Tuesday, July 7, 2015

GOP-run JFC 'Coup Amendment' empowers legislators' pension system power

[Updated from Monday, 9:58 p.m.] Based on what they have seen already slipped into the budget process through the dreaded 999 motion - - what I am calling the Coup Amendment, as it was intended to neutralize the Open Records law and make many other foundational state government changes that strongly smell of heavy-handed lobbying - - all to further empower one-party special-interest-obeisant/GOP rule in Wisconsin - - why should state employees and retirees trust this gang of power-mad Republicans to have the public good in mind as they stealthily enhance their authority over the state retirement system without notice or justification by kicking off public, non-legislator oversight committee members?

I defer to the conservative Wisconsin Newspaper, The Lakeland Times, on the big picture here. It's GOP sleaze, cronyism and corruption.

And it's all been done out of the public eye, without hearings, without debate or discussion or warning offered through the last amendment taken up by the budget-writing Joint Finance Committee after weeks of work, talk, delay, more talk and then high-speed 'legislating' to help meet Walker's presidential campaign timetable.'

Let's call it what it is: 

The Coup Amendment. 

It's entire undemocratic content, and not just the Open Records outrage from which Walker has bailed - - though acts officially as it it were law - - should be excised from the budget.

Coup by email attachment or text message or hand-written note slipped to the committee chairs is still a coup, a theft of power that updates and validates Woody Guthrie's robbery-with-a fountain-pen reference, no?


Anonymous said...

They have been looking for a way to get their greedy hands on it. I would guess they are going to give most of it to WEDC for bad loans.

Anonymous said...

Hmmm...makes me wonder why the Legis Fiscal Bureau (LFB) releases their report early on in the process about non-budgetary items contained in the budget when near the end of the sausage-making, "hey! WHat'ev..throw it all in" seems to be the rule.

Thanks for catching this, James. Keep up the good work!

Anonymous said...

It was always a smash-&-grab job.

2. I said at the beginning, they'll go after WRS. Because it works. Because that's where the money is.

3. Note the Orwellian -- make that Totalitarian -- 'justifications': Other states' pension funds are underfunded, they cried, to justify insanely counterproductive cuts, cuts to pensions, cuts to anything. But in Wisconsin, where WRS was competently run, there could be no rational, no budgetary or policy reason: raw abuse of power, rank partisanship, zero discussion.

They'll say anything.

It's Stalinist in nature. It's a Robbery by the State.

Anonymous said...

Resistance is futile. Scott Walker is all-powerful and unstoppable. I know. I have been reading this is so the state's largest newspaper for years now. You must learn to accept the propaganda and take-over of the public interest and gubbermint by multinational corporate interests.

If you don't, you will be sent to the re-education camps that are coming next. You see, once the last bastions of democracy are smashed, the only thing left to do is detain dissonant in order to reprogram their thinking.

Anonymous said...

Wisconsin news reads like a chapter out of a 19th century novel (Emile Zola's "Germnal" comes to mind, where an angry mob fed up with the final, over-the top act of greed and abuse of power of the coal mine boss, takes matters into their own hands by chasing the no-goodnick up a tree, and curtailing his love life with a swift snip of the shears! Shall we see 19th century justice for 19th century policies?! No surprise that Walker's hourly-wage body guards were privy to a sizable pay raise, contrary to the "right to work" paradigm. It remains to be seen how and when 21st century, American justice will meet up with Wisconsin's unsavory son.