Go ahead, be outraged at the Wisconsin union bill.  If you think Gov. Scott Walker and the Republican legislature went too far, take your outrage to the ballot box in 2012.

Wisconsin Investigations Into Fake Doctor Excuses Heat Up.  Doctors accused of writing fake sick notes to protesters who staged sick outs to attend rallies, have until March 21st to respond to complaints filed with the Department of Regulation and Licensing, MacIver News Service has learned.

Wisconsin after the Union Takeover:  "Are you wearing a bulletproof vest?"  Click.  Michael Hintze's phone line went dead — the caller never identified himself.  A prominent Wisconsin Tea Party leader, Hintze is the latest recipient of anonymous death threats.  Maybe you thought it was finally over in Wisconsin. ... But there's more.  Though chapter one undeniably ended with a resounding victory for Walker, the next part may easily become a forgotten chapter among thousands in the left's annals of Alinsky-style combat.

The Aroma of Illegality.  For the last few weeks, Madison, Wisconsin, has been Malodorous Central, as various government employees, from the 14 Fleebagging Democratic state senators to protesting teachers and sundry public union apparatchiks, have endeavored to substitute mob rule for the rule of law.  "After the vote on collective bargaining in the Wisconsin Senate," John Hinderaker reports at Powerline, "armed guards led Republican Senators through a tunnel, out of the Capitol and onto a waiting bus, which reportedly was commandeered for the purpose on an emergency basis.  A howling mob of union members threatened the Republicans, shouted obscenities and pounded on the bus."

Wisconsin GOP State Senator Claims Vandalism, Death Threats.  One of the Republican state Senators facing a recall campaign in Wisconsin, Sen. Dan Kapanke, has announced that he has been subject to vandalism and death threats as a result of his support for Gov. Scott Walker's newly passed law curtailing public employee unions — and as a result, is canceling some local events in his district.

The Totalitarian Minority.  Wisconsin was Democrat political theater at its finest.  Milking the civil rights movement for every drop of sympathy, the Rev. Jesse Jackson recited his tired rhyming shtick on the steps of the state house, conflating the conflict there with a time of actual injustice.  Ironically and sadly, Students for a Democratic Society demonstrated in solidarity with a privileged minority of "haves" to undermine the democratic process.  The courses taught by their well-compensated professors left out critical analysis.  A bonus for the unions, they got naïve teenage foot soldiers and bearded graduate students to shout and rampage and shove democracy aside for nothing.

Bench Brawl in Wisconsin.  The Left long ago stopped pretending that court proceedings were anything other than exercises in raw-power politics, and so they've taken their fight against Wisconsin governor Scott Walker to the state supreme court — not in the form of a lawsuit, but in the form of a multimillion-dollar intervention into an election to a ten-year term on the court.  Wisconsin supreme court justice David Prosser went to bed one night a respected former prosecutor, and woke up the next morning the target of a $3 million union-run smear campaign, falsely accused of being an enabler of pedophiles.

Woman charged with e-mail threats in Wisconsin union fight.  Wisconsin prosecutors filed a four-count criminal complaint on Thursday [3/31/2011] against a 26-year-old woman, charging her with sending e-mail threats to Republican state senators after they passed controversial curbs on public employee union rights.

Wisconsin Unions Get Ugly.  Having lost their fight in the legislature, Wisconsin unions are now getting out the steel pipes for those who don't step lively to their cause.  A letter we've seen that was sent to businesses in southeastern Wisconsin shows that Big Labor's latest strategy is to threaten small businesses with boycotts if they don't publicly declare their support for government union monopoly power.

Wisconsin's Battle Supreme.  The rancorous political battles in Wisconsin haven't died down even weeks after Republican Governor Scott Walker's budget victories seemed to have settled the matter.  Liberals in the state are trying to make the April election for a state supreme court justice a referendum on Governor Walker and his policies to reform public union pensions.  A liberal front group called Greater Wisconsin Committee has announced it will spend as much as $3 million on the race.

Wisconsin's Supreme Moment.  Wisconsin's public-sector unions hope to exact revenge against Gov. Scott Walker in tomorrow's supreme court election for passing legislation curtailing their collective bargaining rights.  The law — currently under court injunction — inevitably will find its way before the state's high court, and many observers on both sides of the issue see the election as a referendum on how the court should rule on the law.

