The Less Discussed Part of Walker’s Wisconsin Plan: No-Bid Energy Assets Firesales.

Have you heard about 16.896?

The fight in Wisconsin is over Governor Walker’s 144-page Budget Repair Bill. The parts everyone is focusing on have to do with the right to collectively bargain being stripped from public sector unions (except for the unions that supported Walker running for Governor). Focusing on this misses a large part of what the bill would do. Check out this language, from the same bill (my bold):

16.896 Sale or contractual operation of state−owned heating, cooling, and power plants. (1) Notwithstanding ss. 13.48 (14) (am) and 16.705 (1), the department may sell any state−owned heating, cooling, and power plant or may contract with a private entity for the operation of any such plant, with or without solicitation of bids, for any amount that the department determines to be in the best interest of the state. Notwithstanding ss. 196.49 and 196.80, no approval or certification of the public service commission is necessary for a public utility to purchase, or contract for the operation of, such a plant, and any such purchase is considered to be in the public interest and to comply with the criteria for certification of a project under s. 196.49 (3) (b).

The bill would allow for the selling of state-owned heating/cooling/power plants without bids and without concern for the legally-defined public interest.  This excellent catch is from Ed at ginandtacos.com (who, speaking of Madison, took me to the Essen Haus on my 21st birthday, where the night began to go sideways). Ed correctly notes:

If this isn’t the best summary of the goals of modern conservatism, I don’t know what is. It’s like a highlight reel of all of the tomahawk dunks of neo-Gilded Age corporatism: privatization, no-bid contracts, deregulation, and naked cronyism. Extra bonus points for the explicit effort to legally redefine the term “public interest” as “whatever the energy industry lobbyists we appoint to these unelected bureaucratic positions say it is.”

In case it isn’t clear where the naked cronyism comes in, remember which large, politically active private interest loves buying up power plants and already has considerable interests in Wisconsin. Then consider their demonstrated eagerness to help Mr. Walker get elected and bus in carpetbaggers to have a sad little pro-Mubarak style “rally” in his honor. There are dots to be connected here, but doing so might not be in the public interest.

It’s important to think of this battle as a larger one over the role of the state. The attempt to break labor is part of the same continuous motion as saying that the crony, corporatist selling of state utilities to the Koch brothers and other energy interests is the new “public interest.”

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114 Responses to The Less Discussed Part of Walker’s Wisconsin Plan: No-Bid Energy Assets Firesales.

  1. Great interception, Ed, Rorty – take it in for the score!

  2. PeakVT says:

    I’d like to see conservatives defend that little gem.

  3. Excellent post!

    What was it that Mussolini said about fascism; that’s it’s corporate rule of the government?

    Be brave Wisconsin—the fate of our children is now in your hands!

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  7. floridasandy says:

    you won’t see conservatives defending that gem. we already get that there is corruption in government. this proves that you can’t trust any of the politicians when it comes to government. i suppose that is why all the bill are 1500 pages long-so ALL government workers get something for themselves.

    that clause needs to be dealt with and perhaps the cowardly democratic representatives can come back and discuss this, since they are being paid to represent the peope.

    this clause still doesn’t take away from the fact that debt saturated homeowners can’t pay (or unwilling to pay) higher property taxes just because the teachers want more. asking people to open up their wallets more during a job destroying recession is both arrogant and ridiculous.

    i see a lot more criticism of teachers due to the union shenanigans, even though a lot of teachers are not in favor of this.

    • Tim says:

      Yes, damn those democratic representatives for not showing up for the quorum so that the republicans can pass corrupt bills. Damn them, not the republicans.

      Also, screw those damn teachers for actually submitting willingly to fiscal cuts in exchange for the right to continue collective bargaining. If only they would submit to the fiscal cuts they said they would.

      Oh wait. Your post is so filled with backpeddaling for republicans I can’t even take it seriously.

    • Ed says:

      History tends to repeat itself, and I can completely understand why you think the way you do, but the level of corruption has grown to be so pervasive in government that it becomes so mind boggling that it’s difficult to comprehend how it happened in the US. Believe me, if they screw the teachers your property taxes won’t go down. The working class should really get a grip on what’s going on here. It’s absolutely and provably a corporate money grab. Look how much they’ve sucked up so far, a few trillion, as far as anyone can tell which, coincidentally about what the deficit is. Not to belabor the point, but two wars, with contractors raking in billions and providing second rate service, and we gain nothing at the other end. They’re wars with nothing to win. Another couple of trillion without batting an eye. That’s your SS and medicare that you have been paying your hard earned money into. Just some thoughts…

    • judym says:

      I don’t know of one teacher favoring walker’s agenda. I work in a school. AND from all that I’ve heard following this story, the teachers and public workers have agreed to paying more for benefits. Quality of education will deteriorate. It’s a given. I hope your children are through school.

