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Posted at 1:23 PM ET, 02/23/2011

Bipartisan consensus behind public employee bargaining rights still in force -- among voters

By Greg Sargent

Yesterday USA Today made a big splash when the paper released a Gallup poll finding that 61 percent of Americans nationwide oppose Governor Scott Walker's plan to roll back the bargaining rights of public employees. Today Gallup has released a partisan breakdown of those numbers, and it's striking:

gallupbargainingrights.JPG

Republicans are the only group that favors rolling back public employee bargaining rights, but even among them, a sizable chunk -- 41 percent -- is opposed. An overwhelming 62 percent of independents is also opposed.

As I noted here yesterday, while many assumed that conservatives would have an easy time scapegoating public employees amid our economic woes, the drive to roll back their right to bargain collectively -- a bedrock union organizing principle that has been supported by bipartisan consensus for decades -- may be pushing the envelope too far.

Indeed, the above poll supports the notion that such a bipartisan consensus, while diminished, may still exist, at least among voters. Walker's proposal has turned the conversation from one about Wisconsin's budgetary needs into something far more ideological, an argument over fundamental workers' rights, perhaps pushing the conversation onto turf where the right may no longer have the upper hand.

Polling like the above could serve as a note of caution to other goverments mulling similar efforts to roll back public employee bargaining rights. Indeed, with GOP governors like Mitch Daniels and Rick Scott publicly eschewing the most draconian anti-union proposals, we're already seeing signs of trepidation ripple out from the events in Wisconsin.

UPDATE, 1:37 p.m.: To get a clearer sense of just how much Walker's overreach may have unintentionally transformed the political landscape, go back and read this story by Ben Smith and Maggie Haberman, who were among the first to flag the coming war on public employees. As you can see from that story, at the time scapegoating them seemed like it would be an easy thing to do.

By Greg Sargent  | February 23, 2011; 1:23 PM ET
Categories:  Labor  
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Comments

Wow, that's pretty high support...even with the loaded question.

Getting rid of their bargining rights WON'T reduce the deficit - yet this question makes it seem like it's a legitimate solution to be discussed. If it wasn't framed this way, and instead simply asked about the removal of the rights themselves, the support would probably be much higher.

Not only that, but I think the support for the public employees would also be higher if they included other unions that would face losing their rights, such as prison gaurds.

I bet if you alter the question to take those two factors into account...we'd be looking at support above 70% amoung all adults, and even a majority of Republicans.

Posted by: TheBBQChickenMadness | February 23, 2011 1:30 PM | Report abuse

"publicly eschewing the most draconian anti-union proposals"

man what a mouthful

But yes, Mitch Daniels threw Scott Walker under the clothesline.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 23, 2011 1:31 PM | Report abuse

An alternative headline from the same poll:

"Bipartisan consensus against tax increases still in force -- among voters"

"Bottom Line

As long as state governments can't print money, and their debt ratios are too high to continue borrowing, state lawmakers will be forced to consider raising taxes, cutting state programs, and reducing worker costs as three primary ways to balance their books. Americans don't love any of these choices, but cutting programs garners the least opposition, mainly because a solid majority of Republicans favor it. Raising taxes is the most unpopular, and is opposed by majorities of all party groups. Crafting budget policies that affect state workers may be especially difficult. The public isn't eager to see these fellow residents lose pay and benefits or union rights, but they aren't convinced unions are good for states either."


http://www.gallup.com/poll/146276/Scaling-Back-State-Programs-Least-Three-Fiscal-Evils.aspx

Posted by: jnc4p | February 23, 2011 1:33 PM | Report abuse

Did you see what those hacks at Fox's morning show did with the Gallup poll? They reversed the numbers those dupes.

http://www.rawstory.com/rawreplay/2011/02/fox-reverses-poll-results-to-portray-public-as-anti-union/

No wonder Fox viewers are so confused. If those reporting it can't get their story straight, how are the viewers supposed to know wtf is really going on.

When does Fox lose it's press credentials and has it's seat in the WH press corpse removed? Ed Henry? Anyone home?

Posted by: mikefromArlington | February 23, 2011 1:35 PM | Report abuse

Or even better:

"Solid majority of Democrats oppose all options to reduce state budget deficits"

"As state budgets are hammered out across the country, leaders may find it more difficult to find solutions that are acceptable to rank-and-file Democrats than to Republicans. That's because majorities of Democrats (approximately 6 in 10) oppose each of the three main strategies tested for reducing deficits. By contrast, more than three-fourths of Republicans (78%) oppose raising taxes, but majorities favor eliminating or reducing certain state programs (65%) and reducing worker pay and benefits (51%).

Independents show solid opposition to tax increases, but are about evenly divided in their reactions to reductions in state programs and worker pay."

http://www.gallup.com/poll/146276/Scaling-Back-State-Programs-Least-Three-Fiscal-Evils.aspx

Posted by: jnc4p | February 23, 2011 1:36 PM | Report abuse

Oh, I gotta steel this from someone.

Fraudulent Oligarchical Xenophobes

Posted by: mikefromArlington | February 23, 2011 1:36 PM | Report abuse

blah blah blah, what the American people want, blah blah blah

Posted by: DDAWD | February 23, 2011 1:41 PM | Report abuse

Reality Check;

Taking away the teachers collective bargaining rights, with their local school boards, does not add any revenues to the state budget. The majority of people understand that, but of course we have the usual right wing suspects still trying to sell that snake oil, because they just want to bust the Unions.

Posted by: Liam-still | February 23, 2011 1:45 PM | Report abuse

Walker is supposedly having a press conference at 2:30 Central to address the phone calls.

Good luck with that, Little Hosni.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | February 23, 2011 1:48 PM | Report abuse

"Taking away the teachers collective bargaining rights, with their local school boards, does not add any revenues to the state budget."

