Yeah, that’ll fix it. Quoth Wisconsin’s slightly less creepy Scott, State Sen. Fitzgerald, when faced with a roomful of angry union folks asking why on earth they have suddenly become Public Enemy Number One:
Lucy Walter, a Fort Atkinson Middle School teacher, reiterated Fitzgerald’s earlier comment about the squeaky wheel getting the grease.
“I felt like when we went to Madison we were squeaking really loudly,” she said.
Walter pointed out that many teachers unions, AFSCME and other unions have agreed to the concessions on insurance and retirement.
“That is part of our salary,” Walter said. ” When the squeaky wheel said ‘please don’t take away our union rights,’ why did you do that?”
Fitzgerald very pointedly noted that collective bargaining is “not some type of human right.” He further stated that it was implemented by the state Legislature in 1971.
“Since 1971, it is has been tipped away from the elected officials toward the contract and the unions,” the senator said. “Certainly, what we think we should be able to do is simply claw back on that and give more power to the elected officials.”
This illustrates something about the Wisconsin debate I find endlessly interesting: Just how not ready for prime time any of these people are. First Walker gets punked by some dude pretending to be a Koch-hole, then they run the assembly debates like they’re first-timers at student council, then they all say some stuff during the Supreme Court election that makes you wonder if student council couldn’t teach them a thing or two, and now this.
Give more power to the elected officials. Yes. Of course, honey. In the history of the world that has never worked out badly. Also, aren’t you supposed to be a Republican? Give more power to the elected officials?
Speaking of not ready for prime time, this made me laugh out loud:
In addition to several statements on the budget-repair bill or the budget itself, among the primary complaints was the senator’s apparent lack of response to attempted contacts during at least the past two months.
A telephone number listed on Fitzgerald’s website as a district number apparently was a disconnected fax number.
“We typically get about 10 to 15 contacts per day and we are able to respond to those through e-mail, and obviously, we send out regular letters to people in response to their concerns,” the senator said.