Friday 2.10.12 (actually early Saturday morning)
Notes and sketching.
Since there have been no recent GOP debates to entertain me lately, I was reminded that CPAC was going on. Looking into it I discovered that Scott Walker, Governor from the State of Wisconsin would be making a speech. I tuned in.
My timing was pretty good. Reince Priebus, Chairman of the Republican National Committee was speaking. He would introduce Scott Walker. I have not listened to Reince much but it kind of sounded as if he was just a little shitfaced as he was making his introduction of Walker. I could be completely wrong. Maybe this guy just sounds like a drunk all the time.
Walker made a great speech. He was spot on and very clear. He used a few notes but other than that it sounded as if he was speaking from the heart. That, or he gives this speech every day on his fund raising campaign around the country for the upcoming recall election. I’m guessing the latter.
He started off with some thank yous and acknowledgements of present family in the crowd. Then the speech took off. He mentioned the grief that his family is suffering at home. Someone complained to his mother in a grocery store. He said that for every “obnoxious” person the positive people are ten-fold. I think he must be talking about the people on his block and maybe two other guys from up north.
He mentioned that Reince was from Kenosha and that he grew up about 20 minutes down the road. He also said that Paul Ryan grew up 15 miles in the other direction and there must have been something in the water for all these people to come up together and get to where they are now. Fact checking this, Reince in Kenosha is really 43 miles away. Doing that in 20 minutes would be speeding. Paul Ryan would have been 20 miles to Janesville. SO… I notice a pattern of fact fudging going on. I wonder if it will continue?
Ronald Reagan comes into the speech. Ron has inspired Scott. Scott would like to be a little like Ron. A white American Male is about all you’ve got so far. Ok, you are also a Governor, for now. He suggested that Reagan was just the average ordinary guy who wound up doing extraordinary things. I was around during Reagan as well. I remember him as a kind of B actor who became involved in the actor’s union, changed parties, became Governor and then eventually became President. I don’t recall him being a misleading douchebag who seemed to think he could just get away with any damn thing that popped into his head or popped into his head after consulting with his contributors. Maybe I am remembering it all wrong. Maybe I was not paying attention. Maybe using Reagan in any sound bite NOW is the new black.
He mentioned that the unemployment rate is the lowest since 2008. Checking on that, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics suggests that the rate in December 2008 was 6.5%. December 2011 is at 7.1 %. I did not see the figure for January 2012. Seems to me that 6.5 is lower than 7.1 but maybe I’m not seeing it right. I was never a math guy.
He went on to completely bash Illinois. Since I’m from Illinois I feel I have the right to tell this guy to get fucked. I absolutely KNOW how things have been in Illinois. I was there for 40 years. I kind of feel a little “home teamy” about Illinois. I can say that there have been a lot of crooked politicians and questionable goings on and know that some of it was wrong as well as know some of it got shit done… but I get a little testy when this Wisconsin windbag starts bashing. I think that the root of that is the ongoing link to Obama. Obama is from Illinois. He was an Illinois Senator. Certainly this must mean that our country is now running on Chicago style politics with crooked politicians. Karl Rove suggested this the other day when he was criticizing the Clint Eastwood “It’s Halftime America” Superbowl commercial.
Walker promised 250,000 jobs when he was running and was still suggesting that shortly into his term. You don’t hear about this much anymore. One thing that occurs to me is that Chrysler has announced 1800 new jobs available at the Belvidere plant in Illinois. They’ll be building the new Dodge Dart. Belvidere is about 37 miles away from Janesville, WI, home of the former GM plant. I would guess, and this is only a guess, that some of these southern Wisconsin folks and former GM folks will be seeking some of those jobs. Jobs OUTSIDE of Wisconsin – IN Illinois. Just a guess. Now, if some of those people are off the unemployment chart, will Walker claim a victory for reducing the unemployment rate in Wisconsin? You bet he will.
He will claim that it is all part of his leadership and the “bold and courageous” decisions he has made. Most of those decisions must be made as he is traveling out of state to raise money for his Recall election. He ended his speech with this: The most powerful tool we have is the truth. He wants us to spread the truth. He wants us to share the truth. I feel that the Walker administration has or is manufacturing their own version of the truth – and that this “truth” is what he is spreading. I think it must work kind of like a rash of some kind.
I also wonder if Wisconsin will ever get this year back. IF we did not have to piss around with shady deals (he said nothing about removing collective bargaining when running)… the protests, the party of NO mentality and the ramming of things down everyone’s throat – plus the time and effort and planning to re-run for Governor – on both sides, what in Wisconsin could have been accomplished in this year? Anything positive?