Tuesday 3.10.15 Unintimidated Review
Over the years, when getting together at some family function like a birthday or a holiday, I’ll hear tales told of something that happened while I was growing up. Usually, these stories are of me doing some awful thing to my brother and the circumstances involved. The telling of these historical moments is often done by my brother or perhaps by one of his kids – retelling something that they had heard of things we did to each other or to other people as kids.
The thing is, while I can kind of recall the story or while the events sound familiar, they might not always be exactly the way I remember things. This is if I remember them at all. It has been a few years since I was a kid and much has happened since then. I did not take notes and I did not take pictures. There were no computers or smart phones or internet where we could “post” every detail of the crap we pulled. Thank goodness.
The feeling of hearing about something you were involved in from another perspective is interesting. While the memories of things that happened 40 or 50 years ago is rather fuzzy, recalling things that happened to me in the last 4 or 5 years is much better. In fact, things I did 4 and 5 years ago were also sometimes documented with photos and actually posted online, like here on this blog.
If you are a glutton for pain, you’ve either come to the studio for rope or you have read this blog over the past couple of weeks as I’ve been scribbling things related to our Governor, Scott K. Walker. This guy has been in the headlines as he continues to bounce around the country – and England – to promote Scott K. Walker and continue to investigate whether or not he may decide to run for President in 2016. As long as he continues to investigate the option – and not really commit as a candidate – he can rake in an undisclosed amount of funds from an undisclosed group of millionaires and billionaires. He can also rake in dollars from a lot of people who can’t afford to support him with small amounts… maybe a 5 or a 10. These are people who know that once Scott K. Walker enters the oval office, things will be good. Taxes will be lowered and all of those good-for-nothing freeloaders will no longer be able to suck on the government teat, putting more real cash into the hands of the hard-working freedom loving taxpayers all across the United States.
In order for me not to stay in a complete lefty liberal bubble, I will actually venture out and read what the conservatives are doing, taking away, or obstructing. Knowing that Scott K. Walker is a possible 2016 contender, I figured I had better read his book: Unintimidated, A Governor’s Story and a Nation’s Challenge. I found the book on Amazon for $3.77 marked down from the original price of $28.95. How’s that for being conservative, huh? The book is co-authored by Marc Thiessen, former speechwriter for George W. Bush and Donald Rumsfeld. My guess is that Thiessen probably did most of the work as many of the paragraphs flow fairly well in a stream of words that make sense. There are actually a few large words used which made me kind of suspicious about who was speaking and who was recalling, or if the text was a cleaned up and smartened up version of the events.
I read the book. Not only did I read the book, I highlighted, marked, noted and re-read things. As I read the book – which is mostly about passing Act 10 in 2011 – it was as if my brother was telling me a story about the time (supposedly) when he was on the phone (corded phone with an actual dial) trying to make a date with the sister of a girl I used to date… and I happened to (again, supposedly) kick him in the balls while he was nervously trying to negotiate said date. Hijinks apparently ensued. Although I won’t confirm or deny that this actually did happen, it was an interesting story. Kind of like reading Unintimidated, A Governor’s Story and a Nation’s Challenge.
The thing is, I was in Wisconsin when all of this Act 10 stuff went down. I was in Wisconsin before that and even had the privilege of stepping on Governor Doyle’s wife as I was shaking his hand at the Governor’s Mansion one afternoon. No balls were kicked.
In Unintimidated, A Governor’s Story and a Nation’s Challenge Walker retells the same non-specific information that he tells in most of his public appearances, like at the Iowa Freedom Summit, CPAC, Club for Growth, the Iowa AG Summit… and many more. The only new information I gathered from the book was where he suggests that one of the mistakes he made along the way (Act 10) was in not being very clear about his intentions. I suppose if he had it to do all over again he would do it differently. I’m kidding, he would not. Everything was carefully planned and executed.
In fact, micro-managing, creative telling of facts and withholding intentions seem to be some of the tools he uses to his advantage. All during the protests we heard about things escalating, new rules for protests and protesters to follow. There were bullets sprinkled around the area and eventually, you had to go through a metal detector to get into the Capitol. There were a few unsettling moments for a few people (Grothman) and several celebrities made their way to speak on behalf of the Unions. One of those people was Academy Award winner, Susan Sarandon. Scott K. Walker refers to these people as “B-List” celebrities in his book.
It is very clear, reading this book, that Walker was going for the throat of the Unions the entire time. Simply put, Union dues not only pay for important things like training and safety, some of that money goes for lobbying… usually Liberal Lobbying. If there would be a way to take that money away from the Unions then the Conservatives would have a huge edge in Washington. There’s a considerable amount of time spent on rationalizing that Public Union workers should pay more for insurance and pensions, just like the rest of all of the poor private sector suckers out there. Once they pay more and the state or the schools have to pay less, there will be a giant windfall of money available to not only balance the budget but create a surplus. Unicorns will shit rainbows and sweet tasty marshmallows and it will never again snow or get below 50 degrees again in the great state of Wisconsin – going forward.
Scott and Marc (who spells Mark with a “C” like that anyway?) also give a few nut-kicks along the way. Most of all, they turn things around and suggest that none of this would have been possible without the aid of the protesters, union thugs and horrible violence towards the Walkers which caused everyone in the state to come to their side and even forget what all the hassle was about when it came time to re-elect him during the re-call election. There are some knocks on Mitt Romney for not being as smart as Walker. There are a lot of negative words about Obama. Just enough to spice things up.