Neither does discussing with oil Oligarchs bashing those same teachers over the head with bats and starving the state Senator's families by not giving them salary.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | February 23, 2011 1:52 PM | Report abuse

This IS a huge news day, the nerds at Caltech scored their first conference victory since 1985. Go dweebs!

Posted by: shrink2 | February 23, 2011 1:56 PM | Report abuse

Now that Walker has revealed that he can not be trusted to keep his word, it will be even harder for him to get the Democrats to return to the state.

Hosni Walker is still my leading nominee for to win this year's Stupid Koch Sucker trophy.

Posted by: Liam-still | February 23, 2011 1:57 PM | Report abuse

This IS a huge news day, the nerds at Caltech scored their first conference victory since 1985. Go dweebs!

Posted by: shrink2 | February 23, 2011 1:56 PM |

And how does that make you feel?

Posted by: Liam-still | February 23, 2011 1:58 PM | Report abuse

"Did you see what those hacks at Fox's morning show did with the Gallup poll? They reversed the numbers those dupes.

http://www.rawstory.com/rawreplay/2011/02/fox-reverses-poll-results-to-portray-public-as-anti-union/

No wonder Fox viewers are so confused. If those reporting it can't get their story straight, how are the viewers supposed to know wtf is really going on.

When does Fox lose it's press credentials and has it's seat in the WH press corpse removed? Ed Henry? Anyone home?

Posted by: mikefromArlington"

You have to wonder what the point of lying about poll results is. It's one thing to lie about the facts to try and sway opinion, but what does lying about a poll accomplish. Like in 2008, I can see why they would call Obama a Muslim terrorist constantly, but what does showing Rasmussen polls do? Even if FOX News came out with a poll saying that 75% of Americans are voting McCain that's not going to change that all those people would go and vote for Obama.

Posted by: DDAWD | February 23, 2011 1:59 PM | Report abuse

Hey Liam, the point you've made twenty times today wasn't lost on State Sen. Larson. :)

""On a tactical level, however, he called the prank -- pulled by the website Buffalo Beast -- a major blunder on Walker's behalf. "He just gave it all away right there," Larson insisted.

In particular, Larson pointed to a portion of the roughly 20-minute call in which the governor talked about getting the senate Democrats back to the state by promising to hold negotiations, only to quickly pass the anti-union legislation while a quorum was reached.

"The part that really had my eyebrows up is the idea that he would trick us to come back for a compromise and use that as an excuse for passing it," said Larson. "He is such a hypocrite because he is saying what we are doing is an affront to democracy and then he is going to trick us into coming back?"

"To anyone who was thinking, 'Well they wouldn't try anything shady,' this puts an end to that idea," he added.""

Posted by: lmsinca | February 23, 2011 2:03 PM | Report abuse

John Cole just put together a devastating recount of Walker-Koch ties.

http://www.balloon-juice.com/2011/02/23/sometimes-we-call-them-kickbacks-other-times-we-call-it-the-invisible-hand/

Time to go for the jugular on this one.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | February 23, 2011 2:06 PM | Report abuse

DDAWD, it is a psychiatry thing, people are heirarchical herd animals, like baboons. If they see some source they recognize as Authority that says most people want this or that thing, they'd have to have "critical thinking skills" in order not to go along. That is where education (I know, elitist alert) comes in. Thinking isn't for everyone.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 23, 2011 2:08 PM | Report abuse

@shrink2: "That is where education (I know, elitist alert) comes in. Thinking isn't for everyone."

But it is awesome. You guys should try it sometime!

ba-dum-dum!

I kid, I'm a kidder. I know you're always thinking. Now, what you're thinking about . . . well, this is a family blog!

ba-dum-dum!

I got a million of 'em.

:)

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | February 23, 2011 2:09 PM | Report abuse

Club for Growth is issuing fake APB's in WI.

http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.php?az=view_all&address=439x450949

Posted by: mikefromArlington | February 23, 2011 2:13 PM | Report abuse

@Liam: "Now that Walker has revealed that he can not be trusted to keep his word, it will be even harder for him to get the Democrats to return to the state."

Actually, he just gave them 100% justification for their strategy. He's neutered (in my opinion) most of the arguments against the Democrats heading out-of-state. By his own admission, he was planning to trick 'em and negotiate in bad faith.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | February 23, 2011 2:13 PM | Report abuse

Someone else just said they heard the APB on the radio.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | February 23, 2011 2:14 PM | Report abuse

"DDAWD, it is a psychiatry thing, people are heirarchical herd animals, like baboons. If they see some source they recognize as Authority that says most people want this or that thing, they'd have to have "critical thinking skills" in order not to go along. That is where education (I know, elitist alert) comes in. Thinking isn't for everyone.

Posted by: shrink2"

Yeah, true. I guess the kindest thing you can say about 2 1/2 Men is that a lot of people watch it. More honest than saying it's "good" or "funny" or "not stupid"

But the Conservative audience is probably the best one to use the herd mentality. All Sean Hannity has to do is almost think about something and it will appear all over this board.

Posted by: DDAWD | February 23, 2011 2:17 PM | Report abuse

"""Did you see what those hacks at Fox's morning show did with the Gallup poll? They reversed the numbers those dupes."""

Omfg.

IDIOTS!!!

Shared the article on FB.

Unreal.

Posted by: ronnieandrush | February 23, 2011 2:17 PM | Report abuse

Woohoo!!!

Google Hot Trends!

1. umami burger
2. defense of marriage act
3. deron williams trade
4. marine corps marathon
5. buffalo beast

C'mon #1. Retweets! Googles! Reposts! Let's go #1!

Posted by: mikefromArlington | February 23, 2011 2:21 PM | Report abuse

Any predictions on what Gov. "I Am Not Machiavelli" Walker will say at his press conference?

Besides, "woof, woof, Master Koch". And besides, "I am your loyal poodle, Master Koch". "Look, Master, I can do tricks".

