Editorial Cartoon: Man of the Year

Editorial Cartoon: Scott Walker Union

For those who have not been following American politics as of late, many Republican state leaders are pushing through legislation to strip collective bargaining rights of state union employees.  Of course no Governor has pushed this more than Wisconsin’s Scott Walker who is the subject of today’s editorial cartoon.

And whether you are pro-union or anti-union, you both have reason to not be happy with Governor Walker.  Seems his dictator like strategy to push through his legislation not only flies in the face of civil discourse but also sets the stage for Democratic majority state senates to do the same thing when they want to do something beyond what the public is looking for.    See here for one union member’s take.  And see here for Scott Walkers reasoning for what he did.

Even if you agree that state unions need to reign in their power, all Walker has done is embolden the unions to rally against it.  Now, instead of saving state budgets but limited collective bargaining for a couple years and having union workers contribute to healthcare like the private sector does, there will be referendums on ballots everywhere that will turn the tide and ultimately put everyone back where they started. 

Wisconsin State Journal, editorial cartoonist Phil Hand says it better than I do:

Gov. Scott Walker is not the dictator that many of the protesters make him out to be, but he’s also not particularly politically savvy. I support most of the policy in his budget repair bill, but because of his inability to negotiate or compromise, I can no longer support the governor.

The public employee unions in this state are too powerful, and this bill contains several measures to pare back the influence that the unions have in the state. Getting workers to contribute more to their pension and health care costs is essential. Making union membership voluntary is fair and just. Making unions re-certify themselves on a regular basis is a reasonable idea. Limiting collective bargaining power for the next two years (as Sen. Dale Schultz wanted to do) would give local governments the flexibility to deal with our current fiscal crisis.

I think the liberals and the unions can accept these terms, but Walker won’t budge on the permanent termination of collective bargaining. I don’t know where that leaves us. We could see massive layoffs, statewide strikes and maybe even violence in our future.

With some minor compromises Walker has the chance to enact some very conservative legislation that would dramatically limit the power of the state unions. But instead Walker has opted for ideological purity over pragmatic policy making.

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61 Responses to “Editorial Cartoon: Man of the Year”

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  1. Friggin Loon says:

    My head hurt just reading that. So in layman’s terms he’s just another dumbass politician with a hole for a mouth?

  2. Binky says:

    Seems to me we’re seeing more and more extreme positions on both sides. We don’t seem to want to compromise or negotiate anymore. Or to listen to any views but our own.

  3. G says:

    I describe myself as a anti-union/union member (have to be a union member when you work for state govt) and I applaud what Governor Walker has done.

    Too bad most of the peons that run the labor unions in the country really have no clue on what kind of crap that their CBA’s have done to state and municipal budgets.

    Want a prime example of unions running a state into the ground? California.

    What a preview of what the new fiscal year will bring because of the CBA’s? Wisconsin is doing layoffs and Connecticut will be right behind because our governor is looking for $2 billion in concessions from state employees.

    What is really killing the unions in this state is the fact that they helped elect our current governor.

    Know what’s killing the unions in Wisconsin and other battleground states? Obama not saying anything about this because guess what people, federal employees ain’t unionized.

    All the labor unions better get ready for a reality check because like it or not, it’s gonna come, and it’s gonna be the Republicans to do it because as we all know, pimping ain’t easy, especially if you’re a Democrat and your pimp is the AFL-CIO/SEIU.

    • Bearman says:

      I have good and bad examples from personal experience of unions. BUT I agree completely with Phil’s take. And as I said, all Walker has done is to embolden the unions to reverse any good parts of the legislature through ballot initiatives.

      • G says:

        Won’t happen.

        Whereas the unions were able to do that in my town because my state is a tiny little thing, Wisconsin is bigger, badder, has higher unemployment and the union workforce is but a small minority in the state.

        Like I said, reality check. Once people really find out what the average public union member gets and pays for in benefits, coupled with the fact that most town budgets go up because the education department in all towns are in denial of reality, those ballot iniatives will bite the dust.

