Sunday, May 29, 2016

Scott Walker's latest, greatest power-play scam

You think you're inured to the handouts, insider privileges and room service provided by Wisconsin GOP Gov. Scott Walker to corporations, campaign donors and the wealthy: tax breaks, a phony, politicized, easy-money jobs agency that has created better work for lawyers and auditors, special legislation for mining companies and wetland-fillers, watered-down inspections for manure-spilling feedlots and easy permits for sand mines and tar-sand oil pipelines.

You say we've seen it all; his unconscionable attack on Planned Parenthood and women's health care, his rejection of expanded Medicaid coverage for low-income residents, his reduction of food stamp assistance combined with mandatory drug testing, and even increased taxation on the working poor and elderly by slashing federal and state tax credits.

We've been forced to accommodate Walker's-partisan-governance by surprise, deceit, fiat, favoritism, bad or non-existent data or public input - - demolished civil service, blown-up university tenure and budgets, bludgeoned public service collective bargaining and local residency standards, unjustified voter photo ID, reduced early voting hours, eliminated  long-standing state-supported recycling and public land acquisition programs only partially restored by legislators, slashed K-12 public school financing with huge dollar transfers to an ideologically-based private school sector.

But his latest scam is some sort of record-setting combination of con and disruption and reward to the private sector at the expense of Wisconsin citizens - - you guessed it - - who are not well equipped to fight back.

I'm talking about his 'plan' to quickly upend, dislocate and relocate - - without their consultation or approval - - tens of thousands of disabled citizens now living in carefully-constructed, time-tested, home care arrangements to - - you guessed it - - private insurance companies, with their paperwork and rules and bureaucracies, and - - you know it - - their need to make a buck.

Make sure you read Guy Boulton's compelling Sunday piece in The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, with this important takeaway:
Other states have started with pilot programs, testing the model first to see what works and what doesn't.  
In contrast, Wisconsin would adopt the new program in a single stroke, basically blowing up the system for providing long-term care, which was built over almost two decades... 
For insurance companies, the proposal — which unexpectedly was part of Gov. Scott Walker's budget last year — could mean tens of millions of dollars in profits a year.
There you have it - - the train wreck that is the Walker administration - - 
Fiery oil train wreck, Galena, IL
 - - renewed for another four years in 2014 and enabled by a grossly distorted and gerrymandered State Legislature and State Supreme Court majority as much in the tank for its corporate donors as is Walker.


Anonymous said...

You cite Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, the folks that promote all things Walker. They have repeatedly endorsed him even when their own fact checkers find him to be telling pants-on-fire to mostly false statements most of the time.


James Rowen said...

Try and distinguish between reporting and opinion/commentary/editorial writing. The story is solid.

Anonymous said...

The story is null-and-void given the larger context of that right-wing newspaper. So even if they publish something that you think shows Walker in bad light, everyone else just sees it in the context of Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's constant boosterism and consistent endorsements of Walker.

In other words, nothing published is MJS is "solid". It is a propaganda rag that leads the right-wing mighty wurlitzer across Wisconsin.

James Rowen said...

No, the story is not null-and-void. The story is factual and helpful. Your lens is way too narrow. I am not touting the story because it shows Walker in a bad light. The facts out him in a bad light, as do the interviews. I am touting it because it is useful reporting.

Anonymous said...

Nothing published in the state's biggest Walker-backer is "useful reporting."

Man MKE said...

Jim's comments are well-taken. No one should ever confuse actual journalism with editorials. The Wall Street Journal's editorial pages are a complete and disgusting pastiche of conservative campaign themes and issues. But the WSJ's news pages include Pulitzer-quality reporting on actual events and issues that often tend to contradict the opinions of the paper's editorial board. Which is to say, the Washington Post, like the Journal Sentinel, is a right-wing newspaper, in terms of its editorial pages, but the actual news pages have much to offer, and from award-winning reporters. Likewise, the old Milwaukee Sentinel was part of the Hearst chain for many years and maintained throughout its history a large right-wing editorial policy, but its news coverage was often hard-hitting and tolerated few if any sacred cows. I've heard liberal Democrats say they respected the Sentinel over the years for its environmental and political reporting.

Anonymous said...

So where is the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel on the repubicans putting sh!t in your water?

They endorsed this, they own it, and they have so little integrity that they cannot even report the salient issues of the day in Wisconsin.

Anonymous said...

It is disappointing to see those that should know better stand up for the bogus news being reported most days at Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. It is even worse to see these people mistakenly claim that any dialog about the biased pro-Walker news reports try to protect the propaganda by claiming anyone that mentions that MJS is not a legitimate news source is somehow confusing editorials with news.

You are really insulting your readers, most of whom know the difference between something marked as an opinion or editorial and what gets reported on the front page and in the rest of the paper.

There are 2 propaganda machines at MJS and this is why their readership craters. It has nothing to do with Internet competition. The product is hard-to-read because they shrunk the pages and text to cram in more ads. But even if you squint and try to read it, most days what is reported as state news is just Walker's talking points.

Yes, their editorial board and editorials/comments endorse Walker. They are at least being honest there. What is dishonest is the way almost every day there is some pro-Walker propaganda. You found a report you think is good -- OK -- but it isn't anything special.

Most other days, we can find "news" that is really just republican boosterism and I am not talking about the editorial page. It really is insulting to misrepresent that people that read political blogs don't know the different between the editorial pages and the content presented under the lie of objective journalism.