Posted by: 12BarBluesAgain | February 23, 2011 2:26 PM | Report abuse

From Benen:

"THE CHEESE STANDS ALONE.... "

The Republican Party's anti-union efforts were supposed to spread from Wisconsin to Indiana, and it appeared that the Hoosiers were in for a similar confrontation. Indeed, like their Wisconsin brethren, a group of Indiana Democrats fled to Illinois yesterday to deny the GOP majority the necessary quorum to proceed on a related bill.

By late yesterday, however, Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels (R) announced his opposition to the proposal, and today, the bill died.

Republicans have killed a controversial labor bill that has sparked a Democrat work-stoppage and large union protests at the Statehouse. [...]

Senate President Pro Tempore David Long, R-Fort Wayne, said that he, Bosma, R-Indianapolis, and Daniels all agree that the matter instead should be studied by a legislative committee later this year.

The so-called "right to work" bill would bar companies and unions from negotiating a contract that would require non-union employees to pay a fee for representation.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | February 23, 2011 2:26 PM | Report abuse

Wow, the left once again displays its true persona.

a while ago it was Sarah Palin who was in the left's gun sites. Now it is the WI govenor. The common thread? both of them oppose liberalism.

It is further clear that the left cannot win the argument on merits. The Democrats stand to lose a significant source of campaign fundage and they will fight tooth and claw to keep it.

The union bosses understand the stakes here and they are more than willing to dupe their own membership and the voters to avoid the catastrophe that looms before them.

As I noted yesterday the NEA is a national player because they collect an enormous amount of union dues that they then send to Democrat pols who in turn grant the union members lavish compensation some of which the NEA extracts.

If wonder what the honest answer to this question is: What language in the proposed bill is most objectionable? I believe that an honest union boss (if such a thing exists) would point to the language that forces the union to collect its own dues. A close second is probably the language that forces the union to stand for a re cert election every year.

both of these spell doom for the closed cycle golden seam that currently allows tax payer dollars to wind up in Democrat politician's pockets.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | February 23, 2011 2:27 PM | Report abuse

"Actually, he just gave them 100% justification for their strategy. He's neutered (in my opinion) most of the arguments against the Democrats heading out-of-state. By his own admission, he was planning to trick 'em and negotiate in bad faith."

Agreed. They're going to have to stay away until he resigns, loses the next election, or enough Republican Senators repudiate him. Bit of a knot now, for both sides. I think a statewide strike by all public employee's might now be enough to nudge this in either getting him out or getting enough R Senators to renounce him.

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | February 23, 2011 2:28 PM | Report abuse

From the same Benen piece:

"Also today, anti-labor efforts in Iowa came to an abrupt halt in Iowa, as Gov. Terry Branstad (R) announced he's not interested in changing the state's collective bargaining law."

No one will stand next to the Stinky Cheese.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | February 23, 2011 2:28 PM | Report abuse

Skippy, we oppose you, too! LOL

Posted by: suekzoo1 | February 23, 2011 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Take a numbah honey. Take a numbah

Posted by: skipsailing28 | February 23, 2011 2:32 PM | Report abuse

" I think a statewide strike by all public employee's might now be enough to nudge this in either getting him out or getting enough R Senators to renounce him."

For clarity, a statewide strike by public employee's should lead to a resolution. But only if they are resolute in staying outfor as long as it takes.

And BTW, fantastic commenting everybody. Absolutely compelling reading! My thanks to all!

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | February 23, 2011 2:32 PM | Report abuse

@12Bar: ""Besides, "woof, woof, Master Koch". And besides, "I am your loyal poodle, Master Koch". "Look, Master, I can do tricks".""

He's not going to say any of that at the press conference. Not in public! Not •this• time. Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice . . .

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | February 23, 2011 2:32 PM | Report abuse

Abraham Lincoln wrote the Playbook for Wisconsin Dems —Only He jumped through a 2nd Floor window to get away!

http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.php?az=view_all&address=439×466200

Posted by: wdsoulplane | February 23, 2011 2:35 PM | Report abuse

@skip: "a while ago it was Sarah Palin who was in the left's gun sites. Now it is the WI govenor. The common thread? both of them oppose liberalism."

In all fairness, when the folks came out with the long knives to eviscerate Sarah, they had •nothing• to go on except that she looked like an attractive Republican woman, thus represented a threat, and had to be taken out, as soon as possible. There was no prank call, she hadn't been a union buster, etc., etc.

Walker has given his opposition •plenty• to work with.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | February 23, 2011 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Let's just all be clear on this. Before there was all the talk about cutting Social Security and pension benefits, Congress gave the top 2% tax cuts that cost $80 billion over 2 years and will cost even more (adding in debt service at rising interest rates) over the next 10 years.

AFTER they got theirs, and corporations in WI (who already pay among the lowest taxes in the country) got additional breaks, THEN came the push to balance budgets on the backs of the working class and the elderly.

This is the last gasp (hopefully) of the rich to take everything they can while they still have the power to do so.

Posted by: Mimikatz | February 23, 2011 2:38 PM | Report abuse

kevin: "In all fairness, when the folks came out with the long knives to eviscerate Sarah, they had •nothing• to go on except that she looked like an attractive Republican woman, thus represented a threat, and had to be taken out, as soon as possible. There was no prank call, she hadn't been a union buster, etc., etc. "

And amazing how she's evolved since then....

Posted by: suekzoo1 | February 23, 2011 2:38 PM | Report abuse

1) My cheese doesn't stink.
2) I am not Koch's bıtch.
3) I am in Tripoli, not Venezuela.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 23, 2011 2:39 PM | Report abuse

@12Bar: ""Besides, "woof, woof, Master Koch". And besides, "I am your loyal poodle, Master Koch". "Look, Master, I can do tricks".""

He's not going to say any of that at the press conference. Not in public! Not this time. Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice . . .
-----------------------------------------------------------
Just kiddin' with the Plumliners, Kev.