        • Bearman says:

          Not entirely sure. All of what you say may be true but now you will have National Union money pouring into the state like you have never seen before. Again, I think the angle won’t be “we need our collective bargaining rights” but rather “as a democratic society are we going to allow due process to be hijacked for an agenda” The latter is an easier case to make.

  4. He sounds like a real a-hole

  5. I’m not a big fan of unions but I see collective bargaining as a form of free speech. Unions have been getting weaker even with collective bargaining. There’s no need to get rid of it unless you have no negotiating skills.

    • Bearman says:

      I think a moratorium on CB is OK given the dire budget constraints states are in and they can’t be held up for 18 months in negotiations.

    • G says:

      There are two different kinds of CBA’s: the private sector and the public sector.

      Lest you think I’m against the private sector, we have Pratt & Whitney engaging in wholesale union slaughtering here, which I’m 100% against.

      It’s the public sector that is wrecking havoc on our economy. I’m all for gutting CBA’s for the public sector.

      • Bearman says:

        I don’t see the difference between the two. In both cases you can be part of the problem or the solution in making sure a government or business is viable.

        • G says:

          The difference between the two is that the public sector often has binding arbitration connected with their CBA’s, in which there is no real flexibility for state or municipal governments to have in order to cut costs. Usually most govts are faced with a bad contract that calls for 4.5% wage increases per year over four years, or a very bad contract that calls for 5% wage increases per year over four years.

          There is no reality for public sector unions, just fantasy.

          • Bearman says:

            I trust your knowledge on the subject over my own. Interesting though we haven’t had anyone here actively supporting the public unions. I thought we were a more diverse bunch. haha

  6. George says:

    Thanks for bringing this situation to a broader light. I Googled this guy to check out more about him. You did a good job capturing his image. Your skills are definitely growing with each new post!

    • Bearman says:

      I created this guy out of my head. Which guy are you talking about??? Are you just making crap up now George?? haha

      • George says:

        I Googled homeboy’s named and I thought I saw an image of a guy that looks like your caricature. Of course, I don’t have my parental filter on either which gives me a lotta images to go thru no matter what I Google. If I Goodgle myself, I get back a couple of images of hot chicks in bikinis. They’re not me, but I appreciate Google’s efforts. 😀

  7. nursemyra says:

    This is the only Scott Walker I know

  8. jynksie says:

    The problem with collective bargaining is the fact that it is a blanket, lets get something for all approach. I believe in performance based salary and benefit, not tenure based. Unions don’t function on the premise of performance and thus, the shit floats to the top because they’re next in line, rather than the best and the brightest being next in line. Unions have their place, but they’ve forgotten workers rights and replaced it with “collective greed”. I’ve been in union based employment, I’m familiar with how it works and I left it because it’s broken, misguided and unfair to the hardworking employee trying to get ahead. God forbid the sheep aren’t equally sheered folks! o.O

    So all these states killing off collective bargaining, good! Performance based is the way it should be, you get more for your money that way! A teacher who has 20 years on the job and who does the bare minimum, shouldn’t be paid more than the 8 year on the job teacher who’s doing the job, engaging the students and going all out (as an example). That 8 year on the job teacher should be rewarded w/ better pay and benefits. Performance goals create competition and those who compete work harder and those who work harder make a bigger difference.

    Unions do NOT foster that mindset and please, dont tell me they do, you’d be feeding me a load of crap I -know- and most others know, is inaccurate. Thats why unionized professions in both the private and public sector are crumbling into pieces, simply ineffective.

    • Bearman says:

      As I mentioned to G, I am not in disagreement with what you are saying. I am saying the WAY it went down is going to have negative repercussions down the road which may nullify any part of the legislation that all parties might agree to.

      I have known some very hardworking union folks and some very lazy ones (then again, I have met both kinds of non union workers too. My biggest issue with some unions is when they tie up a job as a union shop and someone who is qualified for it can’t even join the union to get the job because incumbent members come first.

      • Bo Lumpkin says:

        Lets get this straight Bearman. What you are saying is that you don’t disagree with what he did, you just disagree with the way he did it. 🙂

  9. Well said and nicely communicated in your cartoon. Governor Walker is going too far. To remove collective bargaining entirely is a slap in the face of basic democracy and he may have just ended his career in the long run and ignited more support for unions rather than less by his action; exactly the opposite of what he wants to do.

