Might I humbly suggest that your lute-fish-eating neighbors-to-the-north-of-Muscovy, well, they might be in need of a word of encouragement, seein` as how the duly elected Democratic members of their State Senate done up and run.
And they run…south…oddly enough. Strange times, huh?
Anyhow, brought me to mind of a lovely Celtic ditty: “When danger reared its ugly head, he bravely turned his tail and fled….” (apologies to Monty Python)
What a bunch of sissies (although that’s unfair to sissies).
They can’t be bothered to actually show up and, do what? Dig ditchesnoplow fieldsum, no, againdig septic tanks…artificially inseminate cows…. NO…. just show up and….cast…a…vote….
And yet this very week, people have died in Egypt, Tunisia, Bahrain, Iran, and doubtless other places for wanting….the RIGHT, THE ABILITY, THE POSSIBILITY…TO…CAST…A…VOTE….
Yours from the Doublewide, a very disgusted….JAB
The Czar is unfamiliar with Wisconsin state congressional rules, and so has little idea what the preferred recourse ought to be for this.
For readers unclear with what the Democrats really did, it goes like this. In order to prevent small groups of legislators meeting together, in secret or not, and passing all sorts of simple majority votes, you need to establish a quorum. A quorum is the minimum number of legislators required for the vote to be possible; without a quorum, you could have three jerks get together and pass all sorts of goofy laws.
In Wisconsin State Senate, the minimum number of votes required is 20. Right now, there are 19 Republicans and 14 Democrats. Stay with us.
So we have this bill on the table to bring Wisconsin unions more into line with the rest of the country (no matter what Ezra Klein thinks this is about, as he writes another opinion piece based on information mined from an email a friend of his sent him). And the unions, who recognize this is the biggest attack on their unearned benefits since last week, took to the streets.
Here comes the vote. And all the GOP senators are going to support it, which is a clear majority. Wait, the Democratic senators remembered, isnt there a 20-person quorum? If we dont show up, there will only be 19 law makers present… there isnt enough for a quorum, and the vote cant take place. But we could be arrested and forced to attend! Not if we leave the state, they realized, and took off.
This is a bit like trying to avoid a bad report card by running away from home. Whether it consists of dereliction of duty or whatever will be up to the Senate rules. Were the Czar a Republican Wisconsin state senator, he would be looking very eagerly to see what penalties exist for this and pressing for full punishment. Even if this is just censure or a verbal reprimand.
But this is up to them to decide. The Czar thinks, though, that the voters of Wisconsin should be screaming for something to be done. After all, these Democrats were elected by the people to do a job, and like frightened children, they ran to hide inside Grandmas shed rather than face Dad. The reason this is so stupid is because it accomplishes nothing. Why not show up, cast No votes, and be on record? It will have to happen eventually; if they propose to hide forever, they will quickly find themselves removed from office. The Wisconsin Supreme Court and Governor will clearly agree to that.
On the other hand, they have given the GOP senators days to turn public tide against the Democrats in the state, and you can guess correctly that this is exactly happening.
However, as to the irony of the second half of your note, the Czar is reluctant to draw any compare-or-contrast moments to Egypt, Bahrain, Yemen, Tunisia, Libya, or Iran: there is evidence a lot of the protestors in Madison are doing just thatunder the childish fantasy that their invented, inflated grievances were inspired by or compare to the frustrated riots of those countries. But this is nothing more than leftist elements in organized labor trying to prove their flickering relevancy by starting trouble, and 14 Democratic lawmakers under the impression that this silly stunt will do anything but make the inevitable worse for them.
This is a bone-headed move that will result in the same outcome voting-wise, but haunt their professional records right into the next election cycle. And they can fantisize all they want about for the next 15 seconds that the magic that won over Egypt will work in Wisconsin, but the reality is already coming come…even if they are not.
Божію Поспѣшествующею Милостію Мы, Дима Грозный Императоръ и Самодержецъ Всероссiйскiй, цѣсарь Московскiй. The Czar was born in the steppes of Russia in 1267, and was cheated out of total control of all Russia upon the death of Boris Mikhailovich, who replaced Alexander Yaroslav Nevsky in 1263. However, in 1283, our Czar was passed over due to a clerical error and the rule of all Russia went to his second cousin Daniil (Даниил Александрович), whom Czar still resents. As a half-hearted apology, the Czar was awarded control over Muscovy, inconveniently located 5,000 miles away just outside Chicago. He now spends his time seething about this and writing about other stuff that bothers him.