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In Wisconsin today, as everybody knows, we are locked in what can be regarded as an existential battle going on between the forces that see value in average, everyday working people, fair compensation, and a voice in the workplace, and those that see these people as a fundamental threat to the well heeled and their contemporary version of laissez faire economic policies and interests. I digress. As I was teaching a class recently, I came across a quote by abolitionist Wendell Phillips that I think really reflects our governor. "He is a first rate, second rate man." Phillips was referring to President Lincoln and his vacillations on whether or not he should enact some sort of order that would lead to emancipation of slaves.
I understand the historical context is vastly different, at least superficially, between that situation and our situation in Wisconsin. And I am certainly not correlating Walker to Lincoln. Lincoln at least struggled with his inaction. Walker, and his G.O.P. cohorts seem gleeful in their efforts at crushing the strong voice that unions have given average people in Wisconsin. I know that their moves are self-serving and political in nature. I don't like it, but I can understand it on some level. But there is an additional, personal joy they seem to elicit from their actions. That joy is what ensures that Walker will always be a second rate person, both as governor, and in a few months...a private citizen...