Walker Survives Recall Vote

And he is just as enormous a d-bag as ever:
Gov. Scott Walker, fresh from becoming the nation's first governor to survive a recall election, wants to go about mending Wisconsin's political divide in an egalitarian way: over brats and beer.

...Now the rising Republican star is focusing his message on what lies ahead. His term runs through 2014 in a state that is still bitterly divided over his move to end collective bargaining rights for most public employees.

"It's time to put our differences aside and find ways to work together to move Wisconsin forward," Walker said in an interview minutes after his victory. "I think it's important to fix things, but it's also important to make sure we talk about it and involve people in the process."

Walker planned to invite all members of the Legislature to meet as soon as next week over burgers, brats and "maybe a little bit of good Wisconsin beer."

"The first step is just bringing people together and figuring out some way if we can thaw the ice," he said.
Oh! I have an idea! How about restoring collective bargaining rights for your state's public employees? I mean, not that everyone doesn't love brats and beer (not everyone loves brats and beer), but collective bargaining rights are pretty awesome, too.

The biggest loser in this election is worker rights. "Union" is a dirtier word than ever in the United States, even as US workers (quite rightly) complain bitterly about the lack of employment opportunities offering a livable wage and healthcare benefits, the lack of job security, the lack of pensions, the lack of paid sick leave, the lack of paid maternity leave, the lack of paid vacation time, the lack of meaningful amounts of paid vacation time, the lack of equal pay, the lack of effective workplace protections against harassment, the lack of effective workplace protections against exploitation of salaried employees, the lack of effectively policed workplace safety regulations, and on and on and on, all of which are the sorts of things that unions used to work to provide for US workers.

Which is not to say there weren't abuses in some unions, especially in certain industries, but the solution to a lack of perfection among unions has been to buy wholesale into the corporate demonization of unions and virtually eradicate them, rather than to reform them and make them work for their members again.

Now we're in a situation where workers are on their own, trying to navigate individual solutions to systemic abuses in which exploitation of labor is so routine that companies openly discuss without any fear of consequence how to reclassify workers so as to avoid paying overtime or providing benefits.

We have sold away our right to not be exploited, and, instead of reclaiming that right last night, in Wisconsin, our foolish decision was celebrated and the architects of the US workforce's destruction richly rewarded.

What a truly terrible thing.

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