My Thoughts on a Fireside Chat

Posted: February 23, 2011 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , ,

Last night Governor Walker sat down and had a chat with the state. He explained in detail what the budget repair bill will do to help this state along with explaining why collective bargaining is not necessary for state employees. Governor Walker was very kind and fair to our government workers, saying he respects them for the great job that they do. That may be the only point in his “chat” that I disagreed with him. As a mom of 2 boys (one of whom is getting ready to enter school) I have now lost ALL respect for the teachers who would be teaching him. They walked out on the job. How am I supposed to trust them now, how am I supposed to know that my sons won’t be abandoned when the teachers don’t get their way, throw a tantrum and then eventually walk out? I digress, that is another topic for another day.

This bill is about saving the state money, getting us out of debt, the debt that was left to us by our prior governor, Jim Doyle aka Diamond Jim. He used bailout money to patch up his own budget short falls and then left us in the hole big time once it was time for him to leave office. As Governor Walker puts it THE STATE IS BROKE! We have nothing left to offer. It is the job of our politicians to make difficult decisions, that is why we elect them. This state elected Governor Walker to get the job done of getting us out of debt and he is trying to do so, but now cannot because of 14 ELECTED officials who refuse to come to work and do what they were elected and paid to do. This is what truly sickens me. They consider leaving noble, I consider it cowardly. Well, how are their constituents going to feel when the first 1,500 workers get laid off because the elected failed to show up for work? Governor Walker is trying to save jobs and the fleebagging 14 are protecting union interests and “union rights”.

I know I’m going long here, but just one more point. The unions keep talking about their rights being taken away, well what about the rights of the average Joe taxpayer? What about my rights? What about my right to not have my taxes raised? They won’t talk about that because they are willing to throw the majority of us under the bus just to save a few. Well screw that. The silent majority (us) needs to speak up now and tell the unions where to shove it…I can think of a few places.

I am posting Governor Walker’s speech on here for those of you who didn’t see it. In his words, may God Bless you all.


  1. GW says:

    I agree the teachers shouldn’t have left school to protest, however I don’t think that some people voiceing a very valid complaint in a marginally inappropriate way is reason to lose faith in what is in reality one of the best public school systems in the country, and it got that way by hard working teachers getting FAIR compensation. In many rural areas of wisconsin teachers live barely above the poverty line.
    Secondly, there is a large difference between public and private sector employees. Permanently removing the bargaining rights of public sector employees, especially teachers is not a good idea for the following main reason. Suspending them temporarily until the budget hits a certain long run balanced threshold i can agree with but permanent removal i cannot.
    As a private sector employee you have choices of employers in a good economy, hence why i specify suspending is ok. The ability to choose from different employers is tantamount to or equivalent to being able to fight for benefits. For many public sector employees government is essentialy the only employment option for them and they trained for a career path of high benefits and low salary. To say they can’t negotiate how they wish to be compensated is silly and foolish. Putting limits on compensation package raises, saying that overall compensation including benefits cannot grow beyond a threshold is ok, saying you cant express to us how you prefer that compensation when and IFF it is an equal cost to the taxpayer is not in your right.

    • How do you figure that Milwaukee is one of the best public school system in the country. Our students are lagging behind in math and reading, two very critical skills in the real world. I don’t hear anyone saying that hard working teachers shouldn’t get a fair salary. I know bad teachers, and I know good teachers.

      What I think you are failing to understand is that bargaining rights are not necessary anymore in the public sector there are laws in place to protect them. Shouldn’t it be the choice of the public worker whether or not they want to join the union? I met plenty of teachers in Madison on Saturday who were bullied into joining who didn’t want to. The teachers chose the career path, they knew what they were getting into so don’t expect me to feel sorry for the poor public worker who is not happy with that he has to now pay part of his pension and benefits. People in the real world have been doing it for a long time. It’s time they suck it up and start to take on some of the burden too. The state is broke. BROKE BROKE BROKE (that means there is no money!). Collective bargaining is a process (which usually takes months and months) here that would have done nothing because the state has nothing to offer, nothing. There is nothing else to it except that. He’s not busting the unions, he’s making it optional and there is nothing wrong with that.

      Everyone is so focused on the rights of the union workers that they are forgetting that the rest of us schmucks have rights too, and the second we express them we are labeled as Nazi’s and targets of union attacks. This is not acceptable. I will keep voicing my opinion because someone has to speak up for the silent majority.

      • tt says:

        1) Wisconsin not milwaukee is one of the best public school systems in the country. Milwaukee needs work absolutly true, however as much of the problem comes from parents as it does from bad teachers.
        Secondly you ignored my argument as to why collective bargaining is ok, i understand we are not in the 1930’s when work conditions can actually kill people, but if you are able to bargain for how you wish to be compensated when IT COSTS THE SAME, an essential specific and ignored part of my argument then i see no problem with collective bargaining. Placing limits on total compensation package increases i could support.
        Third off unions have to be choosen by the majority, and us law makes it very difficult to initially unionize so the small price they pay for the union is reasonable and there are two prices you can choose the member and non-member price.
        I understand unions can cuase inneficiency but when the government is essentialy a monopoly employer the people who work for them should have the right to bargain.
        Again your argument that the state has nothing to offer is not a counter argument as I said i support temporarily suspending rights so as to balance the budget, but IF YOU WANT THEM TO TAKE PAYCUTS IN HARD TIMES THEY SHOULD HAVE THE ABILITY TO GET RAISES IN GOOD TIMES.

        You ignored my argument and actually managed to further support it

      • If unions were so necessary at the public sector how come federal employees don’t have them?

  2. tt says:

    Ignorance of fact is not an argument, opinions are one thing but a simple google search will show you that Over 100.000 do, check out this website the federal employees union.
    As I said before, it is most important when government is able to act as a monopoly employer that employees be allowed to organize, as federal law protects you against trusts. When either the jobskill is rare, or highly versatile this is not important. But in those with skills pertanant only to, or nearly so, government the bargaining rights are essenstial.
    I also think that it is both essential and fair that the total value of their compensation package not be able to increase more than some agreed upon threshold amount, meaning that if they wish to split this in a different fashion than the employer offers originally i dont see the difference..
    Last of all, most federal jobs I know of such as military, FBI, and a host of other organizations have health insurance that trumps that of most state and local government employees.
    I believe you can balance a budget, and even cut salaries, in the form of higher benefit costs without striping unions of there bargaining rights.

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