Whats to be gained?
Why were the pro-recall people outspent by a gallizon dollars in Wisconsin? Because they really really like Scott Walker? Nah. Some of the exit polling suggests that many Wisconsin-ites voted for Walker because they felt he was elected the first time so they’re stuck with him, at least in the short term. This confusing argument can be understood in terms of making a choice, albeit a bad one, and having to live with the consequences. No do-overs. The obscene amount of money that poured into the state from outside sources, thanks to the insanity of “Citizen’s United” numbed the electorate into thinking that a governor should only be removed for criminal activity. When you’re hit with that message over and over again, day after relentless day, you begin to believe it. It was a blow to the labor movement to lose that race but a silver lining lesson to be learned by those of us who still are able to think. Money corrupts our national discourse, unlimited money destroys that discourse. As a patriotic American like most of you it saddens me that the message of winning at all costs is more important than winning one for the people. Democracy is not a game. It is a life.
So what’s to be gained? Is it debt reduction? Shrinking the size of government? Both of these reasons are a smoke-screen of bravado and false patriotism. The bottom line is, of course, money. Corporations are not in the business of providing services to people, they are in the business of making more and more money for themselves and for their share holders. It is a case of capitalism working for the very few not the many. (Does the economy drive us or do we drive the economy?) So…the less regulations, the less unionization the more opportunities exist for grabbing the golden ring. Is that what we are about as a country? Unfortunately, I feel that is the direction we are going. After eight years of shabby representative government under GWB, we had a chance to make a difference. Then a black man was elected who electrified us to the core of what we could be as Americans. Then a congress was elected who’s sole purpose was to block any and every proposal that could have been a good thing and whose sole purpose was to make Obama a one term president. Now I ask you, is that really doing what is best for the American people? Is it a good thing for Republicans to be for something then turn around and be against it because the President thinks it would be a good thing for the country? Money talks and liberty walks.
So now, we start the summer campaign season and the money continues to roll in. This is going to be an expensive presidential race. Initially it will be a wind fall for media outlets, TV and radio and if Romney wins it will be a wind fall for the Corporate/Private financial giants who will snuff out the voices of the middle class with glitzy ads that do not move the conversation forward. We need progressives in congress both in the House and Senate. It can be done. If the Wisconsin recall election does nothing else, it should be a wake-up call to all Progressives that the future of the country as a representative government hangs in the balance. Democracy is never perfect. Even though there are winners and losers, if honesty prevails and the campaign money does not corrupt, does not silence by sheer volume the voices of our disparate people then we have a chance at moving forward. So, unlike 2008, even though your side may have lost remember we are still in this thing together and must work together to make it continue. The alternative is scary. (Kenyan? Socialist? Communist? Really??)
and so it goes…