Last night Ken and Alicia stood on the bridge with about 75 – 100 other people protesting the governor’s budget and the actions taken by the government. Mom and I drove by several times, honking to show our support. Mom took pictures (of course) and then I took her home.
Ken and I went to the information meeting. I was really hoping that a republican or two would show up so we could have an intelligent debate. However, they didn’t. It was a room full of like minded people. I was afraid that it would become a pep rally. It did not. I heard intelligent questions put to a former representative and a union leader.
There were people from all sorts of jobs – teachers, farmers, secretaries, and business owners. It was a moving and intelligent conversation about the affects of what this budget will mean to so many people.
I’ve always considered Whitewater to be conservative and Republican. The good ole boys club is definitely in affect there. Last night I was proud to say I grew up there. People came out for honest and open discussion. It is too bad the Republicans didn’t show up, I think it would be good for them to actually hear what these people have to say.
One other comment – there were things said about a rep – I don’t know if they are true so I’m not going to repeat them. However, here is my opinion on an elected officials job. If you run for office, you better be prepared to speak to and meet with all the people in your district whether they voted for you or not. Your job as an elected official is to represent the people in your district. Your job is to hear their opinions and desires when it comes to a bill or topic before the legislative review. Your job is to LISTEN to these and determine what the majority of those people want. Then your job is to vote based on the majority of those people. All of this is whether you agree with what these people want or not. They are the ones who you are standing for. It isn’t your opinion that counts – it is THEIR opinions that count.
If you can’t do that, then you should not be in office. If you can’t listen to everyone and determine what the majority of people want, then you have no right to sit in Madison or Washington as a representative. Our government is meant to be a government of the people by the people. It is a founding idealism and if you as an individual can’t follow that – then don’t run for office. I think a lot of our representatives have forgotten that. It isn’t about who gave you money to run but about the people and what their needs are.
Today we start again with work. The unions are calling for people to go to Madison. It will be interesting to see how many keep showing up. This is a furlough day for most state employees (not me) so the potential is there for a large number of employees to go to the Capitol. There is a rock concert in support of the unions at 5 pm tonight.
I feel like we have two very stubborn two year olds fighting over a bone. Neither is willing to concede anything. Yet the ones who suffer are those affected by it. If we allow this bill to pass this Governor will have unprecedented power and the unions will be gone.
I’m still supporting the Democrats. I hope they stay out of the state until the Governor realizes that he has to negotiate. Come to the table and have a discussion.
I watched a news conference he had on line and was appalled by the stuff he was saying. It sounded very much to me that he wanted to look at everyone’s base pay (once he rams this bill down our throats) and negotiate those down. I’m already taking a pay cut – how much more does he want?
He said that he wouldn’t impose furloughs but once the unions are busted he will have no one to stop him. He said he wouldn’t lay off large numbers of people but again once the unions are gone what is to stop him? I don’t trust him. I think if this bill passes I could very well lose my job or end up taking a significant pay cut.
I don’t know how this will play out in the long run but hopefully we won’t have to give up our collective bargaining so we can keep some of our protection.
I’m not a political person – yes I know I’ve posted so much this week on the issues going on but under normal circumstances I’m just not. I don’t vote by party lines. I don’t discuss my votes. I vote – every election. I despair that our politician will ever get what is needed for our country.
Today though, I was PROUD of our state Democrat senators. The Republicans and Governor have closed their minds and their ears to the pleas of the workers in the state. Walker said he had 8,000 emails supporting what he is doing. How many did he have wanting it to stop? How many people have protested – somewhere around 50,000.
I watched the national programs tonight – they were amusing. They also got to the heart of the matter. I think this is the first time I’ve heard the other side of the story. It has been the Republicans BLASTING away at the “evil” state workers and unions.
The overly dramatic presentation of the information was a bit much (maybe because I’m from the Midwest) but maybe that will start people thinking. Paul Ryan is an idiot. He accused the protesters of being violent. I say come to Madison and see for yourself. The Madison police had only good things to say about the protesters. Apparently Ryan thinks the teachers are a bunch of violent radical people. Well they are radical – they want to keep their rights.
If Walker and his cronies have their way, Wisconsin will become a state of haves and have nots. It isn’t the state workers who have. It will be the corporations, big business, and the politicians who have. The workers – everyone else will be a have not. State worker (those that don’t already have second jobs) will be looking for a second job.
I hope the Democrats drive their point home and stick together. They are doing what’s right and I intend to support them.
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