Woof-Woof Walker isn't the first politician to be done in by audiotapes that reveal the Real Man behind the Statesman. I'll bet Walker feels like the biggest dope alive right about now. If he hadn't been so easily duped by his need for admiration from the Great Koch, he would not have pranced out all of his tricks.

Posted by: 12BarBluesAgain | February 23, 2011 2:42 PM | Report abuse


Hey Liam, the point you've made twenty times today wasn't lost on State Sen. Larson. :)

""On a tactical level, however, he called the prank -- pulled by the website Buffalo Beast -- a major blunder on Walker's behalf. "He just gave it all away right there," Larson insisted.

In particular, Larson pointed to a portion of the roughly 20-minute call in which the governor talked about getting the senate Democrats back to the state by promising to hold negotiations, only to quickly pass the anti-union legislation while a quorum was reached.

"The part that really had my eyebrows up is the idea that he would trick us to come back for a compromise and use that as an excuse for passing it," said Larson. "He is such a hypocrite because he is saying what we are doing is an affront to democracy and then he is going to trick us into coming back?"

"To anyone who was thinking, 'Well they wouldn't try anything shady,' this puts an end to that idea," he added.""

Posted by: lmsinca | February 23, 2011 2:03 PM

..................

Sometimes I keep repeating the truth, because so many punchers of public school teachers keep trying to bury it.

Walker to Koch.

Hey Mr. Koch, I am the sort of weasel that you can count on to do your dirty work, so put your money on me.

Posted by: Liam-still | February 23, 2011 2:43 PM | Report abuse

12BB: "Woof-Woof Walker isn't the first politician to be done in by audiotapes "

Yeah, and this is much much better than when Palin got duped into thinking she was taking to the President of France.

LMAO

Posted by: suekzoo1 | February 23, 2011 2:45 PM | Report abuse

"The former chief of the American Chamber of Commerce of Nicaragua worked to defeat President Daniel Ortega."

Amazing, it is still not over.

I almost got killed there when I was a medical student, part of a CISPES organized 'health workers exchange'. Stupid (and elitist!) socialist that I was, I didn't realize Reagan was at war with the Sandinos. I thought El Salvador was dangerous, the FMLN scared me. I thought Nica was the safer place. I thought it a little odd when I was handed an AK on the way up to a Miskito Indian (forced) relocation camp. I saw kwashiorkor for the first time.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 23, 2011 2:49 PM | Report abuse

There is book coming out, by a Palin insider, full of juicy stories about how paranoid a mama grizzly she really is.

The insider tells of how Sarah used to write letters of praise, about herself, to be sent to the media, under different names.

Posted by: Liam-still | February 23, 2011 2:49 PM | Report abuse

@12Bar: "I'll bet Walker feels like the biggest dope alive right about now."

I hope so. He should.

"If he hadn't been so easily duped by his need for admiration from the Great Koch, he would not have pranced out all of his tricks."

The more I think about it, the worse Walker sounds. I bet even he think he sounds a lot more fawning and stupid now than when he was taking the call.

I can't imagine there aren't a lot of Democratic politicians and activist in WI that aren't popping the bottles on champagne corks and writing their thank you letters to Walker for wrapping up WI in such a nice pretty bow for them.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | February 23, 2011 2:51 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, and this is much much better than when Palin got duped into thinking she was taking to the President of France.
--------------------------------------------------
Don't remember what she said to King Francais, but hopefully she didn't share her political strategy, and seek advice, for the overthrow of the U.S. government.

Posted by: 12BarBluesAgain | February 23, 2011 2:51 PM | Report abuse

forgot the cite.

"As president of the American Chamber of Commerce of Nicaragua, Róger Arteaga Cano routinely dealt with business issues and trade practices affecting members like ExxonMobil or Citigroup. But he also led an unusual campaign: organizing secret meetings with opposition party leaders in an effort to oust President Daniel Ortega in an election this year."

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/24/world/americas/24chamber.html?hp

Posted by: shrink2 | February 23, 2011 2:52 PM | Report abuse

@sue: "And amazing how she's evolved since then...."

Nobody told her that she had to have a Facebook page. ;)

Blood libel. Sigh.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | February 23, 2011 2:52 PM | Report abuse

A Modest Proposal.

From here on out, every time Governor Walker does not answer a question posed by the media, the reporters in question should say: What's the matter governor; David Koch got your tongue?

Posted by: Liam-still | February 23, 2011 2:52 PM | Report abuse

kevin: "Nobody told her that she had to have a Facebook page. ;)"

No one told her she had to have a fake FB page, either, that she uses to LIKE herself.

What a piece of work... :o)

Posted by: suekzoo1 | February 23, 2011 2:56 PM | Report abuse

It doesn't matter what anyone thinks.

States are going broke. Some of them are already there.

Bureaucrats multiply like bunny rabbits and their salaries, benefits, and pensions keep getting fatter and fatter.

Something must give.

Either many of them will get fired or their pay will be reduced. It cannot be helped.

Both may end up happening.

With 10% unemployment and rising, fat bureaucrats look pretty suspicious to the taxpayers. Look at Illinois:

Illinois seeks to borrow $3.7 billion to shore up pension shortfall

Illinois' pension system is one of the most poorly funded in the nation, with less than 40 percent of its $139 billion in liabilities funded, according to state figures.

But the $3.7 billion is a small patch for a very large hole. The teachers pension alone is underfunded by nearly $40 billion. It will receive slightly more than $2 billion from the bond proceeds.

AND this is the teachers pension problem ALONE.

And, the Chicagoland, political mafia just raised taxes through the roof.

Crushing tax burdens and teetering bankruptcy is what awaits us all under Obamalike regimes.

Posted by: battleground51 | February 23, 2011 2:57 PM | Report abuse

"It doesn't matter what anyone thinks."

Elitist!

Posted by: shrink2 | February 23, 2011 2:58 PM | Report abuse

And kevin there is no doubt in my mind that you will say that "Issa gave them plenty to work with" when their "investigation" reveals something the left will use to destroy him, right?

what really has the left up in arms is the fact that this guy would use the very same language they use themselves.