  8. floridasandy says:

    ps

    sorry for the previous typos but cannot fix them without an edit button.

  9. Lisa Graves says:

    Hey Mike!
    Thanks for putting these links out there!
    One of the links goes to a short report suggesting that the Rebublican Governors Association spent 3.5 million in Wisconsin, but we have a more in-depth report documenting that the spent $5 million against Barrett to get Walker in office, after David Koch wrote a personal check to the RGA for $1 million (which Murdoch matched from NewsCorp):

    http://www.prwatch.org/news/2011/02/9964/cmd-special-report-scott-walker-runs-koch-money

    • judym says:

      I’m sure the Koch Bros. are none too happy about the spotlight being shone on their business dealings. GO FBI !!!! Walker will be unseated…

  10. Whet Moser says:

    Not sure if I’m reading this quite right, but it looks like something similar was proposed back in 2005 (PDF), search for 16.896: http://legis.wisconsin.gov/2005/data/acts/05Act25.pdf

    • Kelly Bradford says:

      I am following this with great interest but some confusion, since I can find no reference to any kind of power plant owned by the state of Wisconsin. I don’t doubt for a second that something fishy is going on but… where are the power plants?
      Reply

  11. lpbbear says:

    Republicans are a disease.

    If we follow where their logic leads….why bother having a government? Why a country at all? Why not privatize the whole shebang? We’ll all just sit in our privatized houses and pay each other for the privilege of stepping out the door.

    (frigging morons)

    • Jewell says:

      Don’t worry, the (corporate-owned) GOP, who are not unlike the (corporate-owned) Dems, are making some headway in the arena of private homeownership, and prohibitions thereto. That is, you can extrapolate as much by looking at the current foreclosure crisis. When citizens are being foreclosed on when they haven’t missed a payment, then something is indeed fishy. It’s been said that the fish stinks from the head down, not the tail up.

      I think the Dem party should be forced to represent We, The People, so we can dispense with the “he said, she said” crap coming out of Washington.

    • boobar says:

      that is the idea. Ayn Rand’s wet dream come to life.

  12. Whet Moser says:

    OK, the Journal-Sentinel has more on what happened in 2005:

    http://www.jsonline.com/business/116204654.html

    In short: a Republican legislator proposed the sale, Gov. Doyle vetoed it. Nothing in the old language about no-bid contracts, but the language is similar.

  13. Whet Moser says:

    Noticed one more thing about the difference between the ’05 change that Doyle vetoed and the language in the 2011 repair bill: no wastewater treatment in the latter. Here’s ’05:

    “each state-owned heating, cooling, and power plant and wastewater treatment facility”

    and 2011:

    “heating, cooling, and power plant”

    Hmm….

  14. Orlin in Marquette says:

    This is a “non-issue” after reading the bill. It is a kind of “claw-back” amendment meant to liquidate politically popular but unprofitable energy concerns, IMO. This is a popular way to navigate legal issues and is the smart thing to do.

    • leftist says:

      Your comment is a “non-issue” after reading it. Why all the “quotes”? It’s funny, defending the Republican “governor” who is cutting education for “Wisconsinites” who might want to get a quality “education” and “learn” when it’s appropriate to use “quotes.”

      No one cares about your opinion- you are wrong.

    • lfm78 says:

      Allowing the sales might be a smart thing….but WITHOUT BIDS??? There’s really no excuse for that.

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  16. Joe Blow says:

    Unions are doing in WI what unions are good at: bullying people, scamming the public and feeding at the public trough without regard to the welfare of the people that pay the bills. Remember auto unions and what they did/are doing to the American automobile business. Remember what the unions did to the transportation industry, especially railroads, in America. About the only union I have any respect for is the UMW.

    • David and Charles Koch says:

      We’re David and Charles Koch, and we paid for Joe Blow’s comment. Keep up the good work, Joe.