Big Labor's Wisconsin Revenge:  We believe the battle between public unions and taxpayers will define the next decade in most U.S. states, and this week the union empire struck back in Wisconsin.  Big Labor went all-in to seek revenge against Governor Scott Walker's public union reforms, and they may have taken over the state Supreme Court in the bargain.

Waging war, union-style, in Wisconsin.  Amid growing fear that our country is being dragged over a fiscal cliff, the union-led left is pursuing a double-edged strategy:  Make public noises that bipartisan reforms are needed while doing whatever is necessary to remove anyone who might actually effect such reforms.  Along the way, accuse the GOP of plotting to kick the elderly into the snow and snatch pacifiers out of babies' mouths.  In a way, Wisconsin is the new California; trends that start there wind up all over the country.

Prosser Wins by 7,316 Votes.  The Associated Press reports that a canvassing of ballots from the recent Wisconsin elections is complete, and Justice David Prosser has emerged victorious, defeating union-backed challenger JoAnne Kloppenburg by 7,316 votes.

Weeks later...
Wis. Supreme Court challenger concedes defeat.  JoAnne Kloppenburg has conceded defeat [5/31/2011] in the Wisconsin Supreme Court race against incumbent conservative Justice David Prosser.

Scott Walker Is Just Getting Started.  When Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker curtailed collective bargaining privileges for public sector workers (formerly known as public servants), it resulted in all-out political war in Madison.  Walker won the showdown, and now the state can get its financial house in order.  But that doesn't mean Walker is done taking on the unions.

Void of judge's ruling on unions sought.  The state Department of Justice asked the state Supreme Court on Friday to immediately vacate a judge's decision that voided a plan by Gov. Scott Walker to greatly limit collective bargaining for public workers.  In its filing, the department said Dane County Circuit Judge Maryann Sumi made so many errors in a ruling Thursday that the Supreme Court should throw out her decision even before it hears oral arguments in the case June 6.

Judge Strikes Down Wisconsin Collective Bargaining Law.  Even though a circuit court judge on Thursday [5/26/2011] struck down Wisconsin's law stripping nearly all collective bargaining power from most public workers, she won't have the final say in the union fight that has captivated the nation.

Pure Class: Wisconsin Leftists Disrupt Special Olympics Ceremony to Picket Scott Walker.  Thanks to the MacIver Institute's clear commentary, and the clip's self-explanatory images, this wretched scene needs no further context.

How Union Busting Helps Kids (and Everyone Else) In WI.  Congratulations to Governor Scott Walker for sticking to his guns.  The state of Wisconsin is far better off because of it.  So are taxpayers.  Most importantly, so are the school kids.

Union curbs rescue a Wisconsin school district.  The Kaukauna School District, in the Fox River Valley of Wisconsin near Appleton, has about 4,200 students and about 400 employees.  It has struggled in recent times and this year faced a deficit of $400,000.  But after the law went into effect, at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday [6/29/011], school officials put in place new policies they estimate will turn that $400,000 deficit into a $1.5 million surplus.  And it's all because of the very provisions that union leaders predicted would be disastrous.

Both parties claim victory in Wisconsin.  In Wisconsin, Democrats successfully recalled just two of the six challenged Republicans in the state senate, leaving the GOP in control of the chamber.  The debate over what this means for the next round of recalls, as well as the national political environment, continues.

Look who is laying off in Wisconsin.  Wisconsin's powerful statewide teachers union said 40 percent of its staff members were laid off Monday [8/15/2011] as a result of the law pushed by Gov. Scott Walker and passed by the Legislature curbing collective bargaining rights.

Wis. largest teachers union plans on laying off 40% of staff members.  Wisconsin's largest teachers' union plans to lay off 40% of its staff members.  Director Dan Burkhalter of the Wisconsin Education Association Council said Monday that 42 people who work for the union had received layoff notices.  And he blamed it on what he called Governor Scott Walker's "union-busting" legislation.

Unions shut down in Wisconsin.  Not with a bang, but with a whimper.  Slowly those big, noisy, government union machines that protested so loudly in Wisconsin's capitol against the new and duly elected Republican regime's changes in collective bargaining rules — giving the general public and taxpayers a better deal — are closing up shop.

