By SUSAN STAMPER BROWN – Syndicated Columnist
Name-calling is the coward’s way to avoid intelligent discourse. Liberals are notorious for responding to just about anything or anyone with whom they disagree using ad hominem rebuttals to discredit their opponents. Rather than exercising brain cells to engage in scholarly debate, most liberals will leapfrog over the subject at hand and conjure-up a baseless and unrelated charge that makes about as much sense as calling Bill Maher a patriot.
If you are a pro-capitalist, you are a fascist. If you are a Christian, you are an extremist. If you are a Mormon, you are a polygamist. If you reject President Obama’s liberal policies, you are a racist. And, if you are Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin, you are a liar.
Liberals are so busy trying to get their way they fail to see the yearning for fiscal integrity rumbling across the highways and byways of this great country. They have no idea this real and present dissatisfaction is non-partisan in nature. In this unstable economy, many Americans have lost their appetites for labor unions and the ginormous government budgets they inspire.
Liberals would love to blame this dissatisfaction on those right-wing nut jobs, but they cannot. A good example is what happened in South Florida in March 2011 when Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Alvarez, a Republican, was shown the door for doing for doing the opposite of what Walker is attempting to do in Wisconsin. Alvarez raised property taxes by 13 percent to fund public-sector union expenses.
In an attempt to discredit him, liberals label Walker as "too extreme." I partially agree with them; Walker is extremely effective. Wisconsin was drowning in debt until the governor’s fiscally conservative measures erased Wisconsin’s $3.6 billion deficit. Rather than adopting the Democratic Party’s "cure-all" prescription of raising taxes, Walker lowered them, signing a property tax freeze and lowering school property taxes. Wisconsin is expected to have a budget surplus by 2013.
Governor Walker made tough decisions during tough economic times. Walker’s proposal allowing union participation to be voluntary and requiring union workers to contribute to their generous benefit plans sent Wisconsin state senate Democrats reeling – literally. Once they realized Walker wasn’t going to back down, they absconded to a neighboring state in a childish display of political theatrics.
Once it was enacted, the bill Obama once described as "an assault on unions," became a pathway to independence. Wisconsin schools and local governments were given the freedom to live within their means when they were granted the ability to hire, fire and compensate based upon performance. The nonpartisan group, Wisconsin Taxpayer’s Alliance, reported that the savings from employee benefits "allowed districts to reduce costs" allowing districts like the Kaukauna school district to control their own destiny and convert a $400,000 deficit into a $1.5 million surplus.
Walker’s success in Wisconsin is a threat to labor unions, Progressives and the Democratic Party. According to the New York Post, New York unions are sending resources "to oust the union-busting Walker on June 5 and stop the anti-union movement from spreading to other states."
For political zealots, truth is a wonderful thing to twist, spin and slant – especially if it means discrediting a sitting governor prior to his recall election. Why debate an issue when you can call your opponent a liar? To no surprise, Walker has been accused of misrepresenting the truth over a variety of issues for the actions he’s taken to regain fiscal stability. Nevertheless, the best defense for Walker is the truth, which has manifested itself in Wisconsin’s economic recovery.
A win for Walker will be a win for the rest of us because his policies could serve as an antidote to the economic contagion spreading across this country. No matter who wins in Wisconsin on June 5th, or in Washington this November, our economy will not improve without making tough choices. Either way, the job requires a strong leader and skillful surgeon, and Governor Scott Walker has proven he is up to the task.
Susan Stamper Brown is an opinion page columnist, motivational speaker and military advocate who writes about politics, the military, the economy and culture. Email Susan at [email protected] or her website at susanstamperbrown.com.