13 thoughts on “Which is More Important: Wisconsin or the White House?”

  1. Although I recognize the importance of the Wisconsin recall election, I can not give the POTUS an even position with a Governor of any State. The Supreme Court decision lie in the POTUS’s hands, and that is what I see is at stake in November/January 2013.

    Walker is taking on the public unions and winning. I think Wisconsin was one of the first states to recognize public unions. So union changes could be impacted.

    1. I agree with this assessment. POTUS is more important because of the SCOTUS nominations, if for no other reason.

      The recall election of Gov. Walker – if I’m understanding correctly – is just that: an election. He may keep his seat. But he’s done something I’ve not seen done before: challenged the (heretofore) all-powerful unions and won. Whether he keeps his seat or not, I hope other leaders take his example and learn that it is possible to slap the unions back when they grow too unreasonable and demand the impossible. That right there is a precedent that can’t be undone.

      Just my $0.02.

      (Disclaimer: I understand the great strides unions have made for “working-class” people, but I see their role differently from most union reps. The union can and should protect the workers and their rights, but should only make demands of the employers that the employers are able to fulfill. That second part is the one they seem to miss. It’s unreasonable to demand more money/resources when there’s demonstrably no more money/resources to be had, and striking in those circumstances is tantamount to a two-year-old throwing a tantrum when there’s no more cookies. Again, just my $0.02.)

      1. To mix up your disclaimer: while unions have produced some gains, I was a bit surprised that their claims to “creating the weekend” and the “forty-hour workweek” aren’t as clear-cut as unionists make them out to be: Henry Ford hated unions, but decided to pay his employees higher wages, reduced their daily hours, and gave them weekends, all because he was tired of the high turnover and the constant need to train new employees.

        Personally, I would have no animosity towards unions if membership were voluntary, and if individuals were free to join, or even found, any union that pleased them, and if individuals were free to negotiate independently with their employer, even if they were a member of a union. Much of the power that unions have, is due to the absolute powers granted them by the State, that violate important rights like free association–and are thus illegitimate powers, because they are violations of our rights.

        Of course, unions have created an awe and reverence around them, so we shouldn’t question them, even if they are bullies, pay their leadership salaries that rival those of the managers that they criticise as greedy, encourage sabotage so that their members could get paid more, and create contracts that bankrupt companies and governments alike. How can you be against the Unions, when they gave you the forty-hour workweek?!?

  2. POTUS > Cheesewheels

    But with the disclaimer that they are two separate issues. States may be bold and take on unions resulting in balanced budgets and surpluses, but the fedgov is in much deeper trouble.

    The states can be 110% healthy but if the fedgov is sick then the health of the states doesn’t matter at all.

  3. WI recall is not a pure proxy for the presidential election. Recalls are ugly, and gubernatorial recalls are so rare as to be statistically useless to study.

    There are some themes that will play out if either side wins, and to the extent the MSM repeat the “Conventional Wisdom” then it could help one side or the other.

    But the MSM has already put their stake in the ground: the Republicans won – not because the people of Wisconsin are truly concerned about the issues – but because the outside agitators (Rove, etc.) out-spent the poor defenseless public unions 5 to 1.

    Though some are paring off and noting that Obama is a wussie for bailing on something that wasn’t a sure thing. His ego wouldn’t take the loss.

  4. Wisconsin is sufficient proof that the Union-model is failing and has lost the hearts-and-minds – they only had power because they forcibely took money from unwilling members to advance the cause of their leadership retirement benefits.
    POTUS matters mainly if Mitt can keep his (and his minions’) Statist impulse in check, and he avoids becoming Barak-lite.

  5. Obama is a wussie for bailing on something that wasn’t a sure thing.”

    Maybe, but I think the Ds knew that him coming to Wisconsin would probably do more to increase the turnout of their opponents’ base, than theirs. BHO staying away was probably the smart move on the Ds’ part.

  6. As I’ve said before, I don’t consider the SCOTUS argument to hold much weight (in short, not a real “right” if so trivially nullified, actual change on the ground from current and perhaps future decisions small, a Heller II loss means give up on this avenue for a long while, and elsewhere we’re winning).

    Whereas whoever is POTUS at the end of the day of January 20th, 2013, I don’t expect much change in the Federal government’s “trillion dollar deficits as far as the eye can see”. Not going to depend on effective leadership from Romney on this and we know we’re not going to get that from the current Republican Congressional leadership.

    The only caveat is it probably matters quite a bit who’s in office when the Federal government’s finances hit the brick wall they’re hurdling towards (there are constructive and unconstructive responses) … and if he’s a Republican, echoing Bob Krumm, he’s also likely to be the last Republican president ever elected.

    Whereas this victory by Scott Walker (who’s done very good things for gun owners, I might add), shows that one of the most destructive positive feedback systems in US politics can be broken (note to the non-engineers, negative feedback systems can be stable, positive ones tend to run out of control). If Walker hadn’t won his recall, the prospects of both many/most? states and the Federal government not hitting the brick wall would have risen tremendously.

    Others have compared this to Reagan’s successful fight with PATCO, which resulted in a long period of moderation by unions.

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