    • leftist says:

      What Unions are doing in WI- accepting all off the Republican governor’s demand for anything that affects the budget, while rejecting the crushing of their union.

      Remember what German unions did to BMW and Mercedes? Man they messed them up.

      Remember what unions did to high speed rail in Europe? Those trains are always empty!

      Lay off the right wing kool-aid- try the facts for a change.

    • Madam Z says:

      I agree with “Joe Blow.” Of course, unions were beneficial to the downtrodden workers in the early part of the 20th century, when workers were treated like expendable animals. But as the century wore on, lots of protective national legislation was passed, agencies were established as watchdogs over industrial treatment of laborers. Child labor laws, 40 hour work week, minimum wage, OSHA and other agencies have eliminated or greatly reduced worker abuse. But then, unions got greedy and unreasonable in their demands, and as Joe says, they hurt American business, and drove much of it overseas.

      Today, most of the unions we hear about are public employee unions. Their demands for ever higher pay and benefits are unreasonable, in my opinion, considering that the taxpayers who are footing the bill do not, in most cases, have such generous benefits at their jobs. The various governmental bodies cave in to the unions demands, because they don’t have to show a profit, as businesses do. The government can just raise taxes and/or borrow money, kicking the can down the road.

      • leftist says:

        “Today, most of the unions we hear about are public employee unions. Their demands for ever higher pay and benefits are unreasonable, in my opinion, considering that the taxpayers who are footing the bill do not, in most cases, have such generous benefits at their jobs.”

        Wisconsin public employees just accepted massive pay cuts. Are you unaware of this fact which is available from most media coverage, or willfully ignorant?

        Another solution is to reunionize the private sector to recover the benefits that 30 years of libertarian dominance of public policy has taken away, instead of a race to the bottom that you propose. If your benefits are crappy and you’re not unionized, you have no one to blame but yourself and your coworkers.

      • Ed says:

        The fact is that union wages have not even kept up with inflation. Those labor laws you’re talking about have been quietly gutted in almost every state and at the federal level. There’s a storm coming and neither party can be depended on to do the right thing. They’re all in on it. You’ll see…….hope it’s not too late.

      • Barb Hartwell says:

        Madam Z
        Maybe some of what you say is true, but I worked in non union shops most of my life, and greed took over. First they cut our pensions, then raised our health care cost, made us work overtime until we dropped. We took pay cuts when we were told things were slow. Then we find out that things were not so bad after all. Then we find out that the business had made record breaking profits. I also remember watching people retire with dignity after 40 years of service, you will not see that anymore, they give you the boot after 30 years and say you cannot keep up anymore. So much for loyalty. This is why it is important to stick together on this.

      • joebob says:

        You completely misunderstood my sarcasm. Without the unions even non union employees would suffer. As for public employees-in Wisconsin there has been two years of salary cuts and benefit reductions already. People keep saying how the unions are bullying the government-how utterly ridiculous- public employees don’t even have the right to strike-they have no real power other than the power to negotiate with the state-whatever benefits public employees have, have been agreed to by the legislature and still the average compensation when comparing education and experience for public employees is 10-20 % lower than workers in the private sector, even when accounting for benefits. The benefits have generally been better because the salaries lag so far behind private sector jobs with similar training and experience required.

    • LC says:

      And ask Minnesota what unions did for the iron ore business!

      • Ed says:

        Please get your history correct. This foreign competition that everybody seems love so much is what did it. The govt. was complicit in this and gave corporations tax incentives to move operations to other shores. The kind of growth that corporations need just doesn’t exist in the US any more. We’ve pretty much spent everything we have. Just wait until the oil shortages start……….

      • Jewell says:

        I would suggest to you that you research exactly WHY unions came into being in the first place.

        I would suggest that you consider who drives the bigger cars, and owns the bigger houses -hourly-wage union workers, or the salaried executives at their corporate headquarters? Who actually MAKES the products at those companies?

        Think about it. I am not a union worker, but I don’t for one second believe that if we did away with unions, concessions ALREADY MADE by rank ‘n file workers here in America over the last 30 yrs would be the end-point of the abuse meted out by the corporatists.

    • Jewell says:

      Wow, you are either very young, or have a short memory. If you are a working person, you owe a lot to unions. You have bought into the biggest line of elite BS I’ve read yet.

      Did union workers kill the auto industry in America? No, you fool. The fish stinks from the head down, not the tail up. Would workers cut off their hands to spite their faces? No. Would they choose to ship their jobs to Mexico, as was done with auto parts manufacturers’ jobs? No. Get a grip.

