I am a state employee in Wisconsin. As you can imagine, I get a lot of email in my inbox from top-level State and University list-serves. You can also probably imagine that much of it ends up victim of the "delete" key. Well, today I got a Very Special Message, from Governor Scott Walker (via University Relations; he didn't email me personally), informing me of an exciting new rewards and incentive program here in my home state!
The opening paragraph made me glow with pride and tingle with anticipation:
Thank you for your service to Wisconsin. Our state is proud of the hard
work and dedication you bring to your job everyday. To express our
appreciation, we are creating a new State Employee Recognition Program
that will honor state employees who have gone above and beyond the call
Wow! After years of flat salaries, furlough days and revoked cost-of-living increases, in addition to being called "greedy" and "lazy," accused of "leeching" off the good upright taxpaying citizens of Wisconsin, you can imagine my relief at finally hearing words of praise and encouragement. At last! An opportunity for reward and recognition that wouldn't cost the taxpayer or suggest that the labor of state workers was actually worth financial remuneration in the form of wages! This was just the opportunity I was yearning for. Even if I didn't go "above and beyond," I could surely find a colleague who does deserve this distinction.
And, in a move of unimaginable generosity and beneficence, there would be three awards, not just one! I am sure that three award categories cover all the potential arenas of distinction my fellow state workers represent, from firefighters to law enforcement to research scientists to middle school teachers to speech therapists to social workers to folks at the DNR to the workers who snap my picture for the soon-to-be-mandated Voter ID card. Whew! If anything, three awards sounds a little TOO generous!
So I studied up on the guidelines for each award. After reading the guidelines I pondered. What employee could ever live up to the high standards outlined in each of the award categories? It was going to be a very special state employee who could attain such excellence.
Then it struck me. I knew exactly who was deserving of these awards. Someone whose excellence stood out amongst the hundreds of state workers here in Wisconsin. Someone whose tireless efforts were bringing prosperity and freedom to the citizens of the state. Someone who truly went beyond the boundaries of the expected in job performance. Someone who was responsible for major, even cataclysmic changes, over a very short span of time.
Read the award descriptions and see if you are compelled to agree with my choices.
The program will have three awards. The first will be for outstanding
customer service. We’ll be asking Wisconsin residents to nominate the
state employees who have impressed them with outstanding service.
When I think of excellent customer service, I think of that polite, tireless person behind the returns counter at Home Depot, or that chipper, friendly voice at the other end of the credit card 800 number. I applied those standards to my experience with state workers in Wisconsin, and one person came to mind above all. Perhaps because his call was recorded "for quality purposes." Perhaps because the call showed his dedication to the ethic of service.
I'm speaking of Governor Scott Walker, and the excellent customer service he provided to "David Koch" during their brief conversation about the unruly uprising of workers in Madison. Scott Walker displayed an eager toadyism and willingness to serve his "customer" above and beyond the bounds of decency, humanity, democracy, and the rule of law. Scott Walker's willingness to consider "false flag" techniques to discredit the Madison protesters is a model for all leaders to follow. The reference to his baseball bat was touchingly sweet. Scott Walker truly knows his customer base, and is willing and able to service their desires beyond all expectations.
The second award will be for outstanding innovation. We are asking you
to nominate your colleagues who have demonstrated innovation, ingenuity,
and creativity in problem-solving, efficiency, and cost-saving
techniques in carrying out their work.
Once Scott Walker entered my mind as a potential award winner, I couldn't overlook his astounding record on cost-saving and innovative approaches to solving tough fiscal and ideological problems. After all, there is no greater problem than public school teachers. They are responsible for failing schools, failing children and the squandering of taxpayer billions.
Scott Walker truly put the "tool" in "toolbox" with his suggestion to not only cut funding to schools, but to prevent local municipalities from raising taxes to make up the shortfall. It's a win! The creative hamstringing of local government practically guarantees that schools will further fail, and it is a short path to ending public schools altogether. That is what I call ingenious! You don't need art in schools to think "creatively." Scott Walker is an inspirational case-in-point.
The third award is for ongoing dedication. This award is for the unsung
heroes who serve as role models to other employees; the employee who
always pitches in to help, who consistently exhibits a positive and
helpful attitude, and always “goes the extra mile” to assist his or her
I work with some good, generous people, and I tried very hard to think of a close colleague who might qualify for this last award. Alas, I failed. When I thought about what my co-workers have done for each other, I realized that these favors were penny-ante efforts in the grand scheme of real help. My colleagues only went the extra block, not the extra mile. However, I had some very recent examples of a state employee truly reaching out and helping friends and colleagues with real assistance. Not just friendliness, helpfulness or positivity, but assistance in the form of money and power.
Once again, Governor Walker came out as an astounding champion of colleague assistance. When the young and aspiring mistress of his friend and fellow Republican Randy Hopper needed a well-paying job with the state, she was granted one, at a higher salary than her better-qualified predecessor. And when Scott Walker was looking to fill the position of bureau director at the Department of Regulation and Licensing, he found the young, unqualified son of a major donor to appoint to state government. That young man was so deserving that he was almost immediately promoted to a position at the Department of Commerce with a hefty raise!
Scott Walker has a real knack for finding unsung talent in need of a leg up and the generosity to make sure it happens. In fact, Walker's administration is a playground for cronyism to such a degree that just about any un- or under-employed Republican or friend of a campaign contributor can find a well-payed position irrespective of qualifications for the job. That is what I call "going the extra mile" in support of colleagues!
Of course, it is likely that Walker will face some competition for these awards. After all, Wisconsin is filled with State Employees who have an unbridled sense of self-worth and entitlement. I hope you will all join me in a campaign to nominate Mr. Walker for all three of these awards. The necessary form with which nominations must be made can be found here, at the Governor's website.
Join me in supporting one of the finest State Workers in the history of the State of Wisconsin!