The Wisconsin Microcosm
- Supreme Court Justice Louis D. Brandeis
I'm damned-near speechless - but hardly surprised. Could the election have been tampered with? We'll never know. Democracy is today at the mercy of easily hackable, computerized voting machines, not to mention unlimited money for paid propaganda and misinformation. A strange new world. It took 1984 twenty-eight years to finally get here.
Do you want to get a clearer picture of what the future has in store for the people of the United States? Look toward Wisconsin. You say you want a revolution? Don't waste your time. The American people (or enough of them to make stealing the election easier) will be distracted by the pretty wrapping paper every time. Forget what's inside the package. Just look toward Wisconsin.
Do you have any idea the damage that the Supreme Court's disgusting Citizens United ruling of two years ago has done to your country? Would you like an example? Look toward Wisconsin.
Governor Walker and the Republicans attacked the unions by ending collective bargaining. They slash a billion dollars from public education. They lightened even further the tax burdens of huge corporations based in that state. They have effectively told the middle class to lay down and die. And yet yesterday, enough Wisconsin voters were lulled into complacency by the sweet sounding bells and the lovely whistles. In the recall election of June 5, 2012, an event that had political junkies across the globe riveted, Mayor Tom Barrett of Milwaukee was soundly defeated. He was outspent seven-to-one, most of the cash coming from the out-of-state Billionaire's Club. He never had a chance.
The president of the United States was out there pitching for the candidate. His contribution to the discussion? A tweet. You could have gotten as much from your pet canary. On his Twitter account, in the 140 spaces that are allotted to him, he sent out a single message saying what a neat governor he thought Tom Barrett would be. Give 'em hell, Barry.
Scott Walker is shill for the plutocracy. He doesn't even try to hide that fact any longer. Over a year ago, in what has to be the greatest political prank of the last fifty years, someone claiming to be one of the Koch brothers was able to get Walker on the telephone. In a recorded phone conversation, the fake Koch told the very real governor that when all of the right wing agenda that he wanted passed in Wisconsin was finally the law in that state, he would fly him down to California and show him a good time. Scott Walker accepted the offer gratefully. Where I come from that is what is known as a bribe. Scott Walker will be sleeping in the governor's mansion for at least another two-and-a-half years.
June 5 usually marks a sad anniversary for conservatives in this sick country. It was, after all, eight years ago yesterday that their beloved Gipper shuffled off this mortal coil. That date now has a new significance in their delightfully twisted history. It will forever mark the day that the right wing was reborn, revamped, renewed and rejuvenated. Some of their talking heads have already picked Walker as the presidential nominee for 2020 (after Mitt Romney's two terms are over of course). Yesterday, enough of the Wisconsin electorate proved for all time and eternity that substance is passe. Enlightenment and vision don't matter anymore. It's all about the money. Money-money-money.
There is room for a healthy dose of schadenfreude here. The nitwits who cast their lot with Scott Walker on June 5, 2012 are going to deserve everything that happens to them. When their public schools are turned over to private corporations, when their adult children are struggling to get by on barely a minimum wage, when that monthly Social Security check that they labored a lifetime to obtain is merely a shadow of a memory - it'll be oodles of fun to be witness to their complete and utter despair. Cheer up. At least we have something to look forward to.
To take us lands away,
Nor any coursers like a page
Of prancing poetry.
This traverse may the poorest take
Without oppress of toll;
How frugal is the chariot
That bears a human soul!
I have a bit of advice for the poor fools who decided yesterday to stick with Scott Walker. And since Wisconsin is a microcosm of America, I'll offer it to all of you. Always encourage your kids to grow by learning. Encourage them to read as much as they can about art, science, history and biography. Show them that there are indescribable, personal rewards to be gained in the pursuit of knowledge and wisdom. Just don't bother sending them to college, okay? Don't waste their time. Don't waste your money. What's the point? Do you seriously believe that this recent epidemic of unemployed college graduates is merely a temporary, sociological fluke? You ought to rethink that one. If what happened yesterday is a grim harbinger of things to come, your children have no future. Keep your eyes on Wisconsin.
Every cloud has a silver lining, right? Not necessarily. What happened yesterday is bad all around. I have a silly question for the people who voted for Scott Walker. Assuming you really were the majority (and that's open for debate) did you folks even pause to wonder what the motivations might have been for the tens-of-millions of dollars that were poured into his campaign by out-of-state billionaires - some of whom I'm sure have never even visited your state? Were you actually stupid enough to believe that it was merely a matter of civic duty on their part, and that they had your best interests at heart? You'll find out what their motivations were soon enough. They were making an investment - and they're expecting a return on that investment.
Just look toward Wisconsin.
And finally a message to my friend Jacqueline and my cousin Amy Clements (photo on left): the two of you were out in the thick of it, trying to warn your fellow Wisconsinites of the gathering storm. You did well. Remember what Theodore Roosevelt said. If you failed, at least you failed "daring greatly, so that [your] place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat." Don't let the bastards bring you down.
After looking at a rough draft of what I had written, Jacqueline told me that there is still more room to believe that the election was rigged. She makes a good case:
"The numbers do NOT make sense. There were NO exit polls that were made available. They are usually adjusted to match the "official" totals, but last night, For the first time ever, unprecedented really, the UNADJUSTED EXIT POLLS WERE NOT MADE AVAILABLE TO THE PUBLIC....The electoral process is corrupted - the machines are riggable and the criminals go UNDETECTED. stolen elections are EATING democracy."
Jacqueline also informs me that the "liberal" media called the election before the polls had closed in three true blue counties. To be continued....
Say what you want about the times we live in, they sure as hell aren't boring. Anything but. Just look toward Wisconsin.
Democracy is Coming
Get the fuck out of the way.