Winconsin Democrats are still in an undisclosed location, while Republicans in the state legislature vote to implement a VoterID system that will negatively affect Democratic registrations.
You can send a pizza to the protestors in Madison by going here: http://www.ianspizza.com/
Balloon Juice via Jack & Jill Politics:
A few days ago, Josh Marshall over at TPM published a map of how various States treat collective bargaining for public employees’ unions:
There are some obvious patterns when one considers this map (including the Red State/Blue State memes of recent years).
Deeper pattens emerge when you look at a map of Free States and Slave States as of 1857 when the Dred Scott Decision opened all US Territories (and all Free States) to Slavery:
What thing becomes clear—as you consider the modern
RepublicanConfederate Party’s effort to attack workers, Unions, the Middle Class and their rights—is that their focus is all about the theft of labor. Stealing the labor of folks is a sure fire way to get rich and it has been since, well, forever. Fighting efforts to protect people from the theft of their labor is what the modern so-called Conservative and/or Gliberterian movements are all about.
What made slavery so damn profitable was the theft of labor. It served two important purposes: 1) Free labor from your slaves, and 2) the labor you steal from your slaves helps to suppress the demand for higher wages from the labor of workers that you must pay.
Slavery offered an elite class multiple ways to cut cost and steal labor. This system of labor theft has experienced two great threats in the last 150 years. The first was the Civil War, which ended the above ground buying and selling of humans and the theft of their labor. This was a major victory in the long fight for justice, but it was not long before gains were pushed backed.
Then there's Ezra Klein, who correctly identifies the problem in Wisconsin: "it's about power, not money":
America's various governmental entities are looking for ways to avoid defaulting on their debt -- or at least defaulting on their debt to the powerful. That addendum is important, because one of the strategies that's emerging is to default on debt to the less powerful, the people who don't have the power to wreck our economy.Ending on a lighter note, Jonathan Grey via the MaddowBlog takes note of the pop culture influence in the Madison protestors:
This is a crucial fact about the economy, and one often underplayed by economists: power matters. It's worth more, in many cases, than money. And that's what's really at issue in Wisconsin. It's why Gov. Scott Walker is uninterested in taking concessions from the unions on wages and benefits if they don't come alongside concessions on collective bargaining. What he wants isn't a change in the balance of payments. It's a change in the balance of power.
The deal Wisconsin made with its state employees was simple: Accept lower wages than you could get in the private sector now in return for better pensions and health-care benefits when you retire. Now Walker wants to renege on that deal.
Rather than stiff the banks, in other words, he wants to stiff the teachers -- but the crucial twist he's added, the one that's sent tens of thousands of workers into the streets, is that he wants to make sure they can't fight back once he does it.