      The big corporate boys would have you believe such tripe when just the reverse is true. Look at how the big boys wanted to cash in FOR THEMSELVES on corporate profits, but decided they couldn’t as long as they paid workers for agree-upon wages. What did they do instead? They closed plants & outsourced.

      Now, take a look at wages & salaries for rank ‘n file workers over the last 30 yrs relative to CEO pay. You have been sold a line of crap, and the amazing thing is -you bought it!

    • Barb Hartwell says:

      Did you not see the C.E.O`S on the news asking for a bale-out getting out of their private jets. Excuse me if anyone put them in a crisis it was their own greed.

    • joebob says:

      You’re right, businesses and governments would be so much more efficient and profitable without those pesky unions. No more overtime, the right to fire anyone at any time for any reason, no more pesky benefits to pay, no child labor laws, no weekends off for those lazy workers, no minimum wage, no 40 hour work week-and the “flexibility” needed to cut taxes and increase profits so we don’t have to pay for those pesky state services like schools, parks, hospitals, roads, child care, etc, etc.

  17. Lord says:

    Does Wisconsin have the recall?

    • Postina says:

      Yes, they do; I personally researched it the other day. In Florida, Rep. Rick Kriseman-D introduced a recall bill in Tallahassee Wednesday because we have no such law on the books. Before a recall can be set in motion, certain requirements have to be met. The subject of the recall has to have been in office at least a year. Petitions have to be circulated in a specific time frame and must contain a required minimum number of signatures.

  18. The Oracle says:

    Republicans have redefined “public interest” the same way they’ve redefined “public servant” if a Republican politician, with private greed and private profit replacing “public” in their warped and twisted right-wing soulless minds.

  19. Magpie says:

    You’ll understand, I’m just a Down Under boy and I’m not current with American English idioms.

    So, I apologise in advance for what may prove to be a rather stupid question.

    Anyway, there it goes: Have you blokes ever heard the word “looting”?

    Jus’ askin’…

    • Jewell says:

      G’day! Yes, we have, and we are aware that’s what happened when George Bush went before the country in the Fall of 2008, with Hank Paulson (the bastard) at his side and said, “We must bail these miscreants out NOW or suffer dire consequences!” And so it went.

      Theirs was a creeping fascism that is now virtually galloping across the American political & social landscapes. It’s really sad and I wonder just now long it will take before they truly piss off Americans and we revolt. I suspect not long because their brand of corruption is so systemic, so blatant -you’d have to be a complete nitwit to not see it.

      No, we don’t want to be socialists or communists. We want some sanity injected into our publicly-held offices and we’re not getting it. So, I suppose the inevitable -revolution- isn’t too far off. It seems to be the mood in several other places around the globe. Wonder why?

      • Magpie says:

        Hayagoin’, mite! [*]

        “We want some sanity injected into our publicly-held offices and we’re not getting it”.

        That’s a good start!

        Cheers

        [*] Aussie phonetic pronunciation guide only!

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  21. nearafara says:

    THANK YOU for this! I’ve reblogged, along with my perspective from within the Madison protests:

    http://nearafara.wordpress.com/

  22. M S says:

    Just a bit more on the power plants – when he sells them off to the Koch brothers, we WI taxpayers will be picking up the tab. The plants provide power to the university, prisons and I believe part of UW hospital. The sad thing is that our last gov approved conversion one of the plants to the use of biomass fuel, which would have created jobs, served as R&D in a new energy field, as well as reduced emissions. Of course Walker scrapped all of that. Now we know why.

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  25. CHForbesSr@msn.net says:

    Is there no end to Walker’s destructiveness? First he wants to destroy the unions. Now he wants to privatize his state’s energy plants. If anyone thinks that’s a great idea, talk to a few Californians where two giant energy corporations have the state in their often painful grip. Don’t worry, The United States, including Wisconsin, will never be a socialist nation. In fact, Wisconsin is a proudly individualist state. Truth to tell, the billionaire Koch Brothers and their Tea Party, billionaire Rupert Murdoch and Fox News, et al, are clearly bent on turning the United States of America into a plutocratic oligarchy. They must be actively blocked.

  26. Howard Wu says:

    Great post, adding your blog to my watch list and posting on FB.