Summing it up, it is a story of his agenda which was to eliminate Unions. Breaking the Unions was something that role model, Ronald Reagan, had started and Scott was going to take the rest of the way. Often, you will hear him tell about worrying that his state and his country won’t be the same or as great as the one in which he grew up. He would pray that his sons would grow up in a state and a country as great. Well, not that I remember everything as clear as a bell, but if he was born in 1967 (which he was) we were in the middle of a war where watching the beginning of the news each night was like watching the sports scores – telling us how many casualties there were in Vietnam that day. We were dealing with race riots and Jim Crow laws, prominent leaders were being assassinated, women had shittier rights than they do now (not a whole lot better now), there were gas shortages and we were completely fucking with people in the middle east which would kind of get us to where we are now. I don’t recall every douchebag who wanted a gun getting a gun and/or parading it around on their hip and/or shooting someone who entered their yard and then screaming about how they were freedom loving anything. Do you know how many times I would have been shot in those days? I entered a lot of yards. Well, I guess there was that one Halloween night… again, fuzzy memory on that.
The main message I got from this book is that Scott K. Walker has an agenda. He is going to run for President. When he was Milwaukee County Executive, he butted heads with Unions and would figure out a way to eliminate the problem. As a man who has done nothing but run for office for the last 25 years, he has no clue about what it is like to have an actual job, work for someone, lose a job or run a business. Any moral feelings that go along with any of that are not in his bones. With the help of generous donors who have aided him with funds as well as policy, he’s been groomed to move up in the ranks to a position where those donors can have some real teeth. Whatever he is doing, he will not tell you until things are so far in motion that not only can’t they be stopped, they can’t even be debated or discussed. Political rule trickery is the way to pass things and he won’t give anyone the courtesy of discussing his intentions until his way is signed into law.
If the book had told the story of Act 10 from start to finish and then the re-telling of the re-call election from start to finish – without repeating things six or more times… the book would have been a pamphlet. It would have been about 50 pages long instead of 270 plus.
At the recent CPAC meeting, we heard him suggest that if he could take on 100,000 protesters, he could take on terrorists across the globe (ISIS). In the book he begins to mention the protesters by describing them this way: “there were plenty of students, teaching assistants and leftover sixties radicals available for mass protests.” As mention of the protesters continues throughout the book, the condescending tone goes from that to thugs and imported Union plants bussed in from all around the country. He takes great pride in describing how his team of police and security would have to outwit the stupid protesters with decoy vehicles so no one would know where the Governor or other people were at certain times. Of course, the Governor also describes how actually staying OUT of Madison altogether turned out a whole lot better for him.
This is the kind of man who is now running for President. Proud of deception and non-transparency, he will discuss only that which he feels is superficially important. There will never be any specific details about upcoming plans, should he get into the White House. Instead, you will hear a very specific, non-descriptive generalization of things we’ve heard a million times:
Washington is broken. We are putting the choices/power/money back into the hands of the hard-working Wisconsin/American taxpayer. Washington uses a “top-down, government-knows-best philosophy.” He’ll tell you something and then creatively as a salesperson knows… will draw you back into the conversation you are already listening to by using word tactics such as (stopping) and then saying, “Think about that” and then continuing. He’ll use a long run on sentence that contains the words “not only” or “and not only” as well as the words “ultimately” and “going forward.”
Here’s an example for emphasis – my own version:
In 2012 the citizens of Wisconsin voted to keep Scott Walker in office. He faced a re-call and somehow the majority of Wisconsinites forgot what a douchebag politician he was. He will be President in 2016.
Edited version with Walker emphasis:
In 2012 the citizens of Wisconsin voted to keep Scott Walker in office.
Think about that…
He faced a re-call and not only did the majority of Wisconsinites forget that he was a complete douchebag politician, ultimately, he will be president in 2016, going forward.
Did it feel more emphatic or important reading it with his word tricks? If you listened to a speech and did not read the words… using the right cadence would you be more impressed with the first or second version? He’s counting on the second version. His team is coaching, training and experimenting daily on how to tweak all of this and make this guy sound like he’s the right choice.
All without telling you a damn thing you want to hear or need to know. And, he’s counting on that as well.
Just as he describes the IQ of the 2011 protesters, he’s counting on the rest of you to NOT ask tough questions and be perfectly happy with chanting the “freedom luvin’ ‘Merica” speeches that don’t actually help when it comes to knowing how he will deal with real issues. He’ll drop just enough quotable quotes on you so you can jump on the ‘Merica bandwagon and re-chant the shit out of them.
How’s that for a huge kick in the balls?
While reading Unintimidated, A Governor’s Story and a Nation’s Challenge, I discovered a cool thing. Since I’m old, using cheater glasses helps. Since I only use my cheaters when I’m reading a book like this or doing other small work, it is great to always have the glasses near the book. So, I came up with this groovy trick…
Take a couple of rubber bands and run them over the book cover. Take your cheater glasses and just use the rubber bands to hold them in place. They stay with the book when you pick it up and/or move it around.
Not only is this clever, after you read a little and get frustrated, you can use the rubber band to snap this guy right in the eye…