To Governor Scott Walker:
There have been throughout history events that have changed the world. Many times the resiliency of a people has been put to the test. The events in Wisconsin are no different. You believed that your election of last November was a mandate by Wisconsin citizens to get our fiscal house in order and that is partially true. However that was not the sum and whole of the mission many of us commissioned you for. Decades of irresponsible leadership in Madison by both democratic and republican administrations are contributors to the crisis that everyone faces. Governor Tommy Thompson, Scott McCallum, and Jim Doyle facilitated both budget and legislative failures.
Most everyone would agree that the status quo can no longer be tolerated. The people of Wisconsin and of the nation are divided because the message is so sharply divided along party lines. There is no such thing as (bi-partisanship). Very rarely do all members of any house or assembly or senate know exactly what the substance of any particular bill or amendment to a bill might be. Neither does any of these elected geniuses fathom or truly try to understand the long lasting ramifications of what is legislated into law. The members of legislative bodies follow the lead of their respective majority & minority leaders. Rarely does anyone have the testicular fortitude to actually vote their conscience or consider the two legged relevancy among them (their constituents).
The republican party of Wisconsin and the nation are going to pay the price for the political miscalculations of you and your administration. I find it terribly unfortunate. I voted the republican line in nearly every election since I was old enough to vote. Make no mistake about it Mr. Walker. It was not the unions their leadership or membership that has created budget shortfalls. On the federal level administrations, republican and democratic alike, particularly the Bush administration have been the largest contributors to the budget crisis. The states and citizens of this nation are experiencing heartbreak. The mismanagement of fighting wars on 2 fronts has been a financial fiasco, as well as and more importantly the loss of some of this nation’s best, brightest and bravest citizens. I don’t believe that any of these modern day hero’s willing sacrificed themselves so you or any administration could negate any rights that were legislated to the people.
The financial collapse of Wall Street and the corporate greed on their part and the failure of leadership to respond appropriately led to the crisis ordinary citizens are facing every day. These corporate pirates should have been allowed to fail! Instead they get a government bailout courtesy of union & non-union taxpayers alike. Just what do “We the People” get in return? We get to read about the great financial rewards reaped by these profiteers annually. We also get to see our so-called democracy in action! Politician’s republicans again; and again place the blame & burden on the poor fools that have to make such modest decisions like to pay their mortgage or pay for utilities this month? Or seniors who have to decide between paying for their medication or purchasing food.
There is no justice Mr. Walker if good men & women remain silent. I believe in certain protocols such as never negotiate with terrorists. Mr. Walker yourself & the republican senators have treated the people of Wisconsin and the democrats as though we are terrorists. We shall not! And we dare not be silent! I have written to both my assembly representative Pat Strachota as well as my Senator Glenn Grothman. I received no response from either of them! I elected them! I am a big boy. I have my big boy pants on for quite a few years now.
I accept and promote the premise that people can agree to disagree, however people of differing opinions should never be silenced. Even the dull & ignorant too have their story to tell.
I provided both of my representatives with a viable option that would have brought democrats home from Illinois and even possibly granted you the outcome you desired. I suggested to both of them that if removing collective bargaining was that meaningful to the budget repair bill; then assign this bill to a referendum question on the April ballot. Of course to do that you would have risked defeat of the passage of that bill. Mr. Walker this could have been your defining moment to truly lead Wisconsin. You could have been a leader that unites instead of showing your lack of leadership by polarizing and being divisive among the people of this great state. For government to infringe on the rights of a group of people is to infringe on the rights of all people.
So Mr. Walker, I wish you good fortune and good luck. Please by all means keep entertaining all your corporate sponsors and wealthy elitist friends. Please also keep in mind one last thing that I remember hearing actually quite often through the course of my lifetime. “It is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle; than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of Heaven”.
Brian J. Olig
PS. The last line was not a quote nor spoken by any republican or lobbyist.