    • Bearman says:

      I don’t know if removing collective bargaining goes against democracy but underhanded tactics do. (Yet it doesn’t go against politics so it is probably business as usual..haha)

      • jynksie says:

        …and the Dems leaving the state to thwart the legislation, rather than fight it from the chambers was the educated and intelligent way to go? I congratulate the Governor for finding a way to get things done, even if his legislature uses “fleeing” tactics to undermine the political process.

  10. MJ says:

    Ha! Funny stuff!

  11. I never get a plaque.
    *grumble grumble grumble*

  12. you do realize when the senators “escaped” wisconsin, they came here, right? to my little town. Now Rockford is branding itself as “the hideaway town.”

    eh. take what we can get i guess. hah

  13. Ya know I had the option of being in or backing the start of a union at a Horse race track I worked at in the past, and I denied it and for the following reasons. One I don’t need someone to protect me “in case” I mess up. I can do my job and not have to pay someone to protect me. Now maybe if I was lazy and didn’t enjoy my job I may have felt the need to be backed up. But I didn’t need the edge I did my job and did it well. Unions are like safety nets for losers.

    • Bearman says:

      I think if any sport needs a union, it is horse racing. Those jockeys aren’t even given insurance from what I understand.

      • I actually worked at a race track and new brezzers, jocks, trainers the like. The Jocks get paid very well, but do harsh things to themselves in order to weigh in. They Have way to much fun at night and really extravagant with their antics. They are not as bad off as you would think. The workers on the backside they do have unions and they are the ones who need help in that arena. At least that is my opinion.

  14. Bo Lumpkin says:

    I never liked collective bargaining because I always thought I was worth a little more than some of the other workers and a little less than some of them. I was once in a Union. They pushed through a contract that gave all the hourly workers a huge raise but cut the commissions of those who were in sales. I got out of the union. I guess it don’t matter to me anymore since I don’t have a real job.

    • Bearman says:

      What is even better is when sales gets paid bonuses strictly on a sales number (forgoing any mentoring, internal training, etc) they do, but corporate folks get it if the company as a whole does well.

  15. Its nuts whats going on with the NFL and Unions right now, do you have a comment about that bearman?

    • Bearman says:

      Yeah…go talk to players from the 60s-70s and ask them whether you are overpaid bunch of whiners. So if a team has a losing season, are you willing to give money back. Don’t get me started on them..haha

  16. Nate Fakes says:

    I can’t stand what’s going on up there – and also here in Florida – with these Republican morons. Compromise is out the door, and dictatorship is “in” according to quite a few of these governors. I can only hope it backfires on them.

    I’m still furious with Rick Scott for killing our high-speed rail that we had developed here in Florida. He killed it for political reasons – not from the facts.

    Okay, that’s my political rant for the day : )

  17. Tony McGurk says:

    Here in Australia AFL stands for Australian Football League. So what team does Scott Walker play for???

  18. Jillsy Girl says:

    It really irks me how politicians are becoming more an more obstinate and not working for the people, but for their party. It’s sickening.

  19. Dan says:

    It’s almost like the Barbara Streisand effect, you try to minimize the exposure of something which results in millions of people getting interested in it.

  20. The unions are the only friend a working man has. Because of the evaporation of their existence, today’s job market says “no health care, no pension, no holidays or sick leave and $10 an hour, take it or leave it” Meanwhile the megacorps and banksters suck all the money out of the system and that prevents new ideas and small business to get started let alone flourish. Is the American dream MacWages and shoddy Chinese products from MacWal-Mart?

    • Bearman says:

      FINALLY. Someone on the other side. Not that I agree with you but it’s good to see some more diversity of thought on here.

      I think unions are best when they are fighting for safe work environments and living wages. I think they are at their worst when they become their of megacorp and start acting like one.

  21. I don’t even know what to say about this. I need to see how it all playes out before I can make a valid call. I really need to read more into this.

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