Walker And Wackenhut: Odd Associations

On Rachel Maddow's show tonight she connects the dots between Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker's union-busting moves and his association with private security firm Wackenhut, who brought lots of unwanted attention to the US with their awful sexcapades in Afghanistan awhile back.

AlterNet has more:

Of course, the end of the Afghanistan War would mean that people with whom Walker is cozy would lose some important revenue streams. Remember Wackenhut, the war contractors that disgraced us by holding drunken, nude firelight romps in Afghanistan on the State Department’s dime? Walker got them a sweet privatized state security contract in a prior fit of “cost-savings” that failed to add up. But who needs to rein in death, destruction and obscenity when you can take a whack at the unions, right? Walker’s not actually interested in fixing a supposed emergency. He’s interested in paying off allies and zinging enemies, and you can tell that by his silence on war spending that’s bleeding his state taxpayers dry.

Oh look, here's some payback. Nothing like no-bid contracts to sell or lease public power facilities to pay back folks who might have an interest in Wisconsin's energy industry.

MSNBC did not have a transcript available, but the gist of Rachel Maddow's report is this: When Scott Walker was in charge in Milwaukee, he decided to fire the security guards who worked at the courthouse. Those security guards were public employees represented by unions. He had no grounds to fire them beyond saying that he could, despite opposition by the county Board. When they blocked him, Walker insisted that he could fire them because there was a "budget emergency." All of the union security guards were fired, and Scott Walker replaced them with Wackenhut private security guys.

This is why Wisconsin is so important. Walker got away with it once on a local level. Walker practices classic "Shock Doctrine" politics: Create a crisis, exploit the crisis, and do away with rights ordinary people have had for years. As part of the process, privatize public services so the "market" can make adjustments.

During the height of the health care town hall Tea Party protests, not even a fraction of the numbers in Wisconsin showed up, but to hear the media tell the tale, the Tea Party is the only populist, grass roots movement in the country. Yet 68,000 people showed up over the weekend in Madison. Thousands of others are protesting all around the country. This is where the line in the sand is, and if Walker is forced to back down, other governors will have to do the same eventually.

Fight on, Wisconsin. It's worth it. As for Wackenhut, it would be best if the market forces pushed it straight to hell sooner rather than later.


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