Saturday, March 19, 2011

Kapanke still not getting it as riled Holmen School Board Vents Anger.

So how well are state residents taking the dictatorial government takeover and union busting by the Republican Party?

One recall target was blindsided by the public anger his vote to break up unions generated. He really didn't know:
La Crosse Tribune: State Sen. Dan Kapanke was in the hot seat for 90 minutes Monday night, when Holmen School Board members criticized and questioned the Republican before dozens of sign-toting spectators. 
Kapanke, who recently voted in favor of Gov. Scott Walker's controversial budget that curtails public unions, told the board the legislation gives them more local control. And he said the Senate acted legally. But Kapanke's talking points did little to quell a board clearly riled by the vote. 
"We need leaders who stand up and say this isn't right. It's sad," Board President Tim Medinger said. Medinger disparaged the leadership shown by the Senate and its efforts to break public unions. "You can't help but wonder about the message," he said. "Do the ends justify the means? … Can't you say stop?" 
The crowd hooted and hollered when Kapanke responded. 
If there were any Kapanke supporters in the room or on the board, they were silent.
It went on like this for a long time:
Medinger expressed bitterness at what he said was an assumption that every organization with union employees have bad relationships with them. "You're making an assumption that our association has been unwilling to work with us, and that is not true in this district.""I don't question that," Kapanke said, which brought roars from the crowd. 
"You did not give us tools like raising taxes," board member Cheryl Hancock said. Hancock, explained that when the district was mandated with the cuts, it was the good relationship it had with the unions that helped to fill the gap. "Not only did they fill that gap, they went beyond," Hancock said. "I have every confidence we would have done that whether you legislated that or not." 
"The tools you gave us are not the tools we want," board member Elizabeth Kamprud said. "You gave us muscle. But we don't want to use it. You're taking away my income, their choices, their brilliance. We have no future as a state. 
Hancock and Board members Anita Jagodzinski expressed concern that ... voucher programs would inevitably lead to the privatization of public schools and wanted to know whether Kapanke supported privatization of public schools. "I support the voucher system in Milwaukee," the senator said. 
When asked by Hancock if he supported waiving some teacher requirements for licensing, he said that no, on the face of it, he didn't understand the rationale behind it. 
Jagodzinski concluded her comments by saying, "This has been the saddest month of my 48 years in my state. It is heartbreaking. I don't think anyone in the state feels they are listened to in this state." 
"People are called thugs. What can you do to repair this? How do we fix our state?"
Oh boy. It appears obvious now the crowds in and around the Capitol over the last three weeks did reflect how Wisconsin feels about this political attack on the middle class, and Republicans are finding that out.


  1. The most surprising bit of new information I got from watching the board meeting was a first glimpse of Kapanke's strategy to divide constituencies and pit them against each other. When confronted with the harsh reality that his school-budget-gutting legislation will create in his district, he repeatedly tried to shift the focus onto "other municipalities," which he says are facing cuts that are not as large. As hard as he tried to stir up resentment among this one set of local working people, against other sets of local working people, however, none of them seemed even slightly interested in his cheap bait.

  2. No one can tell me that rural Wisconsin doesn't know how democracy works. Let the good folks of little Holmen show the world how it's done.