Screwing The Collective
You really don’t see the vast majority of people take an interest in politics unless they feel like they’ve been screwed. Of course there are exceptions to this rule. One notable exception to this rule is the fact that the black community came out in near full force to help Illinois Senator Barack Obama take the White House. But then again, black people have been screwed by politics for so long maybe the exceptions are even more exceptional than first thought. Nevertheless, when people get screwed by their politicians, they have a tendency to blaze a trail to the voting booth.
After what has happened in Wisconsin, where it can be reasonably argued that Governor Scott Walker launched an all out attack against unions, it should have been no surprise to see people jump at the opportunity to take his ass to the proverbial tool shed. It has been said by some that Mr. Walker should be recalled. But thanks to Wisconsin law, Mr. Walker is untouchable for at least his first year in office. He’s safe for the moment. But all this may mean is that the people who supported Mr. Walker in his bid to rout unions may become his whipping boy until he’s available for whipping.
In the first election since Mr. Walker took office, the opposition has launched a political salvo right across the Governor’s bow. In his bid to return to office for a second 10 year term, conservative State Supreme Court Justice David Prosser appears to have lost his job to the liberal challenger JoAnne Kloppenberg by little more than 200 votes. While the victory margin is ever so slight, the fact that there appears to be a victory is rather astonishing. From what I have been made to understand, reelection for a Supreme Court Justice is a slam dunk. The last time an incumbent justice lost his seat to a challenger, American court rooms preferred judges to wear powdered wigs. It’s been a very long time since there’s been this kind of upset. And if anybody is listening, it looks like a seriously severe backlash is about to happen to these people who think their mandate is make the social-political climate super friendly to businesses and some form of hell for the average joe.
I have to confess that I had not heard that there was a special election for a Wisconsin Supreme Court seat until the day before the election. My initial thought was who the hell cares. Who the hell was David Prosser? And not for nothing but who was JoAnne Kloppenburg? But it didn’t take long for the potential implications of Mr. Prosser’s defeat to become apparent. If he easily succeeded in his return to the state’s high court then Mr. Walker might have considered the state of state’s politics as nothing more then business as usual.
But now, Mr. Walker should understand that the gauntlet that he threw down earlier in the year, when he pulled out the stops to ram his conservative agenda down the people’s throat, is now being picked up. There is an outside chance that Mr. Prosser will return. There will no doubt be a recount of the votes and the number of votes separating the winner and loser is awfully small. But even if she does end up losing, the fact that a virtual unknown has made such a significant challenge to the incumbent is pretty telling in itself. Anyone who associates his or her self with Mr. Walker should know that he or she is on notice. The true owners of the government aren’t happy. And Mr. Walker’s associates should know that their job is in real jeopardy. Backlash is a real bitch.
It’s good to see the people in Wisconsin wake up, assess their political landscape, and realize that things have gone seriously foul. Yes it’s pretty messed up that liberal representatives aren’t doing the job that a lot of people who voted for them think they should. But sitting back and letting conservative politicians have their way doesn’t appear to be an answer. If anything, it simply gives conservatives an invitation to think that they can have their political way without the slightest consideration for what people on the other side of the aisle might think or want. Too many conservatives have developed the kind of thinking that it is their way or the highway. It looks like somebody’s going to be hitting the highway alright.
But the real point is this, how did our social-political condition get to the point where it has become popular for our politicians to think that they can simply undo all the social contracts and dismiss the true will of the people in order push an agenda that so heavily favors corporations and the wealthy? It has gotten to this point because so many of us aren’t willing to fight for what is right until we discover that the screwing that’s about to take place is about to happen up our very own ass. The social agenda that screws the other guy is totally acceptable as long as it doesn’t impact me. With people displaying this type of thinking it is no wonder that a corporate friendly politician thinks he or she can run roughshod over people.
So people in Wisconsin finally woke up and are now pushing back as a collective. That’s a very good thing. The last I heard it looks like the people in the state have enough signatures to have a recall election for at least one of the legislators that supported Mr. Walker. And it looks like a sufficient number of signatures for a reelection for several more State Senators is not too far behind. Change is happening in Wisconsin. Hopefully it’ll serve as a warning to politicians in other states who are working hard to push an agenda that goes so pro business at the expense of the people. All it takes is a really good, hard collective screwing to get people to take political action.