Sunday, September 16, 2012

Another Shocking Development In Fitzwalkerstan, Inc.

The Wisconsin State Journal is reporting that Scott Walker is ready to end the requirement for inexpensive life-saving equipment in building codes. According to the article, he wants to end the requirement for homes to be equipped with circuit interrupters which help prevent electrical fires, electrocution and thermal burns. Walker also want to end the requirement for tamper resistant outlets which protect children from sticking things in the outlet and getting a shock or electrocuted.

Safety inspectors and public safety officials are flummoxed and deeply concerned about this proposal. They are relatively inexpensive, adding about $200 to the cost of a $200,000 home, yet have been proven to be life and property savers beyond value.

So why does Walker want to get rid of these safety devices?

I'll give you three guesses and the first two don't count.

If you guessed that it's pay back to some wealthy campaign contributors, you guessed right.

According to the article:
The Wisconsin Homebuilders Association was one source for the code-changing plan, confirmed Jerry Deschane, association vice president.

"We have talked to the department about some changes, mostly because of reliability problems with all three of those devices," said Deschane.
Long time readers may remember the name Deschane.

Jerry Deschane is the father of Brian Deschane, the college dropout with no experience but who does have two DWI's, whom Walker appointed to a $81,500 position in the state's Department of Commerce.

Dan Bice reported on the younger Deschane's "qualifications" for that position:
His father is Jerry Deschane, executive vice president and longtime lobbyist for the Madison-based Wisconsin Builders Association, which bet big on Walker during last year's governor's race.

The group's political action committee gave $29,000 to Walker and his running mate, Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch, last year, making it one of the top five PAC donors to the governor's successful campaign. Even more impressive, members of the trade group funneled more than $92,000 through its conduit to Walker's campaign over the past two years.

Total donations: $121,652.

That's big-time backing from the homebuilders.
After catching too much flak about this, Walker thought he'd resolve the issue by demoting Deschane to a $61,000 job for which he also was not qualified. Not only that, Walker bypassed two other much more qualified applicants.

In fact, this stunt was one of the things Walker got grilled on when he had to testify before a congressional committee:

Representative Bruce Braley (D-IA), the congressman who tore into Walker about this, also made a formal request for an investigation into this obvious pay for play business.

Too bad that the Republicans never allowed this to happen. If they had, they would have found another incident of Walker committing perjury. When Walker testified, under oath, that the hiring of Deschane was five levels below him, he was lying his butt off. It was Walker's Chief of Staff, Keith Gilkes, who "made the recommendation" for this hiring, regardless what the Commerce Secretary's opinion of his qualifications.

Now, this move to remove important pieces of safety equipment from homes as a pay back to a large campaign contributor is nothing new in Fitzwalkerstan, Inc. Walker has a long history of kowtowing to wealthy campaign donors.  But as the gentle reader already knows, when it comes to anything dealing with Walker, there's more. There's always more.

The reason Deschane the elder wants this done is, well, your guess is as good as mine since Deschane is just making crap up as he goes along (emphasis mine):
Deschane was critical of the AFCI, GFCI and tamper-proof outlets because "some electricians have been talking to us about reliability problems." A home security system or a sump pump, for example, can trip an interrupter, he said. And the tamper-resistant outlets, which use small plastic covers over the prong openings that are moved aside only when both sides are engaged at the same time, cause problems for "some people who have trouble putting plugs in those sockets."

He knew of no tests or statistics or reports that support those claims, but "the concerns we have raised come from complaints from people who have been installing (the devices) in Wisconsin."
So, now we have Walker being bought off to eliminate the use of these safety devices, they can't even give a valid reason for it, except for the mysterious, unnamed "them."

Ah, but there is still more (again, emphasis mine):
There is no timetable for the task, said department spokeswoman Angie Hellenbrand, who referred questions to Deschane, of the builders association, for more information.