Labor Day Parade Sponsor to Republican Pols: You're Not Welcome.  The childishness on the left in Wisconsin continues. ... What seems foolish about this is that the sponsors could have achieved their goal by doing nothing.  Because of safety concerns, it seems likely that many GOP pols would have backed out anyway.

"Right to Work" bill would expose teachers union's true supporters.  Wisconsin residents learned a valuable lesson in the wake of recent legislation that curbed the collective bargaining power of the state's teachers union:  many educators would prefer not to join their teachers union or pay union dues.  Legislation passed as part of Gov. Scott Walker's budget repair bill, commonly known as Act 10, makes payroll deductions for union dues illegal.  The result has been a drastic decrease in union revenue, which we believe is a more accurate reflection of the union's true support in Wisconsin.

Have Wisconsin Unions Jumped the Shark?  The Wisconsin Education Association Council (WEAC) has been organizing its members to show up to school board meetings to protest the cost-saving measures being implemented, thanks exclusively to Gov. Scott Walker's budget repair law.  WEAC crybaby sessions at local school board meetings are becoming a weekly event. ... But to WEAC's dismay, school board members who have been targeted for intimidation are showing up to these meetings prepared for the protests.  So are local residents who have had their fill of union bullying.

Complaint against Ind. Dems who fled to Ill. dismissed.  The Indiana Election Commission has dismissed a campaign finance complaint involving House Democrats who staged a five-week legislative walkout this year.

Milwaukee Union President Weeps for Lost Power.  [Scroll down]  Is it any wonder that Jimmy and Jane can't read?  Is there any doubt that there is a pressing need for sweeping school reform in Wisconsin?  We need teachers who are committed to academics, instead of spreading their radical political beliefs to naïve children.

Wisconsin: Walker Recall Fizzling As Budget Reforms Succeed.  The people of Wisconsin are learning what Virginia residents already know:  Conservative governance works.  In the wake of the madness in Madison, Badger State Leftists vowed to begin the process of recalling Gov. Scott Walker — or as many liberals affectionately called him, "Hitler."  Since then, Wisconsin Democrats and unions spent millions on an unsuccessful bid to re-capture the State Senate, and a conservative State Supreme Court judge was re-elected.  Despite their furious rallies and tough talk, the Left's collective tantrum failed because the policy they opposed so fanatically has been paying early dividends.

WI State Senate Recall Petition Rife With Invalid Signatures, Duplicates, and Errors.  There have been many concerns that thousands of fraudulent signatures would be counted in the recalls.  During the 60 day circulation period, there were many reports of apparent recall fraud, including one man telling WISN that he had signed over 80 times. ... At one point, a GAB staff member even indicated that Mickey Mouse and Adolf Hitler would be deemed valid signatures based upon their review.  As a result, a Waukesha County judge then forced the GAB to do a more rigorous review by looking for and striking duplicate signatures, illegible signatures, and fake names.

The War on Wisconsin.  Fiscally conservative leaders in the Badger State are under coordinated siege from Big Labor, the White House, the liberal media and the judiciary.  The yearlong campaign of union thuggery, family harassment and intimidation of Republican donors and businesses is about to escalate even further.

Watch Wisconsin.  [Scroll down]  Most of all, if the left throws every single weapon it can at Wisconsin Republicans and yet cannot prevent a conservative agenda from becoming law, then the left must know that it is vulnerable everywhere to conservatives who do not back down.  If this last desperate effort of the power-mongers of leftism fails, then their whip may become a wet noodle, and the whole corrupt syndicate of leftism may completely unravel.

Wisconsin Teachers Union Teams up with Radicals.  The demonstrations and chaos that followed Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker's introduction of budget reforms — later known as Act 10 — were a preview of what was to come from the orchestrated Occupy Wall Street protests.  The protests in Madison had many of the same elements, except for Occupy's numerous rapes, of course.  As it turns out, there was a logical reason for the similarities.  Many of the same type of radical socialists who are involved in the Occupy movement have been involved in the effort to overturn Act 10 and remove Walker from office.