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    • Bob Plugh says:

      ***
      16.896 Sale or contractual operation of state−owned heating, cooling,
      and power plants. (1) Notwithstanding ss. 13.48 (14) (am) and 16.705 (1), the
      department may sell any state−owned heating, cooling, and power plant or may
      contract with a private entity for the operation of any such plant, with or without
      solicitation of bids, for any amount that the department determines to be in the best
      interest of the state.
      ***
      Pennies on the dollar you say??? I quoted the section VERBATIM from the proposed bill. I fail to see how “best interest of the state” would be “pennies on the dollar”.

      What is that – you didn’t SEE that, or is it that you just can’t READ? Or, are you a union thug and just putting forth MISINFORMATION.

  29. Dictynna says:

    Is the Governor planning to buy a new plant, then turn around and sell it cheap to a private party?

  30. Dictynna says:

    Is the Governor planning to set up a new plant in the state, and then turn around and sell it cheaply to a private party?

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  33. laudyms says:

    Hey Mike- I was glad to re-post this at another site as well as link to it on my own blog. This crucial information needs to reach as many people as possible. Many thanks for a great article!
    Claudia

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  35. Bob says:

    How come nobody ever asks the question if these state owned utilities should have ever been stated owned in the first place? I submit that they shouldn’t have ever been state owned to begin with – government’s job is not to provide “services” or “utilities” but to protect liberty.

    Let them be sold. Or is that removing power from government?

    I am not left. I am not right. I am a libertarian. http://www.fee.org/pdf/the-freeman/0601Read.pdf

    • laudyms says:

      Public ownership keeps energy costs cheaper which benefits all businesses and residents.

      The big move to privatize all public utilities, the water supply etc will leave us prisoners in our own country- and that’s the last thing I’d expect a Libertarian to want.

      • Bob says:

        You clearly don’t understand markets or libertarianism.

        Probably because for the last century we’ve had a bastardization market system of business and government. The more government tries to “fix” problems the worse it gets.

      • laudyms says:

        Perhaps we’ll agree that enabling the Corporate State we’ve got now is not the answer.

      • Tim says:

        Actually, you clearly don’t understand markets. Privatization of services such as electricity adds an additional expense to the service- the maintenance of profits. You could throw in some mumbo-jumbo about how it would somehow be so much more efficient that prices would remain the same. That, of course, is contrary to the experience of most people after privatization of services- especially water (some saw price increases as soon as a week after).

        Also, you should know (if you know markets) that by more or less stabilizing (or subsidizing) the costs power, you encourage further economic activity, as the costs of price raises are fairly universal (causing increases of prices for many inputs). A good case study of this behavior is the 70’s, when increasing oil costs hit every sector of the economy. If you raise the costs of a basic input of the economy, you hurt the overall economy.

        That’s the entire argument for subsidizing industries- that it is worth it to encourage more economic activity elsewhere. It’s not a new argument, and it seems weak that you would insult someone else when (intentionally?) looking over this seemingly obvious fact.

      • Bob Plugh says:

        The “Public” NEVER does ANYTHING cheaper than private enterprise. EVER.

        Private schools typically pay LESS than public schools, yet they ACHIEVE far better results. Why is that?

        In general, if the government touches something, costs go UP, unions become involved, pensions MUST be paid, you get stuck with people making $23/hr who have a hard time using a screwdriver, etc.

      • Tim says:

        “Private schools typically pay LESS than public schools, yet they ACHIEVE far better results. Why is that?”

        Because you are dumb. I assume you didn’t think this one through, and realize that poor children (overwhelmingly correlated with lower performance) are overwhelmingly concentrated in the public school system, while private schools are too expensive, selective or too out of reach for poor children.

        I guess you didn’t learn much at private school, eh?

      • laudyms says:

        “The “Public” NEVER does ANYTHING cheaper than private enterprise. EVER.”

        That may be conventional wisdom (thanks to years of strident propaganda) but it is also patently false.

    • Tim says:

      Ensuring the liberty not to be gouged on necessary services seems like preserving liberty.

      Why is it that libertarians only want to preserve the liberty for someone else to fuck everyone over?

  36. Dadofiandi says:

    I was wondering if anybody has done the heavy lifting to see if any of the states where the Koch brothers made large donations, have written to allow the sale of their power companies using more or less the same language. I guess specifically OH and IND where they are all about busting the Unions.

