"The Center" Rings Hollow | WisCommunity

"The Center" Rings Hollow


Steven Walters, writing , bemoans the animosity being generated in Madison by the attempts to recall state legislators and Gov. Scott Walker. Walters makes an analogy that suggests the recall effort is a matter of jealousy, as if the state's Democrats are simply being petty. I think Walters misses the point.

Walters fears that the political "paralysis" of the recall battle will prevent the cooperation necessary to approve new mining rules for creating a huge strip mine in northern Wisconsin. While the mining corporation predicts the mine will create as many as 700 jobs, such a mine will also, judging from other strip mines in the state and nation, destroy the original landscape and pollute the air and water, a trade-off many living in the area are not willing to accept.

What's needed in Wisconsin and the rest of the nation is, among other things, a strip-mining moratorium coupled with public investment in diverse, clean, sustainable work in job-poor rural (and urban) areas funded by raising taxes on the big and rich;  short of that, a stalemate that prevents harmful rules and laws isn't the worse that could happen in our Republican-controlled state.

The recall fight is, like the Occupy Wall Street movement, a democratic mode of protest fueled by populist anger and principle. Sometimes compromise is neither possible nor ethical, and those who urge "the center" are now giving a hollow legitimacy to things and people that are just plain wrong.


October 24, 2011 - 10:28am