Issue of the Week: Scott Walker Cuts Workers’ Pay
Plus Hero and Jerk of the Week
much for responsible budgeting.
problem goes back to last fall when Walker
presented his proposed 2010 budget, which included $32 million in wage and
benefit cuts that had never been presented to union representatives. While the
county board watered down those cuts, the budget Walker signed contained roughly a $10 million
hole in it.
technically illegal, since the county is mandated to craft a balanced budget
instead of resolving the issue right away, Walker allowed it to drag on while he promoted
himself around the state. Now, it’s September, and Walker still has to fill that hole (and come
up with an extra $700,000 to pay consultants who are inspecting county
facilities following the fatal accident at the O’Donnell parking structure).
what does Walker
do? He didn’t go back to the bargaining table to work out a compromise.
Instead, he unilaterally ordered more furlough days for workers and then
skipped town to campaign for governor. But not all workers get the extra
furlough days. Walker
exempted the higher-paid workers, such as attorneys and engineers, who tend to
vote in the Republican primary, and stuck it to the lower-paid workers who
provide the front-line services that keep the county operating every day and
who will probably vote in the Democratic primary.
tried to delay the furloughs until after the Sept. 14 primary so that he could
seem like a responsible budget-cutter. But the truth is that Walker’s 2010 county budget is illegal,
unethical and irresponsible.
Heroes of the Week
‘2nd Sundays’ Volunteers
often amounts to just lending out a logo for special events, but volunteers
from Lena’s Food Market and the Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development
Authority (WHEDA) will be donating their time to collect food donations at
Milwaukee’s newest concert series, “2nd Sundays at the Lake” (at the Old Coast
Guard Pavilion next to McKinley Marina). Organized by Serve 60, which matches
volunteers with local opportunities, the concerts will feature gospel music
from 2-5:30 p.m. beginning Sept. 12.
Volunteers from Lena’s and WHEDA will be collecting nonperishable items
for the food banks of Feeding America Eastern Wisconsin. Readers who wish to
help are urged to bring food items to the benefit, or visit www.serve60.com or
Jerk of the Week
WTMJ-AM’s Charlie Sykes
Right-wing talker Charlie Sykes is used to reprinting on his blog, verbatim, e-mails from conservatives like Scott Walker and David Clarke when they need a sympathetic media outlet. So Sykes probably thought nothing about reprinting, verbatim, an e-mail from an anonymous listener about an alleged Tom Barrett fund-raiser hosted by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Cue the right-wing noise machine. Immediately, the state Republican Party sent out a snarky press release about the super-secret fund-raiser that Barrett allegedly didn’t want anyone to know about. The problem, though, is that Sykes and the Republicans got punk’d. The Republican Party had to retract their comments on their website, and so did Sykes. The fund-raiser only existed in their paranoid fantasies. Perhaps Sykes should stick with talking points provided by Walker’s campaign chair, Michael Grebe, who just happens to employ Sykes’ wife.