May 23 2014
Ever heard of the Wisconsin Playbook? Ever wondered what the plan is behind Tim Hudak’s cutting of 100,000 public service jobs, reducing the taxes on corporations and attacking teachers and education funding? Well, the connection is that they result in parent fatigue with lower quality schools, teachers stripped of wages and benefits, busted unions and new jobs for private school employees. Think of the Harris Common Sense Revolution but on steroids.
Some background. In the years leading up to 2011, the Republican-dominated government of Wisconsin gave out, in Ontario terms, about $1.6 billion in tax cuts and absorbed the cost in reducing funding of transportation infrastructure. After giving another equivalent $120 million to business, the state governor decided that to pay for the accumulated transportation liability, the public service needed to lose its collective bargaining rights, that especially teachers were to have their wages frozen, that unions could not collect dues from pay cheques, and that police were exempted.