In My Opinion
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker wants to axe teachers’ collective bargaining rights and oblige them to contribute 5.8% of their salaries to cover pension costs and more than double their health insurance contributions. If union representation is crippled, he can in future make any demands on teachers that he wishes.
Moreover, if teachers protest, he threatens to call out the national guard.
Given all the other costs rising in society, the unemployment, and all other challenges facing the working and middle classes, Gov. Walker wants not only to take away a sizeable proportion of income but to cripple the ability of the teachers to respond.
These moves are dressed up under the rubric “fiscal conservatism.” But the problem with this philosophy for me, as I said last week, is that it actually produces a transfer of wealth from the many to the few and it does so arguing that this is the only way to go to balance budgets instead of looking at where the largest amount of money goes and that is to projects of the military-industrial complex.
In the guns or butter debate, it seeks to limit butter rather than limit guns.
Instead of ending the cost of developing and acquiring such weapons of war as airplanes, aircraft carriers, missiles, tanks, space-based weapons, arms and ammunition, detection systems, and so on, “fiscal conservatives” want to end “entitlement,” workers’s rights, and social spending.
Speaker Boehner for instance says: “We are going to cut spending.” Alright, Let’s cut military and defense spending in half. Can you imagine the uproar if such a cut in spending were advocated? All of a sudden, Republicans would shift their position from being cutters to spenders, overnight.
But so long as the proponents of cuts to social spending dress themselves up as “fiscal conservatives” the public looks upon them as having the welfare of the nation at heart. In fact they are the indispensable front-line troops of the national-security state and the plutocracy. Whether they participate knowingly or are duped into adopting a political philosophy of “entrenchment,” “austerity,” or whatever it’s called, fiscal conservatives, in my opinion, are serving the military-industrial complex, the national-security state, and the plutocracy.
(1) Price tag at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Northrop_Grumman_B-2_Spirit#Program_costs