Monday, December 20, 2010

It's going to be a long 4 years in Wisconsin

Scott Walker hasn't even been sworn in as Wisconsin's governor but he's already put the kibosh on a high-speed rail project, rejecting $810 million in federal funds that would have created thousands of jobs. Walker, the Milwaukee County executive, thinks that's a victory. Go figure.

Now Wisconsin state Rep. Robin Vos of Rochester is promoting misnamed right-to-work-for-less legislation. We all know what that's all about: payback to the zillionaires and corporations who donated to their political campaigns. Bob Peterson, a member of the executive board of the Milwaukee Teachers Education Association, hit the nail on the head in an op-ed today for the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel. Writes Peterson,

Such anti-democratic laws are nothing more than a cover for pro-corporate interests who know that weak unions and low wages can build ever-higher profits.
Right-to-work-for-less is part of an overall war on unions in Wisconsin. Writes Joel McNally at The Cap Times,
Walker lobbed the first grenade announcing he would consider everything from decertifying unions representing state workers to rewriting labor laws so the state would no longer be required to bargain with them. That was followed by even more extreme statements from anti-union Republican legislators threatening to turn Wisconsin into one of those low-wage, red-neck, right-to-work states.
Wisconsin isn't alone, unfortunately. As many as 11 other states are pushing right-to-work-for-less laws or ballot initiatives. Fighting these union-busting efforts is one of the Teamsters' top priorities for 2011.