Just imagine, trying to use a trick to gain political advantage. Why it is enough to make LBJ turn over in his grave, right?

Just imagine, tough talk about demonstrators. Why it is simply wrong for a Republican to even think those things, even though over the weekend a union thug was caught ripping apart the wiring of a tea party rally sound system. Did I get that right?

Kevin, I refer you to this essay by Thomas Sowell:
http://www.nationalreview.com/articles/260399/voices-moderation-thomas-sowell

Here's a valuable quote:
"The “criticism causes violence” notion plays right into the hands of those Democrats who have done outrageous things in Washington, and who now insulate themselves from the outrage they provoked by equating strong criticism with fomenting violence."

Kevin, the simple fact remains the Democrats cannot win this argument on the merits of their position and the public knows that. That is why they elected Republicans.

I have little use for playing this game according to the rules laid down by people like "liam-still" assuming, of course, that this is a person and not some bot that the Obammies created to astro turf web sites.

No sir, it is time for baseball bats; figuratively if that suffices, literally if that does not. The unions have not shied away from violence thus far. And two can play at that game.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | February 23, 2011 2:59 PM | Report abuse

"two can play at that game"

skip and Liam, two cricket bats...behind the rowing shell boat house

fight fight fight fight fight fight fight.

I don't miss middle school.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 23, 2011 3:04 PM | Report abuse

The more I think about it, the worse Walker sounds. I bet even he think he sounds a lot more fawning and stupid now than when he was taking the call.
---------------------------------------------------------
I didn't even know who Walker was until this whole union busting thing started. I did not have an opinion about his one way or the other, although as time went on, I was pretty suspicious that balancing the budget was a secondary objective to busting the union.

Walker is done in by his own ambition. He should have been careful who he talks with and what he says. Instead, he dives into the pond without checking depth or water temperature because he is so overwhelmed by the Great Man, Koch, and what he thinks he has to say to impress the Great Man. It's sad, but people do the same thing every day in business to get ahead. If the Boss wants to lay off all the women or the hispanics, some toadying fool will find a way to make it happen.

That's how I read Walker--he's not a statesman, he's just a garden variety thug who wants to be a made man and he's willing to abandon all semblance of fair play, throw his own taxpayers under the bus, and perhaps even break the law, to curry favor.

Posted by: 12BarBluesAgain | February 23, 2011 3:04 PM | Report abuse

@Comrade skip-

Walker isn't fit to shine LBJ's shoes. Walker's problem is that he isn't too bright.

Posted by: ChuckinDenton | February 23, 2011 3:05 PM | Report abuse

"two can play at that game"

skip and Liam, two cricket bats...behind the rowing shell boat house

fight fight fight fight fight fight fight.

I don't miss middle school.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 23, 2011 3:04 PM

....................

And how does that make you feel?

Posted by: Liam-still | February 23, 2011 3:08 PM | Report abuse

I can well imagine how angry the lefties here are that anyone who isn't in the employ of a union or ACORN would have the nerve to consider kinetic action.

Yo: go view this video. Twitter messages wishing Scott Walker dead. How nice. Do you imagine that these folks are his supporters?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FpTsQiOmud4&feature=player_embedded

Just to be sure I'm getting this right, the left can demand that Scott Walker be killed, even threaten to do it, but Mr Walker can't make a joke about a baseball bat?

Once again, liberal rule number one: Do as liberals say, not as liberals do.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | February 23, 2011 3:09 PM | Report abuse

Hey Shrink,

I read you complaint about President Obma not acting fast enough on Libya.

What would you have him do? Do want him to invade the place, and get between the tribes, or do you want him to start bombing the place?

Sec. Clinton has already condemned the violence, so I want to hear you lay out what you want The President to do about the situation.

Posted by: Liam-still | February 23, 2011 3:12 PM | Report abuse

Wait a darn minute!

You mean to say that Ronald "Holy-Be-His-Blessed-Name" Reagan isn't the model for effective politics? It's Lyndon "Buttonholer-with-Giant-Earlobes" Johnson who is the new GOP model?

When is Richard "I-Am-Not-A-Crook" Nixon going to be canonized for his political tricks? After all, we have audiotapes so we don't have to guess at the genius of Mr. Nixon.

Posted by: 12BarBluesAgain | February 23, 2011 3:13 PM | Report abuse

Yes Skippy, they probably are, since a Big Shot Tea Party founder urged several days ago, that members pretend to be Union Supporters and stir up trouble that would turn the public and the media against them.

Since you are the one who has started pointing to those tweets, it would not surprise me in the least, if you were also involved in the creation of them.

Posted by: Liam-still | February 23, 2011 3:16 PM | Report abuse

@skip: ""And kevin there is no doubt in my mind that you will say that "Issa gave them plenty to work with" when their "investigation" reveals something the left will use to destroy him, right?""

I don't know. Obviously, lots of folks believe the ends justifies the means. I don't, but that may jut be me.

""what really has the left up in arms is the fact that this guy would use the very same language they use themselves.""

I think the problem is he attacked, then left an opening, and was astonished they he's getting pummeled back. Politics is a bloodsport.

""Kevin, the simple fact remains the Democrats cannot win this argument on the merits of their position and the public knows that. That is why they elected Republicans.""

Also, because a lot of disappointed liberals stayed home. And folks who were swept up in Obama-mania couldn't get as excited about a raft of bland senate and house candidates. I don't think Walker ran on union-busting, so if Walker won on the strength of his arguments, he's deviating from his arguments.

"No sir, it is time for baseball bats; figuratively if that suffices, literally if that does not. The unions have not shied away from violence thus far. And two can play at that game."

Then, alas, good sir, we're going to have to part ways. As I could not disagree with you more if you were a Nancy Pelosi-voting card-carrying member of ACORN.

