Dear Scott Walker: NOW you want mining hearings up north!? | WisCommunity

Dear Scott Walker: NOW you want mining hearings up north!?

Mining the news for outrage, even while he undermines thoughtful public policy, Gov. Scott Walker [img_assist|nid=60764|title=Off with their heads|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=185|height=218]Thursday loudly criticized state senators Bob Jauch and Dale Schultz for their bipartisan opposition to the failed mining deregulation bill. The bill failed in the state Senate by one vote, thanks to Schultz's breakaway from other Republicans. Jauch voted against the bill along with all other Democrats. Walker told reporters the two senators (why just those two?) should go up to Ashland County and hold hearings to explain to citizens there why the mine and its promise of new jobs won't be coming along.

Walker's tirade was noisy but substantively wrong on several levels. For one thing, there could be a mine in Ashland County someday, if that development followed current mining development law. Of course, that would require mining firms to to actually deal with legiitmate environmental concerns. But Goegebic LLC has picked up its marbles and gone home, after failing to get its pals in the Wisconsin legislature to strip-mine existing anti-pollution and public-input provisions.

More egregious was Walker's call for hearings in Ashland County, after the fact. Funny, dat. The govenror and his legislative minions were not at all interested in holding public hearings in the affected region when the bill was still being debated, opting instead for a quickie session in southeastern Wisconsin, hundreds of miles away. But NOW the govenror of all Wisconsin wants hearings up north. It's another case of the GOP channeling Lewis Carroll: "First the sentence, and then the evidence."

You've got to marvel at how this current flavor of Wisconsin Republican constantly does everything ack-basswards. Far be it from Wisconsin's blustering but fundamentally timid lawmakers to actually find out in advance what the people think. Thus, there'll apparently be no deep, gigantic Gogebic strip mine, just another deep political hole the Walkerites have dug for themselves.


March 8, 2012 - 10:41pm