The proposal estimates it will take 600 hours of staff time to develop the rules.
WTH? Now we have state officials deferring to lobbyists for answers on state policy?! And whose staff is going to be putting in the 600 hours of work to eliminate something that will be put back in two years when Kleefisch (Walker will be in prison by then) loses to whoever the Democrats put up against her? And who will be paying for it?

Knowing how Walker's masters' minds work, I'm guessing taxpayers will be paying the lobbyists' staff to come up with these rules, which will be so fouled up that it will take 1200 work hours to straighten them out again.

What sickens me the most out of this whole sordid affair is how Walker isn't even bothering trying to put on the airs of being a respectable man anymore, but is openly flaunting his corruption, thinking himself to be infallible.

As God as my witness, no one will be celebrating the news of his indictment more than I.


  1. Instead of calling others names like "lefty" and "king of the hate left" maybe, just perhaps you should read the darn article and see that Scott Walker does not care about his constituents getting electrocuted, he only cares about his special interest buddies and is willing to lie, cheat & steal for them and now he is being blatent about such dealings because he thinks he is above the law. Why would anyone support this man?

  2. Nice work, Capper. Pure pay for play politics. I never could have imagined this level of corruption in Wisconsin.

    1. Beavis is the Governor and Butthead runs the show from behind the curtain!September 16, 2012 at 8:03 PM

      Next up for Governor Walker: "Paint just hasn't been the same since they took the lead out!"

      Also, "Many doctors prescribe safe cigarettes to their patients!"

      The marketplace donates more, even if it doesn't know what is best.

  3. Capper, I think Anon 7:06 was looking at the "best of" quotes you have on the right side of the page and was thinking they were actual comments on this article. Hahaha!

  4. Ok, the first comment has me flummoxed. It is, however, a nice summary of your article. If I was building a house, or needing an electrician, I would insist on those safety features. They are such industry standards that I can't even imagine a licensed electrician doing it any other way.

  5. In addition to the homebuilders, this could be a kickback to those realtors and property managers who support Walker's bully career, as they would no longer be made to maintain their properties at current levels and could avoid minor fixes which enhance resident safety.

  6. I think that the former presidential candidate, right wing ultra-conservative, Rick Santorum said it best a the recent Value Voters Conference.

    Rick Santorum: ‘Smart people’ will never side with conservatives.

    I would guess that that would pretty much leave .... no smart people on the conservative side.

    Far be it from me to argue with Mr. Santorum.

    1. I thank you for bringing this to my attention!
      I guess conservatives do have one honest politician on their side.

  7. Next, he'll be gutting the regs on building materials.... bring back asbestos! will be his cry....

  8. Yes and mandate the use of cheap and toxic Chinese drywall in residential construction.
    Free trade baby!

  9. Ok, Now I have to ask this. Smoking bans were a product of insurance companies. Now with this BS I just don't think the insurance industry will let this go. Without a ground fault outlet for a swimming pool or hot tub, someone will die. Maybe many will die. And there is one thing insurance companies hate. That is paying out on a home owners policy for a death. I just don't see this going very far. Over the years it is the insurance companies and their lobbing that brought us smoke detectors, seat belts, air bags the list gets long. So anything like this that would put them in jeopardy just aint going to happen. They have a whole lot more money to pay off scooter.

  10. I honestly believe he does not spend even five minutes thinking about the ramifications of his words and actions. If a doner wants something, that's good enough for him.

  11. Anonymous see Anonymous above at 9/16/2012 11:25 PM

    That should explain the distinct possibility that this stupid move will very likely happen.

    Rick Santorum: ‘Smart people’ will never side with conservatives.

  12. "Without a ground fault outlet for a swimming pool or hot tub, someone will die."

    Yep - that's the whole point. Kill 'em off and that's less that have to be covered by the ACA. Brilliant! Who said Scooter was stupid?

  13. ... and just think, the more houses that burn down, the more they have to rebuild! What a shame for the Wisconsin Builder's Association.