The unions made concessions. Walker was advancing a strong conservative agenda and had the opportunity to accomplish more. He decided he was going to grab the brass ring, didn't work out so well, and now he stands to lose much of the ground he gained, and maybe his office, in due time. That's hardly a justification for breaking out the baseball bats.

Violence ain't the answer. Check the case law in Ghandi v. The British Empire.

And, in my opinion, it represent a paucity of actual ideas, irrespective of which side throws the first stone.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | February 23, 2011 3:16 PM | Report abuse

"Twitter messages wishing Scott Walker dead."

Ohh noeezzz! Somebody on "teh internets" said a no-no!!!

Meanwhile, the Tea Party savior has been fully exposed as a corporate goon. But that's okay with Skip Johnson over here. Too funny.

Posted by: ronnieandrush | February 23, 2011 3:17 PM | Report abuse

Local, state, and national bureacracies are filled with people who never found real jobs, for one reason or another. Like good socialists they became dependent on the state for their security.

Big mistake! These are hard times and state governments are going bust. The Obamanation is driving us all into the ground.

All those formerly plump, government teats are going dry. The little piggies are squealing in anguish.

Poor little piggies!

Posted by: battleground51 | February 23, 2011 3:18 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, yeah, the lefty twits here have declared any number of people politically dead based on some of the stupidest things one can imagine.

As I pointed out to Mr Moderation himself, the left seeks to insulate itself from its own evil deeds by declaring any criticism of the left to be a cause of violence.

what an absolute crock. The problem for the twits is that Lincoln was right, you can't fool all the people all the time.

Wasn't it just a few weeks ago that the left was appalled at Sarah Palin's use of cross hairs on her face book page?

Yet today I just posted a collection of messages calling for Scott Walker's death. Funny how the rules the liberals demand just don't seem to apply to the liberals.

Once more: the left cannot win this argument on the merits of their position. There are no merits to their position. so they are trying else. Many of these approaches are tried and true. And many of them are now being used against them.

As battleground aptly points out, there is no more money. What we're seeing here is Madison WI doing its best to imitate modern day Athens. How long before the teachers union in WI starts sending letter bombs?

Posted by: skipsailing28 | February 23, 2011 3:19 PM | Report abuse

BTW, skip: I am a huge Thomas Sowell fan. Might I recommend "A Personal Oddysey", his autobiography. If you have not read it. Excellent. Lots of great context, including his distaste for the violent proclivities of the Black Panthers, and the like.

And my absolute favorite Sowell book, A Conflict of Visions.

http://www.amazon.com/Vision-Anointed-Self-Congratulation-Social-Policy/dp/046508995X

Great stuff. I just always recommend that book on general principle.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | February 23, 2011 3:20 PM | Report abuse

"State department spokesman PJ Crowley has been holding a news briefing on the situation in Libya: ''We are looking at a full range of tools and options that are available to us to achieve our goal [whatever that is]... that certainly includes looking at sanctions that could be imposed."

Looking at sanctions that could be imposed...

Well if you can't laugh at that,
how about some more fat jokes?

Posted by: shrink2 | February 23, 2011 3:20 PM | Report abuse

skippy: "what really has the left up in arms "

We aren't up in arms. We are rejoicing and laughing. Walker has screwed himself. We are enjoying it.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | February 23, 2011 3:21 PM | Report abuse

All, my take on Obama and the Defense of Marriage Act:

http://wapo.st/ewfK7i

Posted by: Greg Sargent | February 23, 2011 3:23 PM | Report abuse

@skip: "As I pointed out to Mr Moderation himself"

I've been assured, just recently, by several of our Plum Line compatriots, that I'm as much a brain-dead right-wing troglodyte as any paleocon that has ever dragged his knuckles across the arid ground of our globally warmed planet.

Or, as I have often noted from various (thought certainly not all) members of the left: since I ain't 100% wit 'em, I'm agin't 'em, and we's a feudin'!

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | February 23, 2011 3:25 PM | Report abuse

Hey Shrink

What is your solution to the Libya situation. What would you have America do? Unless you are willing to suggest some solutions, then you might want to stop carping about it,

And how does that make you feel?

Posted by: Liam-still | February 23, 2011 3:26 PM | Report abuse

These Protesters are Participating in Politics! And it's about time that we ALL participate! Why?

"The result of not participating in politics is that you end up being governed by those (The Kochs, et al) who are only interested in conducting public affairs for private advantage"

Joseph M. Pijanowski

Posted by: Joe_Pij | February 23, 2011 3:27 PM | Report abuse

@Liam-still: "And how does that make you feel?"

It makes me feel sad. And like mom and dad never really loved me.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | February 23, 2011 3:28 PM | Report abuse

@Liam-still: "And how does that make you feel?"

It makes me feel sad. And like mom and dad never really loved me.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | February 23, 2011 3:28 PM |

I'm listening. Go on.

Posted by: Liam-still | February 23, 2011 3:31 PM | Report abuse

So kevin if politics is a blood sport, then anything is acceptable to you? Which is it? Either you don't believe that the end justifies the means, or you do. Can you at least make up your mind about that?

Oh yeah, Scott Walker "attacked". Is that what the left now calls introducing legislation? I thought you guys were demanding that we eschew military metaphors. Apparently not.

Oh and thanks for repeating another lefty meme: scott walker didn't say he was going to do this. Oh really? did you read the PDF he published during the campaign? You're not sure, it seems, but you'll repeat the allegation anyway. try this Kevin, "Well, I thought I heard..." then complete the sentence with whatever lefty theme works for you at the moment.

Oh my, its the return of the son of "the unions made concessions". So frickin what?

Wasn't it Rahm Emanuel, now the mayor of corruptville USA who said "never let a crisis go to waste"? Why yes it was. We face a crisis in WI and in my state, Ohio. And in many others. We on the right are simply doing what Obama and his minions did in their turn: doing things in the crisis that we otherwise couldn't do. Like ending the rape of the taxpayers Kevin.

