Save Scott Walker

April 11, 2012

In 2011, Wisconsin and Ohio both passed laws repealing, to a significant extent, the mistake of public-sector unions.  (Public-sector unions are a relatively recent innovation; they necessarily create conflicts of interest and represent a structural problem for democracy.)  The Ohio reform was then itself repealed by ballot initiative, in a campaign funded largely by out-of-state union money.

Different states have different systems.  In Wisconsin, instead of a ballot initiative, the opponents of reform are using recall elections.  Last year the reformers successfully beat back liberals’ attempts to flip majority control of the state supreme court (in both the regularly scheduled primary and general election) and state senate (in recall elections).  Now Democrats are trying for the really big prize—Governor Scott Walker, the author of the reforms himself.

The primary for the Democrats to choose their opposition candidate is May 8th.  He’ll face Governor Walker in the recall general election on June 5th.

Like Ohio’s ballot initiative, these recall elections do not coincide with a well-attended larger election, such as a presidential election; so, presumably, they will be disproportionately decided by liberals motivated to change the (new) status quo.  (That certainly seems to have been the case in Ohio, as far as I can tell.)

I had been meaning to discuss the recall election anyway, but by a happy coincidence, Disrupt the Narrative also covered it just yesterday, in his usual irreverent style: “Wisconsin Governor Recall Race Turns into Clown Car”.

Over the last few months, writers at National Review Online have also covered some interesting details:

You can read more, and donate to Walker’s campaign, at Wisconsin Recall Action Fund.

Governor Walker says,

I honestly believe that when we prevail, we’ll send a powerful message not only to our state house in Madison, we’ll send it to every state house in America,


We’ll send a message everywhere that if you do the right thing, if you stand up and take on the tough challenges, not only will you prevail, but there will be good fellow citizens there willing to stand with you.

I’ve donated.  Will you?

27 Responses to “Save Scott Walker”

  1. P. Henry Saddleburr Says:

    I have donated and thanks for the link.

  2. Snoodickle Says:

    I can’t think of a better use of my hard earned money than donating it to the recall campaign of a governor of another state. Where do I sign up?

    • I think Governor Walker (as quoted above) is right: If he loses, the unions, something like the mob, will have made an example of him for any other governors who think about resisting. If he wins, there’s some chance that at least a few other governors will continue to risk acting in the public interest. Whether we like it or not, that makes it a national issue.

      As an Ohioan, I also take this personally. We lost Issue 2, and we shouldn’t have. The vote was 3-to-1, but we were outspent 3 to 1. “National unions are estimated to have spent some $25 million on a methodical and unified campaign against the initiative . . . .” After national unions did this to my state, I’m certainly not going to be bound by any one-way scruples about affecting the elections of other states.

      • Correction, the vote was 3-to-2.

      • Snoodickle Says:

        Ahhh, now you see the danger of Citizens United. I agree with you, unions, much like corporations, should not wield this much electoral power. The decision in Citizens United increases that power immeasurably. Reverse that decision, and states and the federal government can pass laws limiting union’s influence over elections. But wait! You argued that unlimited spending is an immutable First Amendment right, and that it is good for democracy. Not so, huh?

      • The public-sector unions’ existence itself is a structural problem for democracy, even if they didn’t spend any money in elections. (Levels of government spending should be set by the taxpayers and their elected representatives, not by the recipients of that spending.) That has nothing to do with corporations.

        If you’re not concerned with structural problems (you didn’t seem to be before) but are agreeing that unions happen to use their influence for bad policies rather than good ones, that doesn’t justify preventing them from spending in elections. I might almost as well say that “there oughtta be a law” banning campaign spending by people whose pen name is Snoodickle, just because I disagree with how they choose to spend it.

      • Tevyeh Says:

        Now you’re being inconsistent, Chillingworth. Don’t you know that when you express disagreement with or opposition to an activity you’re implicitly arguing for its criminalization?

      • Snoodickle Says:

        You just did a faster 180 than Mitt Romney. If you support the unions’ right to limitless spending in elections, why are you complaining about it? Your exact words were “they shouldn’t have” won the election but for the fact that they disproportionately outspent their opponents. You speak as if what happened is some kind of travesty, yet at the same time acknowledge that the result is consistent with your vision of democracy. If the First Amendment allows limitless spending by unions and corporations, as you say it does, then you would say “they should have” won the election, because their voice was stronger than their opponent’s and the voters were persuaded by it. Don’t complain about the system you support.

