Ohio Democrats this week introduced into a divided state legislature a new bill that would allow Ohio citizens to recall Governor John Kasich and other legislatures. The state has been in an ideological upheaval for months after Kasich's budget bill was introduced, similar to the Wisconsin bill that has received incredible national attention for stripping unions of their collective bargaining rights, and eventually signed April 2nd after some concessions were made by the Republican-held Assembly and Senate.
While Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan prepares to shut down the federal government to prove that government is bad, analysts say the radical agenda of Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker suffered a major set back today as his good friend incumbent Justice David Prosser was defeated for Wisconsin Supreme Court.
Now, let me say as I move to my conclusion that we've got to give ourselves to this struggle until the end. Nothing would be more tragic than to stop at this point, in Memphis. We've got to see it through. And when we have our march, you need to be there. Be concerned about your brother. You may not be on strike. But either we go up together, or we go down together. –- Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in his last speech in Memphis
Wisconsin continues to spin out of control and a constitutional crisis looms as a judge this week again ordered Walker's administration to halt implementation of his bill stripping Wisconsin public workers of collective bargaining rights. Walker's team moved to publish the law in defiance of the court order last Friday night and began implementation of the bill on Saturday. These actions prompted an irate judge this week to clarify her previous standing order, making it "crystal clear" that "further implementation of the Act is enjoined."
William Cronon is a professor of history, geography and environmental studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He is the prize winning author of many books such as Changes in the Land: Indians, Colonists, and the Ecology of New England, which revolutionized the study of environmental history. He is known as a guy with such a deep and abiding love of Wisconsin and its traditions that he leads the "get to know us" bus tour of the state offered to new faculty each year. Glaciers, rocks and history are on his agenda; politics and cheese he leaves to fellow-Wisconsinite and Capital Times editor John Nichols.
But this mild-mannered professor kicked a hornet's nest this week with an op-ed in the New York Times on Governor Scott Walker, and the push back was immediate. The Wisconsin GOP is now demanding his emails.
The reign of lawlessness continues in Wisconsin.
Last week, a local court issued a stay temporarily blocking the implementation of Governor Scott Walker's radical proposal to do away with most collective bargaining rights for public workers and cripple labor's ability to collect union dues. The court put a halt to the publication of the bill (an act performed by the Secretary of State), so there could be a hearing on whether or not the Wisconsin Senate violated the state's strong open meetings law in its rush to ram the bill through.
On the day that the bill passed the Wisconsin Assembly effectively ending 50 years of collective bargaining in Wisconsin and eviscerating the ability of public unions to raise money through dues, a new front opened in the battle for the future of Wisconsin families.
Bagpipes blaring, hundreds of firefighters walked across the street from the Wisconsin Capitol building, stood outside the Marshall and Ilsley Bank (M&I Bank) and played a few tunes -- loudly. Later, a group of firefighter and consumers stopped back in at the bank to make a few transactions. One by one they closed their accounts and withdrew their life savings, totaling approximately $190,000. See a video clip. After the last customer left, the bank quickly closed its doors, just in case the spontaneous "Move Your Money" moment caught fire.
MADISON--New political ads by corporate and CEO-funded groups have been flooding Wisconsin repeating misinformation from the controversial Walker administration about the budget and labor rights. The total sum spent is not yet known. Labor rights groups have responded to the crisis with some ads to make sure the people know that Walker and his corporate allies are refusing to negotiate and are determined to destroy labor rights. Here are some of these ads:
On February 28, ABC World News with Diane Sawyer premiered a TV series called "Made in America" that ostensibly encourages viewers to buy American-made products to help spur U.S. job growth. In the first episode, a reporter tours the home of an average American family, discovering that most of the family's belongings were made in foreign countries. To illustrate how remiss the family has been in buying American, a moving crew takes everything out of the house that is made in a foreign country. The crew rips out the family's stove, carts off their furniture, beds and refrigerator, and takes virtually everything in the home away except a small vase with a flower in it. The family returns, shocked, to see their empty home. The series blames consumers for not purchasing American-made products, while failing to mention how major American corporations choose to manufacture their products overseas. Also unmentioned is the fact that ABC's parent company, Disney, manufactures toys, including Mickey Mouse memorabilia and other goods, in Chinese factories. The show obscures the fact that consumers don't choose where the products offered in their local stores are made, and doesn't discuss the limited American-made products offered at ubiquitous big-box appliance, electronics, furniture, drug and toy stores.
Chances are you've never heard of Peter Shumlin, who last month was sworn in as the 81st governor or Vermont. That's about to change.