The union concession is too little, too late. But thanks again for repeating the lefty theme song. Once again Kevin "I thought I heard that the unions made concessions" See how well that works for spreading disinformation? You're good at it it seems.

I agree that violence isn't the answer. And I don't relish the idea of fighting in the streets. But I'm more than prepared to defend what I think is right and I'm more than willing to show the unions and the politicians that we won't be cowed this time around.

So let me sum up: Politics is bloodsport, but you're not sure. You don't know about the investigation of Darrell Issa. You thought you heard that Mr Walker didn't promise to do what he's doing, the unions made concessions and violence isn't the answer so let's stand defenseless in the face of the left's tactics.

did I get it right? Did you miss any lefty theme songs?

Posted by: skipsailing28 | February 23, 2011 3:31 PM | Report abuse

"But I'm more than prepared to defend what I think is right and I'm more than willing to show the unions"

You talk tough, Mr. Anonymous "Skip" Sailing.

I'd frankly LOVE to see you take on the prison security union "in the streets".

I don't like watching violent sports, but I would actually pay money to see that.

Posted by: ronnieandrush | February 23, 2011 3:36 PM | Report abuse

I agree that violence isn't the answer. And I don't relish the idea of fighting in the streets. But I'm more than prepared to defend what I think is right and I'm more than willing to show the unions and the politicians that we won't be cowed this time around.
-----------------------------------------------------------
Sentence #1: Violence is wrong.

Sentence #2: I don't enjoy hurting anyone.

Sentence #3: Bring it on!!!

From Gandhi to Mike Tyson in three short sentences.

Bwahahaha!!!!

Posted by: 12BarBluesAgain | February 23, 2011 3:44 PM | Report abuse

@skip: ""So kevin if politics is a blood sport, then anything is acceptable to you?""

No! That's a lament, not an endorsement. Although in the case of Walker it doesn't sound like it could have happened to a nicer guy.

""Which is it? Either you don't believe that the end justifies the means, or you do. Can you at least make up your mind about that?""

Ends do not justify the means.

""Oh yeah, Scott Walker "attacked". Is that what the left now calls introducing legislation? I thought you guys were demanding that we eschew military metaphors. Apparently not.""

I'm not actually a lefty. Ask any of the liberals here if they think I'm a lefty. I'm pretty sure DDAWD think I'm to the right of you.

Find one place where I've demanded we eschew military metaphors, Skip. Or should I say . . . DDAWD?

Haven't done it.

""Oh really? did you read the PDF he published during the campaign? You're not sure, it seems, but you'll repeat the allegation anyway. try this Kevin, "Well, I thought I heard..." then complete the sentence with whatever lefty theme works for you at the moment.""

I say that because I may have missed something. Alas, unlike you, and DDAWD, and Liam, and a few other fine folks here, I don't already know everything.

Get my mind right, Skip! Straighten me out! Show me the truth!

""Oh my, its the return of the son of "the unions made concessions". So frickin what?""

I'm not sure that's a sincerely meant question. But, that's the point of negotiation and compromise. You extract real concessions to fix real problems, you negotiate in good faith . . . I don't live in Wisconsin. I'm sure there's more to the story than I know. From a distance, it doesn't look like he was serious about governing. Maybe I'm wrong. But maybe if you yell at me some more, I'll get smarter. Then surely shall I see the light. :)

"Like ending the rape of the taxpayers Kevin."

I don't want the tax payers to get raped. I'm 100% against tax payer rape. Or anybody rape, really.

"So let me sum up: Politics is bloodsport, but you're not sure. You don't know about the investigation of Darrell Issa. You thought you heard that Mr Walker didn't promise to do what he's doing, the unions made concessions and violence isn't the answer so let's stand defenseless in the face of the left's tactics."

You make me sound so squishy. I'm pretty sure politics is a bloodsport. Not that I like that, or think that's a good template for our own chummy debates, but, yes, there it is. Don't know enough about what's happening to Darrell Issa is express an opinion, just now. Life gets in the way of following the news, sometimes! But I will endeavor to learn more.

"did I get it right? Did you miss any lefty theme songs?"

See, DDAWD? Liam? I'm a liberal.

Just like you. No difference. At all.

Not prejudice. Just facts!

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | February 23, 2011 3:47 PM | Report abuse

@Liam: "I'm listening. Go on."

And last night I dreamed I was swimming in a sea of mashed potatoes and gravy.

Also, the kids at school made fun of me because I always smelled like popcorn.

To this day, the smell of popcorn fills me with a blind rage!

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | February 23, 2011 3:50 PM | Report abuse

I am not at all concerned. I live in a concealed carry state.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | February 23, 2011 3:50 PM | Report abuse

@skipsailing,

What are you doing hanging around Plumline, when you could be getting fitted for your custom brass knuckles, or your own personalized baseball bat, and practicing your fast draw from your concealed holster.

Such a tough guy as you, and one who feels so righteous about bringing your brand of justice to those schoolteachers (even though we all know you won't **relish** it), should be out there on the front lines.

Why are you wasting your threats on us? Why am I beginning to think you are all talk and no walk?

Posted by: 12BarBluesAgain | February 23, 2011 4:00 PM | Report abuse

"I am not at all concerned. I live in a concealed carry state."

Whooaaaa! Big man!

Talking tough and living in a concealed carry state!

You must be one-a dem Real Amurrrrrrkans.

Just don't go all Jared Loughner on us... Because your idiocy is a daily source of entertainment!

Won't you please refresh my memory on why you oppose seat belts and modern lighting fixtures again, Mr. Tough Guy? Hilarious.

Posted by: ronnieandrush | February 23, 2011 4:02 PM | Report abuse

"And last night I dreamed I was swimming in a sea of mashed potatoes and gravy.

Also, the kids at school made fun of me because I always smelled like popcorn.

To this day, the smell of popcorn fills me with a blind rage!

78 | February 23, 2011 3:50 PM | Report abuse [well, what if I get in trouble?]