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  39. Kelly Bradford says:

    To Bob:

    That is a very valid question: maybe govt shouldn’t won heating/cooling/power plants. But even if they shouldn’t, what is the rational for a no bid process for selling them?

    Also, picture this scenario: sell large cogen plant at U-Wisconsin to private party. Private party increases rates, increases profits. U-W spends more on heating/energy. Taxpayers ultimately pay the bill. Result: increase taxes or increase deficit

    • Bob Plugh says:

      >for any amount that the department determines to be in the best interest of the state.

      This is at the END of the sentence that allows them to sell the state owned powerplants.

      WHY is THIS PORTION NEVER POSTED??? Scaremongering, that is the ONLY REASON!

      • Tim says:

        The fact that they can randomly decide what the public interest is? That has been repeated several times, and your quote does not change that.

  40. farang says:

    Well come’on, let’s be fair here: you didn’t think neo-con fascists attacked and de-funded Education since Reagan (and continue to do so at breakneck speed with Obama’s tacit approval) and dumbed down the masses with Fox News & Rush Pimpaugh,and all the others, expanded the War on American Privacy and Dignity, exported manufacturing jobs (for what will soon turn and bite them in their ignorant behinds in places like China, you watch), and so many Public Servant/Private Koch suckers performing their prostitution in full view (Economic Exhibitionists, who knew?)…just so things would “continue as usual” did you?

    They KNOW they are criminals: they fully expect the masses to be herded in the direction Cass Sunstein says to. That they are being promised “protection” from justice and retribution by their masters. Hint: con men alternate between issuing ultimatums and violent threats and acting so “hurt” that you think they aren’t “your best friend….” Wisconsin, ya listening? “WALK” that asshole to prison, make America proud.

    So, let’s get real: You gonna fight, or fold? Bottom line America: fight or fold? Willing Koch suckers, or Freedom Fighters?

    If I was a citizen of Wisconsin, I’d be demanding rescinding that $117 million tax break Walker gave business upon entering office BEFORE ANY negotiations started, including his surrendering into custody for Fraud, Graft, Conspiracy to Incite Violence, etc.

    TEST CASE AMERICA: WHAT WILL YOU not STAND FOR???

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    • Bob Plugh says:

      >>>for any amount that the department determines to be in the best interest of the state.

      Again, WHY DO YOU CUT OFF THIS SECTION from that very sentence!!!!!

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  49. Union_man says:

    It is very common in large campuses to have energy plants. The plants provide the heating and cooling, at a much more economical price than purchasing those services. Sometimes these services are actually used to heat non-state owned entities (hospitals, etc.). And with proper management, it is definitely cheaper for the state to run. All the costs for operation would be basically the same, put a private company would have to charge extra for the profit. I work for a school district that used to have a heating plant, they got the wood chips for free (cost of transportation). This saved a lot of money for more than 15 years, unfortunately they didn’t keep it properly maintained and it needed major work (around a million dollars). the cost of operating it was somewhere around 50 thousand a year. They took it out, now between the 4 building they spend over 300 thousand! Not a wise move if you ask me, but they did save on labor *LOL* (that was included in 50 thousand)
    Bob Plugh
    “for any amount that the department determines to be in the best interest of the state.” could mean, because you helped me win the election, it is in the best interest of the state to sell you this power plant for a dollar, so you can continue to help me get elected, thus doing the state a great service. When stuff is put out for bid, you will get the best possible price. It may actually be a violation of federal law, depending on if any of the funds came from the federal government. Lets face it, in today’s world, I don’t believe that it is a very wise move! The reason they went that way in the first place was for control, so that they could not be held ransom to the power provider, some of you people are pretty two faced. When it comes to unions, the public sector shouldn’t have them because they charge you too much, but we can trust a private company, because he says we can. Lets face it, if it was Doyle who was proposing this, you would be going nuts (as you should be). Think for yourselves and quit following the blind, he will only lead you a stray! But don’t worry, he won’t admit he was wrong!
    Did you know that 2/3 of Wisconsin corporations pay no taxes! If I was looking for someone to blame for a lot of our mess, I think I would start right about there!

    • Union_man says:

      Oh forgot to mention, of those 2/3 that pay no taxes, a lot of them are not manufacturing jobs. I am wondering why you people aren’t going after them as much as you are public workers and public union workers. These places are making a lot more money than you, and not paying anything back into the system!

