Wednesday, 23 February 2011

A Nostradamus View of Wisconsin

I will put on my Nostradamus hat and predict the outcome of the Wisconsin mess.

First, in around two weeks....with no Democratic state senators returning....the governor will take his action of handing out dismissals to 1,500 state workers in the state.  These 1,500 folks will get upset in a hurry and ask the union what they will do to protect them.  The union will stand there and likely be pushed into the corner....they will have to strike across the board throughout Wisconsin.  It'll be a brief three-day strike....with the Governor not moving an inch.

The 1,500 folks will then ask the union what is next....and the union representatives will just stand there and scratch their heads.  Then they will ask the President to send in a former senator to negotiate this situation.  Some poor retired senator who didn't really care to work anymore....gets a call the next evening by the President and is rushed out to Wisconsin.

The Governor is kinda surprised because there's not much to negotiate.  What's done....is done.  The Senator will chat for an hour....trying to figure out what can be done and at the conclusion....realize that if he just had something to offer....but there is nothing...then he could get something out of this deal.  So he leaves and reports negative results to the President.

So finally, the President calls the union folks and suggests this radical approach.  Offer up a two-year suspension on collective bargaining in the state of Wisconsin.  A week will pass because no idiot in the union structure wants to announce this as a strategy.  So they finally offer a two-year suspension, and the governor counters by suggesting a five-year suspension.  Finally, they come to agree on a four-year suspension.  They won't dare call it a suspension of collective bargaining....there will be some invented term that a Harvard guy invents....which confuses everyone, especially the union membership and Fox News.

The Governor calls back the 1,500 workers and everyone pats themselves on the back for successfully beating down the Republicans and the Governor.  The truth be told....collective bargaining disappears as a unwelcome guest for four years and will simply reappear again....at another time....another place.

As for the twenty other states in similar circumstances?  Well....the four-year suspension deal will suddenly appeal to a bunch of folks.

As for state bankruptcy.....which hasn't been mentioned at all over the past month?  Well....somewhere in the midst of the summer months....California will finally appear in Congress and ask for some legislation that will allow a state to declare bankruptcy and then rewrite all pension fund requirements.  If you thought that this episode in Wisconsin was a big mess....just wait till summer comes.

DC, The Lincoln Navigator, and Woes

I blogged a few days ago about this political mess brewing in the locals of DC....which probably won't make it into any national news item.  I won't rehash that part....but there is fresh new bits and pieces over the city council man involved and his fancy Navigator.

Apparently, as things unfolded and this Navigator was being hauled to DC....it was against a deadline of sorts.  The city's inauguration was coming up shortly and they wanted to have the vehicle ready to go upon arrival.  There was one problem though....as two cabinet members and two city administrators got personally involved and probably were all putting in two or three hours a day in this episode...there was the issue of the tag.

The original paperwork was not on hand to process and get the vehicle a tag so it could be part of the city inauguration.  Rules are rules....you need the original paperwork at the city tag office.

Well...someone decided that this was a circumstance of which a copy would be sufficient.  You could ask the tag folks how many times in a one year period they'd do this without the original...and they'd admit it just doesn't happen.  You could go to most tag offices throughout the US....and nobody processes paperwork without the original vehicle registration paperwork in front of them.

So far, no one can cite where this exception to policy exists.....at least on camera.

The Navigator?  Well....as of yesterday....the city councilman who triggered all of this has now given the vehicle up.  He thinks that it's become a magnet for attention.  The problem now?  The lease can't be dumped for at least seven months, and I suspect that there is a fair amount of money to be put down....to cancel out of this.  What will the city council chief drive in the meantime?  No one knows.  He'll probably keep quiet on this business for a while.