20 February 2011
Tunisia, Egypt, Wisconsin
Wisconsin? Rather than have their rights quashed by a strident governor, members of public unions are protesting the governors machinations to deny them the right to bargain as a group. They have shown a willingness to make financial concessions, but they are not willing to give up their shared voice. As the Tunisians, Egyptians, and others throughout the middle east have shown, it is only through that collected voice are they heard. I only hope that Wisconsin is merely a beginning in this country. Entrenched corporate self interest has been well represented in this country for too long and is stifling true innovation. It is not about capitalism, it is about protection of market share. The current power and money are protecting their turf, to the detriment of the poor and middle class. Ultimately to the detriment of our environment. It has put a block on any meaningful progress on climate change, health care, and a broad spectrum of other issues that are crippling our economy and quality of life.
My cheers for these people in Wisconsin, for challenging this attempt to silence their voice. Throughout the middle east, ordinary people have so far overthrown two dictators in the region, and have their sights on many more. Tunisia and Egypt were relatively non-violent - very few deaths. Do we Americans have the same commitment? I am afraid we are still too well fed. But I could be wrong - we need to look to Wisconsin.