      • Wow, I think Snoodickle just committed the very error Tevyeh just finished making fun of.

      • Just to clarify:

        (1) I do think “we shouldn’t have” lost, in the sense that we were right on the issue, and also in the sense that we might have won if we hadn’t been so outspent—that is, if we had had more of an even playing field for getting the message out.

        (2) I also think that generally, the government should not restrict, by force of law, people’s choices to spend money in elections. This is perfectly consistent with paragraph 1. (See Tevyeh’s remarkably prescient mockery of your assumption to the contrary.)

        (3) I also think that public-sector unions should not exist, and also that the government should not permit them to exist. This is consistent with both 1 and 2.

      • Snoodickle Says:

        You’re so disingenuous its laughable. Don’t try to retreat from what you said, it’s unbecoming.

        Ps. You just made the exact argument that opponents of Citizens United have repeatedly made. Your inconsistent principles have tripped you up once again.

      • Can you explain where I’ve been inconsistent or changed my position?

      • Snoodickle Says:

        You support Citizens United but the rail on the spending it creates. You then say you want a “level playing field”, a principle antithetical to everything that case stands for.

      • The bad news is that I still can’t make you understand the difference between the question of whether a thing is good or bad policy, and whether it is or should be legal or not. You have to think this stuff through for yourself.

        The good news is that if you do ever come to understand it, that may possibly give you the key to understanding everything else about liberalism and conservatism.

      • Snoodickle Says:

        Here’s the bad news for you – I am right and you are wrong.

      • Snoodickle Says:

        P.S. Since you linked to a post where you claimed that you, or one of your cronies, “won” an argument while at the same time utterly failing to respond to the proposal I advanced or the question I posed, I ask you again: Do you dispute that for-profit insurance creates a conflict of interest that is harmful to the insured? And what is your response to using not-for-profit health funds in lieu of for-profit insurance, thus eliminating the conflict of interest, improving the coverage provided to the insured, while at the same time keeping the government out of the business of paying for health care.

      • Snoodickle Says:

        I find it curious that every time I have the upper hand in an argument, you magically go silent.

      • To review:

        If I discontinue the conversation, it must mean you won.

        If you discontinue the conversation, it must mean you won.

        I’m beginning to notice a pattern in your epistemology.

      • Snoodickle Says:

        I ask you again: do you dispute that for-profit insurance creates a conflict of interest that is harmful to the insureds? And what is your response to using not for profit health funds?

      • Snoodickle Says:

        O ya! I just thought of a time that you were the most inconsistent person in the world. You said, and I quote, “liberals shouldn’t be allowed to vote.” Read that sentence again. A free speech champion saying that a whole class of individuals should not be allowed to vote merely because of their political views. Hilarious!

      • Man, back for more punishment? I suspect that you are remembering this comment—except not quite remembering it. What I said was not that “liberals shouldn’t be allowed to vote” (you really should get the quote right if you’re going to call it a quote and put it in quotation marks), but that if, as the previous commenter had suggested, liberals are essentially not interested in following politics, then they shouldn’t enforce their ignorance on the rest of us by showing up at the polls, either:

        “But I think it does mean that liberals shouldn’t vote.”

        In other words, you’ve just made the same common liberal error again that you had already unwittingly made above immediately after Tevyeh had lampooned it: conflating thinking that something is good or bad with thinking that the government should force us to do it or not to do it.

        If only liberals could distinguish between the two, I sometimes wonder whether there would be anything left of liberalism.

      • Snoodickle Says:

        If you’re going to live in an alternate reality where you disavow explicit comments that you have made, I don’t think I can help you sir.

      • Snoodickle Says:

        P.S. If you truly valued free speech, you would never, ever say that someone shouldn’t speak Even if the speech is ignorant and ill informed, it only makes the marketplace of ideas stronger, because it makes the strong ideas even more persuasive. You clearly don’t understand even the most basic principles underlying the First Amendment, and every other thing you say on the matter contradicts the previous.

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