Tuesday, December 24, 2019

The Return Of The Walker-Grinch

If one was to believe Scott Walker, he is a true Christian and a champion of Christmas. He goes on Twitter, copying and pasting Bible versus and he shows just the right amount of faux outrage about whether it's called a Christmas tree or a holiday tree.

But his behavior quickly belies that false front.

Six years ago, on Black Friday, Walker sent out a campaign fundraising email that took the world's breath away by basically telling people to take Christmas away from their children:

Instead of venturing into the cold this Black Friday, stay in and give your children a gift that will keep on giving.

This year, we are celebrating the Holiday Season with a Black Friday special that is better than any deal found in stores. Donate $5, $10 or $25 to help Governor Walker get reelected and save your children from a future of double-digit tax increases and billion dollar budget deficits.

Instead of electronics or toys that will undoubtedly be outdated, broken, or lost by the next Holiday Season, help give your children the gift of a Wisconsin that we can all be proud of. ...
Now, Walker is at again.

He wrote a barely intelligible essay in which he politicizes Christmas by portraying Santa Claus as a socialist and then painting Christmas as a nightmare. Here is a sampling of his insanity:
Imagine if Santa were a socialist.

Everyone would get the same thing for Christmas. There would not be any creative or handmade gifts. Each would be a bland, standard-issue, non-offensive, gender-neutral gift designed by a bureaucrat in the North Pole.

In fact, Santa would no longer be male and most likely would be gender-neutral. All references to him or his in the stories about Santa would be removed so as not to offend anyone. No more white hair and beard as Santa would not want to be confused with a boomer.

Gifts would be given regardless of whether someone was naughty or nice. There would be no regard for Christmas Spirit or work ethic. It would not matter if you believe in Santa Claus or not, everyone would receive the same gift.

And about half of us would be paying for everyone else’s gifts. Forget about charity. Santa would have a comfy government job and many of us would pay much higher taxes to cover the costs of all of the gifts given out each year.

If Santa were a socialist, he would get around to delivering gifts about as fast as most socialist nations get around to providing essential government services — which means you’d probably get your presents some time next summer. Clearly, he and his helpers would not be working on a holiday — even at time-and-a-half — and certainly not if it wasn’t spelled out in their contract. So you can kiss Christmas Eve goodbye.

Santa’s helpers would be called vertically challenged and uniquely eared. All references to “elves” would be branded as insensitive. Those who used that language would be shunned.

Rudolph and the other reindeer would be banned over the next decade under the socialist Green New Deal. Like cows, they pass gas, and the democratic socialists’ plan would eliminate all of these animals who flatulate.
In all honesty, Walker probably didn't write this or at least not by himself because all the words are spelled correctly, which is beyond Walker's capabilities.

Walker ends his little diatribe by simply stating that Santa isn't a socialist so everything is just dandy. However, he doesn't say what he thinks Santa is. Knowing Walker, he wishes Santa was a capitalist, which is just silly.

In Walker's world of a capitalist Santa, only the worthy kids would get presents, meaning white children of wealthy parents who donate to him and other right wing causes. Children with brown or black skin aren't worthy. Neither are children from poor families. These little urchins don't deserve anything nice.

In Walker's world, Rudolph and the other reindeer would all be dead, shot by wealthy campaign donors, who had the heads mounted as trophies in their dens. The few presents that would be delivered each year would be done with fleets of gas-guzzling, smoke-belching trucks and vans.

In Walker's dream world, the elves would be alive but severely malnourished and sickly, because a decent profit margin can't be maintained by providing such luxuries. In other words, the elves would be the victims of the rebirth of slavery.

In Walker's world, you can forget about even seeing Santa. He doesn't have time for that claptrap. He's going to be off golfing at Mar-A-Lago with Trump and hiring lobbyists to give him bigger and bigger tax breaks even though he's never paid any taxes in his life.

But fortunately, Walker is full of shit. Santa doesn't charge for presents and he doesn't discriminate. Santa makes sure all children have the best Christmas they can, regardless of their skin tone or socioeconomic backgrounds.

The elves would be well taken care of of because Santa knows that productivity is highest when the workers are happy and healthy. Hell, he'd probably let them unionize. Likewise, the reindeer would also be well fed and well taken care of because he wants the reindeer to be happy. An unhappy reindeer won't fly.

But Santa isn't real in either scenario. If he were real, people would be able to see through Walker's bullshit and would never have elected him or anyone like him in the first place. Also, if Santa were real, Walker and his ilk wouldn't be getting presents or even a lump of coal. They all would be receiving jail sentences.

Friday, December 13, 2019

WISGOP Just Can't Get Enough Voter Suppression

Republicans really, really hate it when people vote. They know that the more people that vote, the worse things will go for them. But instead of coming up with policies that the people would support, the Republicans would rather just squash the voice of the people. One would be hard pressed to find where this is truer than Wisconsin.

There was the sordid gerrymandering which was done in secret which boxed in Democrats so badly that even when they receive the majority of voters, they still have a minority in the legislature.

The Republicans also passed a Voter ID law so oppressive that it's caused an estimated one percent reduction in voter turnout:
How much did Wisconsin’s voter identification requirement matter in 2016? We conducted a survey of registered nonvoters in the counties surrounding the cities of Milwaukee and Madison to estimate the number of registrants who experienced ID-related voting difficulties in the 201 presidential election. We estimate that 10 percent of nonvoters in these counties lack a qualifying voter ID or report that voter ID was at least a partial reason why they did not vote in 2016, and six percent of nonvoters lacked a voter ID or cited voter ID as their primary reason for not voting. Theoretically, we argue that voter ID requirements ‘‘directly’’ affect voters who lack qualifying IDs but also ‘‘indirectly’’ affect voters who are confused about their compliance with the law. We find evidence of such confusion, with many respondents mistakenly believing that they did not have th necessary ID to vote when they actually did. Our analysis permits us to calculate bounds on the possible turnout effect in 2016. Most of our credible estimates suggest that the voter ID requirement reduced turnout in these counties by up to one percentage point.
For their latest stunt, the right returned to one of their favorite things - voter caging.

The misnamed Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty - a Bradley Foundation front group - filed a law suit demanding that nearly a quarter million voters be purged from voter rolls because they may have moved because they didn't respond to a letter within a month to voter caging letters.

Oh, and in what I am sure is just pure coincidence (not really), these voter caging letters just so happened to not be sent out in an impartial manner, but to target Democratic areas and areas with the highest African American populations, like Milwaukee and Madison:
The letters went to about 7% of Wisconsin's registered voters, but were concentrated more heavily in some parts of the state than others.

Milwaukee and Madison — the state's Democratic strongholds — account for 14% of Wisconsin's registered voters but received 23% of the letters.

Across the state, 55% of the letters went to municipalities where Democrat Hillary Clinton out-polled Trump in 2016.
This decision will be almost certainly appealed immediately but don't hold your breath for a better outcome.  The right wing special interest's control five of the seven seats on the Wisconsin Supreme Court.

The real kicker is that these right wing snowflakes are the first to scream about changing the will of the people when something like holding a criminal Republican president* accountable for his criminal behaviors.