Posted by: skipsailing

I am not at all concerned. I live in a concealed carry state."

Skip, I can see you're really upset about this. I honestly think you ought to sit down calmly, take a stress pill, and think things over.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 23, 2011 4:03 PM | Report abuse

I see, to insure that Americans remain compliant with the liberal vision for the future, they will all be medicated. Yeah, that will work.

"I can see, skip, that your opposition to the progress demanded by the party is a source of grave concern. I am prescribing a lengthy course of physical activity in our beautiful resort, Solzhenitsyn Gardens, followed by a life time of sedatives. The party is beneficent and needs the productivity of every citizen if it is to achieve the proper socialist state. surely you agree that we must achieve the proper socialist state?"

Now take your meds, but don't worry about packing luggage for the trip, everything you need will be provided.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | February 23, 2011 4:12 PM | Report abuse

Now take your meds, but don't worry about packing luggage for the trip, everything you need will be provided.
------------------------------------------------------------
You're going down the right path, Skip. Don't trust anyone. They're just trying to bottle you up. Now, be sure and send us photos from jail if you get there alive.

Posted by: 12BarBluesAgain | February 23, 2011 4:15 PM | Report abuse

I am not at all concerned. I live in a concealed carry state.

All the rest is typical ethan fantasy.

Kevin, I didn't make you sound squishy, you did that yourself. Your repetition of the liberal talking points indicates that perhaps you aren't quite sure exactly where your politics lie. While I can understand some concerns about some ideas propounded by either side, it seems to me that America today is, of necessity, polarized. It is just tough to think straight, Kevin, with that fence jammed in you solid waste disposal port.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | February 23, 2011 4:18 PM | Report abuse

Light bulbs! Too funny.

It's like that scene out of The Jerk:

"The cans! He hates the cans. Got to get away from the cans!"

Posted by: ronnieandrush | February 23, 2011 4:20 PM | Report abuse

@Liam: "I'm listening. Go on."

And last night I dreamed I was swimming in a sea of mashed potatoes and gravy.

Also, the kids at school made fun of me because I always smelled like popcorn.

To this day, the smell of popcorn fills me with a blind rage!

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | February 23, 2011 3:50 PM

...................

We need to talk further about this, but unfortunately time is up, so we will take it up, in your next scheduled session.

You need to focus on the positive. Smelling like popcorn is not a bad thing. Roseanne Barr would love to lick you allover.

Posted by: Liam-still | February 23, 2011 4:27 PM | Report abuse

skip, you're "ok", right?, I wouldn't feed you old movie lines (Hal talking to Dave in "2001") if I really thought you needed to be medicated. That would be unethical.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 23, 2011 4:27 PM | Report abuse

Skippy,

Finally a bit of good news for to cheer you up.

MacDonalds to soon offer Happy Meals for Tea Party Members:

Two Bags Of French Fries, Two Half Pound Cheese Burgers With Bacon, and a small diet coke.
Toys included are: An incandescent light bulb, and A Tundra Barbie Doll.

Posted by: Liam-still | February 23, 2011 4:33 PM | Report abuse

Hey Skippy,

Only people who are worried, or Nut Jobs, carry concealed guns, and you know which one you are. You say that you are not worried, so that makes you Jared!

Posted by: Liam-still | February 23, 2011 4:38 PM | Report abuse

And as liberal, ethics is upper most in your mind, right Shrink?

My goodness but I enjoy Liam-still. I just doesn't get any better. Entire new vistas of pointlessness, brought to us by that rarest of all creatures: an enraged leftie.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | February 23, 2011 5:00 PM | Report abuse

@skip: "Kevin, I didn't make you sound squishy, you did that yourself. Your repetition of the liberal talking points indicates that perhaps you aren't quite sure exactly where your politics lie."

No, I'm pretty sure.

"While I can understand some concerns about some ideas propounded by either side, it seems to me that America today is, of necessity, polarized. It is just tough to think straight, Kevin, with that fence jammed in you solid waste disposal port."

Okay.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | February 23, 2011 5:02 PM | Report abuse

When times are tough, "human nature" brings out the worst of motives on how a lot of people vote (for instance); it is the path of least resistance (e.g., to vote against workers' rights when the economy is down). It takes strong moral conviction to do what is right; however, most are weak. It takes strong leadership to get the masses to do what is right.

Posted by: dozas | February 23, 2011 5:02 PM | Report abuse

Skippy recently told us that he undergoes daily mental health counseling; and now he reveals that he also is carrying a concealed gun.

What could go wrong, since Skippy is such a placid and self contained person?

Posted by: Liam-still | February 23, 2011 5:21 PM | Report abuse

This poll is a crock. I looked at the poll on gallups site there are no internals given and big disclaimer that they have weighted the results.

Posted by: bjeagle784 | February 23, 2011 5:32 PM | Report abuse

And who are you; a polling expert or just another Tea Party Koch Sucker?

Posted by: Liam-still | February 23, 2011 5:39 PM | Report abuse

Just watch all the polls go tilt when states start jacking up the tax rates to pay the ever rising salaries, benefits, and pensions of the pampered bureaucrat class.

Chicago has done it already. Yes, Chicago!

Illinois is merely the outskirts of Chicago.

Chicagoland rules the whole state.

Deep-blue, deep Obamacrat Chicago is causing the whole state to sink into a fiscal mire.

In fact, all the states that are deep-blue Democrat are in economic distress.

Socialism works up until you run out of other peoples' money.

Or until they wise up and put a stop to it.

Posted by: battleground51 | February 23, 2011 5:48 PM | Report abuse

Did Walker really claim he has previously publicly said:

He thought about sending fake protesters to start violence.
He thinks democrats are bast?$&&.
He thinks Ashcroftt is a son of a b&@ch.
He is secretly planning to lure deems to the Capitol.
He thinks Ms Brzezinski is ummm attractive.

Posted by: ashotinthedark | February 23, 2011 6:21 PM | Report abuse

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