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February 17, 2011, 1900 (PST) -- CULVER CITY -- Anyone who was aware of it was captivated by events in Wisconsin today as the Republican Governor, Scott Walker, a power player on the rise in Republican circles, triggered (I think deliberately) massive protests reported to be as high as 100,000 around Madison with an estimated 10,000 peacefully occupying the state capitol. He had moved to almost unilaterally revoke all collective bargaining rights for state employees, especially teachers. He was going to slash pay and eliminate benefits.
I don't have to make the comparison to Egypt. The protesters (mostly teachers, students, parents and union members) did it themselves in placards, chants and interviews. They should be upset, because their collective bargaining rights are on the table in a very (conveniently) poorly executed, high-handed bitch slap. This is a test case for what TPTB need to plan for when it happens in Illinois, New Jersey, New York, Michigan and California.
The bill (promoted by Newt Gingrich) allowing states to go bankrupt is very much alive in the House. And as I've been saying for months now, almost as soon as it has passed we're going to likely see four states go down in a matter of a few weeks. Wisconsin is not known for being an historical locus of violent civil unrest. The cheese is good. These were the most polite, well-dressed, well-behaved, angry people I have ever seen. On the other hand Newark, Detroit, Chicago and Los Angeles were home to the most-violent and bloody urban riots of the 1960s. In 1968, (the year of Tet, MLK, and RFK), the U.S. government was quite-accurately viewing the unrest as a revolution. I know. I remember it all on many levels. I have also seen the classified and unclassified documents from the era. Those cities, where thousands of people died in riots which brought the National Guard and Army to the streets, are also in states that are about to go bankrupt very soon. If Wisconsin is any indicator then we must prepare for a great deal of bloodshed because Chicago, NY, Newark and L.A. unions aren't going down without a fight.