news early this week that Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker was
dropping out of the running for the Republican nomination for
president was a surprise to some, but not those who followed his
you have dropped to one-half of 1 percent in the polls, it should be
a good clue that it’s time to go. For a change, Walker made
the best decision of recent years by taking himself out of
contention, especially since he was next-to-last in the polls,
beating out only the man who blathered more than he did, Governor
Bobby Jindal of Louisiana.
reasons given for his self-elimination were many, at least according
to those who were covering his campaign for the press: could not
maintain the fast-paced schedule that a candidate needs to maintain;
might not have wanted to put his family through the rigors of a
campaign (his two sons reportedly are still in college); was one of
the least affluent of the 17 Republicans who were arrayed at the
opening of the primary race, and other reasons.
of the reasons that must have helped him plummet in the polls is his
threat made just a short time before he withdrew, that he would do
the same to workers in the nation as he has done in Wisconsin. He
repeated over and over again in his home state that he took on the
workers and beat them, by taking away their rights to form effective
unions. The formation of unions has been the way workers have been
able to bring themselves up the income scale from wage slaves to what
is now considered the middle class (although, this class is said to
be steadily moving downward in America).
working class Americans who are Republicans should have been somewhat
alarmed when he made his pronouncement about the similarity between
workers wanting to organize into unions and the Islamic State.
Remember that? On the campaign trail, he was asked what he would do
about ISIS (another name for Islamic State) and he reminded his
audience that he has had great experience in that realm, mostly by
defeating 100,000 Wisconsin workers who had rallied in Madison, in
protest of his removing the right for most public workers to
collective bargaining laws adopted by various states over the past 40
years gave public workers the right to negotiate their wages and
working conditions and eventually brought them up to the living
standards of private sector workers. And, since the relentless
attacks by Corporate America and right-wing politicians over so many
decades have reduced private sector workers (their unions) to a
shadow of their former selves, public sector workers have even
surpassed some of them.
where the attack on government workers and their unions gained some
traction. Those in power over our politics and economy have become
expert in dividing groups of workers from each other. They’re
experts at it, and they are assisted by legislative bodies at the
state and national levels and in the courts, as well.
smelling some of that worker alienation, felt that he could take his
giant step in his broad-based attack on workers in the Badger State.
It didn’t hurt that he was supported by the Koch brothers,
David and Charles, inheritors of Koch Industries, one of the nation’s
premier polluters and promoters of the great American Right Wing.
Their hands are in the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC),
a group largely funded by the nation’s millionaires and
billionaires (like them), which presents model legislation to its
legislator members who are members of Congress and many state
legislatures, who dutifully present the bills as their own and get
lots of them passed. Usually, their model bills are anti-worker
(anti-union) or to facilitate further poisoning of the environment,
or both. Such is the work of ALEC.
inheritors of billions of dollars, the Koch brothers have been very
liberal with their money, when they thought they would get much in
return. That’s why they or their front groups have supported
Walker for some time. They apparently saw that he was
self-destructing on the primary trail, so much of that money dried
up. Now, David and Charles can look for one of the other political
go-fer struggling to be president to carry out their agenda that is
so destructive to the democracy that remains in the U.S.
people like David and Charles or Scotty Walker say they want to curb
(destroy) unions, just remember that they are talking about damning
workers to ever-lower standards of living. Also, remember that, with
the rise of unions in American workplaces after World War II, there
came a rise in what is now seen as the dwindling middle class:
Rising unionization equals rising of living standards for those who
are smart enough to join the union. Any time anyone, rich or poor,
says that they just want to curb the power of unions, know that they
are referring to slashing the potential power of workers.
vast funds that have been expended to drive wedges between large
groups of workers have been largely successful. ALEC and Koch money
are helped in no small measure by the politicians who do their
bidding (a majority in most legislative bodies, large and small).
more than a century, unions have been the way to provide a decent
standard of living for workers, their families, and their
communities. They have been the way for black workers to gain some
equality in the workplace and society, and they have provided a way
up for others, as well, including Hispanics and immigrants, in
general. It is this upward mobility of the workers that Walker and
the billionaire class whose water he carries, who are trying to keep
workers down, and when they can shed the effects of the prejudicial
propaganda that has been put out there for generations and when they
can join together, the result will be a more equitable society and
one with less rancor and hatred. When there is solidarity among
workers, in general, the Walkers and Kochs of the world will be
now, though, it’s good riddance to Walker the candidate. He can
go back home and try to undo some of the grave damage he’s done
to his state. But, we’re still looking at 15, or so, other GOP
candidates and most of them are beauties like Walker.