Your union dues at work:
Sixty-Million Dollar Union Assault on Wisconsin Governor Walker.  The campaign seeks to dissemble facts and distract from — or rather, ignore — real issues, mainly fiscal.  Put simply, unions want a return to golden oldie days when they, through their Democrat marionettes, pretty much ran things at the Capitol in Madison.  To win, vituperative anti-Walker forces are putting up an estimated $60 million in ad dollars, all derived from union brethren from all parts of America.

In Scott Walker Recall Race, Organized Labor's Pick Falls Short.  Democrats aiming to send a resounding message about the enduring strength of organized labor by recalling Republican Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker next month have a problem:  the candidate backed by nearly every union is poised to lose the primary on Tuesday to the man Walker defeated in 2010.

Organized labor's popularity is rapidly eroding.
Union Issues a Loser with WI Dems.  Last year, when Gov. Scott Walker won passage of his budget reform bill, WI's public sector unions vowed to take the issue to the voters and oust Walker in a recall election.  In the interim, the unions tried, and failed, to wrest control of the state Senate in recall elections last year.  And, they tried, and failed, to take control of the state Supreme Court.  Today [5/8/2012], their leading candidate in the recall election, Kathleen Falk, is set for a thumping defeat to moderate Democrat, Tom Barret, mayor of Milwaukee.  It turns out that, even among WI Democrats, the union positions just aren't that popular with voters.

One Million Recall Signatures and Only 650k Votes?.  Why is this number so interesting?  Well, because we have all heard for months now how many furious Wisconsinites there are in the dairy state.  And, of course, how they accounted for over one million signatures to recall Governor Walker.  Over one million!  That's right, over one million Wisconsinites supposedly signed the petitions, but only 650,725 showed up to vote.  That's about 40% fewer voters than signers.  How likely is that?

The Wisconsin Boom.  Wisconsin has pulled back from the brink of fiscal insolvency after Governor Scott Walker's collective bargaining and budget reforms, despite doomsday warnings of fiscal disaster.  Neighboring Illinois, whose Democratic governor opted for tax hikes, has not fared as well.

News You Won't Find At The New York Times.  In the Times cocoon, a grass roots mobilization of feisty, democracy-loving Wisconsinites is rising in rebellion against the hated Walker business and big donor lobby.  In the actual Wisconsin, there are two grass roots movements opposing each other.  The anti-union populists may end up with more energy, more unity and more votes than the pro-union organizers.  The labor mobilization against the Walker reforms has been lovingly and carefully covered by the Times and its brethren since Day One:  nothing like that level of analysis has been deployed on Walker's grass roots support.

Unions may have brought on disaster for themselves in Wisconsin.  Remember when noisy, vulgar vandals invaded Wisconsin's State Capitol, spray painting graffiti on the pristine white marble?  Remember when the legislative Democrats fled the state to prevent majority rule taking place?  Remember when the labor unions raised millions to gin up the necessary number of signatures to launch a recall election for Governor Scott Walker and Lt. Governor Rebecca Kleefisch?  The bosses made the mistake of believing their own propaganda.

Democratic Disaster Looms in Wisconsin.  After more than a year of effort by a vengeful union movement and their Democratic allies, the decision to try to punish [Governor Scott] Walker for passing legislation that cut back on the power of unions to hold the state hostage in negotiations may turn out to be the biggest miscalculation of 2012.

Media Ignores $21 Million Unions Spent in WI.  [Scroll down]  On the surface, then, it appears that Walker had a tremendous cash advantage.  Not so fast.  As it turns out, labor unions spent an additional $21 million on the recall election.  When it came to state senate recall elections back in September 2011, Democrats outspent Republicans $23.4 million to $20.5 million. [...] In terms of strict numbers, Walker spent some $30 million; Barrett and the unions spent $25 million.  That's not a 7-to-1 differential.  And when you add in unions' inherent advantage in ground game, you're talking about a better-than-even split for Barrett.

The Anti-Democratic Party.  In Wisconsin, union goons and paid protesters from Obama-backed groups such as Organizing for America have been periodically wreaking havoc over the past year and a half.  They subscribe wholeheartedly to the subjective radical left-wing conception of democracy.  They don't care that Americans were disgusted last year by the absconding Wisconsin state senators (Democrats) who fled in order to deprive the duly elected Republican majority of the quorum needed for passing legislation.  The backlash against this anti-democratic stunt and against the government unions' lavish compensation packages continues to build.  Wisconsinites want their elected officials to balance the books, but the spendthrift unions won't allow that to happen.

