Thursday, February 17, 2011
Tunisia, Egypt, Yemen, Algeria, Bahrain, Wisconsin
On Wednesday at least 13,000 angry protesters and union suppoters gathered at the Capitol in Madison. They were there for a 17-hour public hearing on Gov. Scott Walker's "budget repair bill." The controversial bill would strip many public workers of union bargaining rights. State workers would have to pay for half their pension costs and at least double their healthcare contributions.
[Los Angelse Times (blog), Wisconsin protests: Rising up in the Midwest [Video], 2/17/2011]
And then Democrats left the state so a vote could not be held.
Follow events in Wisconsin on Google, or on Twitter with hash code #wi.
Here’s an article on the governor’s union busting plans and the response to them: Wisconsin update: Democrats in hiding, not coming back until right to organize is secured (DailyKos, 2/17/2011).
And another, from The Nation:
Wisconsin's Republican governor and Republican-dominated legislature are moving to destroy organized labor, moving to abolish democratic rights that were the essence of the New Deal, and treating working-class Americans as though they were meaningless in our country's mosaic. Meanwhile, those who are responsible for the catastrophic financial crisis are riding high--and in the name of deficits they largely caused, they insist that those who worked a lifetime to build and own their homes, to send their children to public schools, to have security in their retirement years, to have decent medical care--that those citizens should pay the price for budgetary crises in honor, dignity and decency.
However, as the events in Cairo, and now Wisconsin, show us, this is a moment of extraordinary possibility. It is a time for global, nonviolent challenge to anti-democratic forces, wherever they may be--forces that have enriched themselves while promising stability based on coercion, suppression of rights and profound corruption.
[The Nation (blog), A Time for Resistance, 2/17/2010]