Wisconsin: Not Just Cheeseheads After All

Who would have thought that the state with the first Socialist governor and subsequent Socialist Party candidate for President, Robert LaFollette, would be the first state to actively attempt to bring the public employee unions under control?  What’s next?  Vermont goes Conservative?

So much of life can be equated to the supply and demand theory of economics.  That is, there’s unlimited demand for things, but always a limited supply and when demand outstrips supply, there’s friction.  This concept can be applied to the present fiscal situation that Wisconsin, and all states for that matter, face.  They are out of money.  Tax revenues, that is, supply, have outstripped the demand for services.  The public unions, in fact all unions, have been feeding at the trough of the nation’s largesse for years.  Governors have conceded “rights” (also known as privileges in the real world) to them in an attempt to keep these spoiled brats, for lack of a better term, happy.

But state goverments are struggling to provide basic services, and in order to remain fiscally solvent, something has to give.  Credit Governor Walker with having the cajones (a Texas term for chutzpah), to admit to his state and the rest of the country that this has to stop.

The consequences of what’s playing out in Madison are significant.  Does a special interest group get to dictate how much of the fiscal pie they get to keep?  Or does the duly-elected governor decided how to run his state?  And if the unions fall in Wisconsin, what about all the other states that are stuggling to balance their budget and keep taxes down?  And at what point do the taxpayers, the customers, the folks actually paying the bills, get to decide how much they’re willing to pay for under-performance?  I don’t get to demand a raise if I don’t perform in my job.  How are the unions any different?

I know the union contracts were negotiated in good faith, but the times are different.  A job with fewer benefits is better than no job at all.  The supply of money is limited, and they don’t get to demand more than what there is available.  And the people who actually do the paying should get to call the shots.

I wish you the best, Governor Walker.  To quote Simon and Garfunkel, “…our nation turns it’s lonely eyes to you…”.

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