Why Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker will win big on Tuesday:  Government employee unions are a real threat to national security, far worse than the unproven fraud called global warming.  Government employee pensions threaten our children's future.  They will destroy the American Dream and wipe away our quality of life.  America is doomed to follow Europe off the cliff, if we don't dramatically reform public pensions... today.

Teachers union president brags about pushing Walker recall in schools.  Anyone who claims that teachers unions exist to improve public education is misinformed or lying.  The unions have become blatantly political organizations that spend most of their time and resources trying to maintain their domination of public schools and school budgets.

The "People United" Go Down In Flames.  A Democratic Party dominated by its public sector unions is a party married to government and to bureaucracy.  To the degree that the public unions shape its agenda, the Democrats become a lobby for the servants of the state.  For the unions who represent its employees, the bureaucratic, civil service state is a solution permanently in search of new problems to solve and new worlds to conquer.  The power of the public unions within the party pulls Democrats much farther to the left than they would otherwise go.  This is one reason the Wisconsin reforms stimulated such a powerful and united emotional wave of push back from virtually every section of the left.

What Scott Walker's Victory Signals:  It was a historic defeat for organized labor, and most especially public sector unions.  They chose Wisconsin as the ground on which they would make their stand and make an example out of Walker.  Instead, they were decimated.  In addition, Walker instantly becomes a dominant political player in the GOP, as well as a model to other reform-minded governors.  The loss will also drive a wedge between President Obama and organized labor, which cannot be pleased at the indifference Obama showed toward this race.

Rift Builds Between Obama and Unions.  Though public sector unions throughout the country broke their backs and piggy banks to win him the presidency in 2008, ever the calculating politician willing to throw his supporters under that over-crowded bus, Obama refused to show up and rally for the Wisconsin rank-and-file for fear a loss might give him a bad news cycle or two.

Your union dues:  Money down the drain.
'Kill Scott Walker': Left Unleashes Death Threats.  Public Unions poured tens of millions of dollars into Wisconsin.  This battle was their line in the sand and now they look humiliated after that sand was kicked right in their face.

Teacher's Unions Earn "F" for Wisconsin Recall Abuse.  In Wisconsin and across the nation, public school employee unions spared no kiddie human shields in their battle against GOP Gov. Scott Walker's budget and pension reforms.  Students were the first and last casualties of the ruthless Big Labor war against fiscal discipline.

Ignore the spin: Wisconsin was a disaster for Democrats and President Obama.  Democrats and their union allies spent an astronomical amount on a judicial election, four state legislative recalls and the recall of Governor Walker, only to lose.  The spin has already begun.  On Tuesday [6/5/2012], White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said the Wisconsin recall election "probably won't tell us much about a future race."

The Main Message From Madison: The Jig Is Up.  By far the most amusing and telling result of the thumping the corrupt public-employee unions and out-of-state far-left zealots suffered in Wisconsin is the whining and hand-wringing now being exhibited by a growing collection of liberal pundits, politicians and ultra-wealthy activists who are uniformly saying this is a "major wake-up call for the left, Democrats and unions."  No, it's not.  It's a loud and clear pronouncement that big government and big-government giveaways to people who want something for nothing is over.

Obama's Socialist Allies Defeated in Wisconsin.  About a week after President Obama gave a Medal of Freedom to Dolores Huerta, the honorary chair of Democratic Socialists of America (DSA), the Associated Press (AP) wire service ran a story casting doubt on the claim that Obama himself was a socialist.  This is the same news organization which in 2008 carried a story that failied to mention the smoking-gun evidence that Obama's childhood mentor, Frank Marshall Davis, was a Communist Party member.  If you are suspecting at this point that the AP found Obama not guilty of being a socialist, you would be correct.  This kind of whitewash is what we have come to expect from this influential news organization.