  50. Pingback: We Party Patriots » Blog Archive » The Less Discussed Part of the “Less Discussed Part of Walker’s Plan” Might Be the ‘Contractual Operation’ of Wisconsin’s Power Plants, Not Their Sale

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  53. madmilker says:

    “It is the aim of good government to stimulate production, of bad government to encourage consumption.” – Jean Baptiste Say

    If Retail makes NOTHING….and Government makes only MORE DEBT….the only thing that can have a positive effect on communities is Small Business and companies that make stuff.

    The picture of George Washington can float around a town six to eight times before leaving the community but if that dollar is spent inside of a big box store it will leave the same day that it entered.

    Big Box stores like Wal*Mart can take in 200,000 George Washington’s a day and that be a lot of “Liberty” “Pride” “Freedom” leaving town each day.

    And when one figures into the equation America has a six to one trade deficit with China which means five out of every six George Washington’s that go there will never come back unless the US Government sells bonds(debt) this is what those on Jenkins Hill and Wall Street don’t understand when it comes to local banks not having any George Washington’s to loan out in their communities.

    Why is it that people ain’t writing articles about those fifteen cargo ships that pollute as much as 760 million automobiles, T Boone Pickens owning a Texas Water District, Nestle draining the Great Lakes, the disconnect between Coca-Cola and the people of India, Wal*Mart putting less than 5% foreign in their stores in China and Warren Buffett buying a Choo Choo train a few years after Wal*Mart makes a deal on a port in Mexico.

    In 1960 U.S. goods manufacturing produced a $5 billion trade surplus – – 2006 merchandise trade had a $836 billion deficit. Today, for some reason, the world thinks the American consumer needs to support what they make….well, it doesn’t work like that even a fifth grader can figure that out.

    So-call cheaper items only breed cheaper wages and this will go on until the rich of the world carry out the manufacturing of ignorance through out the 182 or so counties that will have a chance to make something.

    I’m just an O’fart with very little book learning but from what I’ve seen over the past sixty five years in this great union of fifty states has shown me that common sense left in the year 63′ and “my sh!! don’t stink” sense as been here every since.

    Sad, those few fat farmers with penmanship of poets holding feather quill goose pens and writing the American dream has today become nothing more than a page within a history book that a bunch of asinine dipsticks are to lazy and ignorant to teach.

    Over the past 100 years the Federal Debt has gone from $2.6 billion in 1910 to over $14 trillion today….In that time there has only been one 10 year period that the debt has gone down 1920-1930.

    All done by a bunch of elephants and jack@sses acting like turnips. People today still think Clinton balance the budget but anyone knows if they think with an open mind that if the budgets of the Clinton years had been balance the debt would had not gone up.

    America is over $57 trillion in debt and it didn’t get there by people using common sense. If the American people don’t wake-up to that fact within another twenty years they will witness Lady Liberty kneeling to her knees in the Hudson and someone in Tiananmen Square holding that tablet from under her left arm celebrating what is written upon it.

    • laudyms says:

      Economists are paid the big bucks to cover up the obvious- which you’ve expressed very well. We have to find ways to be useful to each other and take care of our communities. The basic survival unit is not the individual or even the family. It takes groups working together to survive.

  54. Bubb says:

    I think it is government duty to keep things in its own place. I am sure all those who understand this agree with me.

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  57. B Happy says:

    How can we have any conversation about who is getting overpaid and overcompensated without discussing the people who really are being grossly overpaid?

    Maybe it’s because those truly overpaid people control the information in the discussions heard by the majority of the population via the Massive Mainstream (Opinion) Media outlets.

    Rome fell due to more power and wealth falling into the hands of fewer people. They quit building roads and public projects while the wealth consolidated into the control of fewer and fewer families.

  58. laudyms says:

    These greedy parasites haunt every age and manage to eventually undercut any effort at regulation. If we’d hang a few, it might cut their numbers back.

    If that sounds like hyperbole, be assured (by this former pacificist) that it is not.

  59. Pingback: Privatization At The Heart Of Divisive Battles In Wisconsin

  60. Thanks for this Great Post! So, let’s get real: You gonna fight, or fold? Bottom line America: fight or fold? Willing Koch suckers, or Freedom Fighters?

  61. Waldi Syafei says:

    Excellent post.. I’d like to see conservatives defend that little gem..

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  65. Dini says:

    i think its not a big deal to do that even if crisis still go on..

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