Friday, February 18, 2011

Fascinating Events in Wisconsin!

How many people really understand just what "collective bargaining rights" the Wisconsin governor's (Republican Scott Walker) proposal "strips away?" ("Strips away" seems to be the favorite media phrase for it.)

If you want to design a health care plan for public sector employees that makes economic sense (as measured by maximizing the total net value) might it be the case that you don't want to bargain over deductibles, copays, and network coverage while you are also bargaining over wages?

And doesn't bargaining over wages give sufficient leverage for the union? If other parameters of the job are set, the residual falls onto the wage, and that is what can be collectively bargained over.

Two final thoughts. In regard to the Democrat legislators leaving the State to prevent a vote from being taken, I find this pretty humorous:
The Wisconsin Constitution prohibits police from arresting legislators while they're in session.
What, are you kidding -- the WI constitution has that kind of detail? Quote is from this MSNBC story.

Second, this will be I think a watershed event. Let's see who blinks.

UPDATE: A reader has pointed out my naivety. His explanation of the constitutional prohibition against arresting legislators is sensible -- supposedly arresting your opponents was common practice in olden times. And I thought it was just another perk of elected office. Even our NH constitution provides for this: "No member of the house of representatives, or senate shall be arrested, or held to bail, on mesne process, during his going to, returning from, or attendance upon, the court."

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