Free Speech Wins in Wisconsin.  It is in the Left's interest to minimize the ability of ordinary Americans to participate in the political process.  The Left controls the most influential media outlets, the major educational institutions, the unions, the government bureaucracies, and other important institutions.  While it is easy to count up the contributions that went to groups supporting Governor Walker in the recall, it is more difficult to put a price tag on the fact that his union critics were permitted to campaign inside high schools (putting fliers into students' backpacks, among other things) or that rank-and-file workers are dragooned by union bosses into the campaign brigades.  What price tag should we attach to the friendly treatment the anti-Walker forces received from the New York Times or MSNBC?

Citizens United Becomes the Left's All-Purpose Excuse.  Blaming Citizens United for the decisive Walker victory is nothing more than a smokescreen to cover up the fact that most Wisconsin voters were tired of 15 separate, very divisive, and angry recall campaigns, all mounted because of unhappiness among some voters with some of Walker's policies since he took office.  Most people think you get your next shot at an elected official when the candidate runs for re-election.  Recalls of governors are more like impeachments — something that is done to address corruption, or other criminal behavior (applicable to most recent governors of neighboring Illinois, for instance).

Union Clout Crumbles.  Democratic pundits in the MSM were prepared for the Walker victory with pre-designated talking points.  Their primary lament was the disparity in funds generated by both sides.  They kept hammering the point that the Walker campaign had an overwhelming 7 to 1 advantage in money.  Never mind that the math showed $45 million for Walker versus $9 million for Barrett:  Which works out to a 5 to 1 gap.  Liberals have never been good at math (for evidence here note the present administration's insistence that $40 billion in annual tax increases will close a $16 trillion deficit.)

Unions Lose Court Battle to Roll Back Gov. Walker's Collective Bargaining Reforms.  A decision issued today by the 7th circuit Court of Appeals says collective bargaining reforms passed by Governor Scott Walker will stand.  Act 10 was the controversial reform law passed in Wisconsin in 2011 after weeks of protests and stalling by Democratic members of the legislature.

Federal Appeals Court upholds Wisconsin union law.  The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit has upheld the Wisconsin union law that was the subject of massive protests in 2011, including a takeover of the State Capitol and widespread threats and acts of intimidation.  The decision was unanimous in most respects.

Several months later...
Teachers Union Decertified in Wisconsin.  Teachers in Kenosha, Wisconsin — the third largest school district in the state — have voted overwhelmingly to free themselves from the clutches of the teachers union, the Kenosha Education Association, which will now disband.  Thanks to the reform bill, Act 10, pushed by Governor Scott Walker, public employee unions are limited to bargaining over base pay, and must be re-certified every year.

Demise: Wisconsin's third-largest school district says no thanks to union representation.  [Governor Scott] Walker did what he said he'd do, he implemented policies that worked, he benefited from the fact that liberals' hysterical predictions of sky-falling never came close to being true, and in the end, he may have permanently changed the political calculus in his state.

Teachers of Third-Largest Wisconsin School District Vote to Decertify Union.  Teachers in Kenosha, Wisconsin have voted to decertify their union, putting a halt to the organization's ability to bargain with the state on behalf of educators.  Kenosha teachers took advantage of the opportunity to jettison the union after Governor Scott Walker's successful implementation of Act 10, a law that limits what unions can bargain for on behalf of members.

Several additional months later...
Prosecutors back off Scott Walker: Not target, no evidence of crime.  After a week of complete media malpractice, in which scurrilous accusations that Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker participated in a "criminal scheme" were plastered all over the headlines, a lead prosecutor has completely backed off. [...] Will the media report the prosecutor's disavowal of a "criminal scheme" with the vigor the media reported the original accusations?  Doesn't look like it.

Media Reporting on Governor Scott Walker a Cacophony of Lies.  The New York Times, all the networks, CNN, MSNBC, and all the other usual suspects chimed in with a deafening cacophony of alarm, using the same "Walker at center of criminal scheme" headlines.  Even Forbes took the bait.  In a year saturated with false, misleading or downright fraudulent misreporting from the left-wing biased mass media, this disgraceful bit of propaganda vies for first place.  The court documents in this formerly secret investigation were not new, and the case has been thrown out of court and declared illegal, not once but twice.

Scott Walker scandal disappears.  I recall former labor secretary Ray Donovan being prosecuted for political reasons and, after being acquitted, asked the press, "Where do I go to get my reputation back"?  Walker would ask the same thing except he knows it's even less likely today to get corrections and retractions from liberal media.

Wisconsin Supreme Court upholds 2011 union law.  Wisconsin's controversial 2011 law that severely limited collective bargaining for public workers, sparked massive protests and drove the failed effort to recall Republican Gov. Scott Walker was upheld Thursday [7/31/2014] by the state's highest court.  The Wisconsin Supreme Court closed the book on the last of the major legal disputes over Act 10, ending a three-year legal struggle with its 5-2 decision.  The decision could energize the political career of Walker, who seeks re-election this year and has not ruled out a 2016 run for president.  "Act 10 has saved Wisconsin taxpayers more than $3 billion," Walker said.  "Today's ruling is a victory for those hardworking taxpayers."

In 5-2 ruling, Supreme Court issues final word on Act 10.  More than three years after its assage sparked massive protests that jammed the Capitol Square, the state Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of a divisive state law that sharply curtailed the collective bargaining rights of most public workers.  In upholding Gov. Scott Walker's signature piece of legislation, the court handed the governor a major victory three months before he seeks re-election.  The decision also cast doubt on the validity of several union contracts negotiated after a lower court found the law unconstitutional.  In its 5-2 decision, the court said public workers in Wisconsin do not have a constitutional right to bargain collectively.

Wisconsin anti-union law: state Supreme Court ruling probably the final say.  Ever since it became law in 2011, Act 10 in Wisconsin — which essentially ended collective bargaining for most public workers — has sparked countless court challenges, generated angry protests at the State Capitol, and fueled a recall campaign of the governor.  A ruling Thursday [7/31/2014] by the state Supreme Court indicates the law will stand, leaving opponents with little choice but to move on.  "This is the end of the pending challenges and is unlikely to be replaced by some persuasive new challenge that hasn't already been attempted," says Charles Franklin, a law professor and polling director at Marquette University in Milwaukee.

Union enrollment plummets for Wisconsin teachers under tough law.  Teachers in Wisconsin's public schools have learned a major lesson from the state's landmark 2011 law neutering public sector unions, with more than a third dropping out of their labor organization.  Given no choice but to join and pay dues to the Wisconsin Education Association Council (WEAC) for decades, teachers have for the last three years been able to opt out.  And that is what tens of thousands have done as a result of Gov. Scott Walker's Wisconsin Budget Repair Bill, also known as Act 10.

More Dirty Tactics in Wisconsin Governor's Race.  [Scroll down]  Four years and hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars later, no evidence of any wrongdoing whatsoever has surfaced about [Governor Scott] Walker.  Two judges — one state and one federal — have ruled against the probe.  The federal judge found the theory unconstitutional; appeals are pending however, and the federal judge's ruling was overturned by the federal appeals court in Chicago.  The Wisconsin head of AFP has filed a countersuit against the district attorney for unconstitutional search, seizure, and harassment after police broke into his home in the middle of the night and confiscated not only his electronic devices but those of his children, searching for "evidence."  In the wake of the countersuit, a whistleblower has come forward from the DA's office to report on record that the probe has largely been fueled by political animus and personal spite:  the DA's wife is an official of the teachers' union who has been terribly upset ever since Walker's administration passed the "Act 10" legislation, which curtailed public employee union power and was a major tool in balancing the state's budget.

Walker Wins Again.  Scott Walker has won every round of his long fight with Big Labor in Wisconsin, but it wasn't until November 4 that he delivered the knockout punch.  In his third gubernatorial election in four years, Walker defeated Democratic challenger Mary Burke by 6 points.  It was the same margin of victory he had in the 2010 Republican wave and just a point shy of his 2012 performance in a union-funded recall.

Anti-Scott Walker prosecutorial skullduggery in Wisconsin exposed.  A huge political scandal is slowly coming to light in Wisconsin, as information comes to light about the conduct of that state's Government Accountability Board (GAB) as it persecuted supporters of Governor Scott Walker, who bravely took on the public employee unions of that state.  The outrageous tactics used included midnight SWAT team raids on Walker's political supporters.

"You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong.  You cannot help the wage earner by pulling down the wage payer.  You cannot further the brotherhood of many by encouraging class hatred.  You cannot help the poor by destroying the rich."

Rev. William J. H. Boetcker, 1916.       

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Updated December 28, 2014.

©2014 by Andrew K. Dart