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Girl doing math on chalkboard
I am not a mathematician...but, I can do long division.
Wisconsin has a surplus of between $300 and $350 million, or so the GOP says. Now, math has never been their strong suit—who can forget the $7.5 million damage estimate they came up with shortly after the Wisconsin Uprising protests that turned out to be around $270,000—so I am taking this news with just a grain of salt.

What Scott Walker and his "fiscally responsible" drones want to do as a result is give Wisconsinites that money back (keep in mind—math is not a strong point for this bunch). In order to give that money back they want to reduce tax rates (I am going to assume this impacts withholding amounts as there is no specific plan yet) so that on average Wisconsin taxpayers save about $200 a year.

Now, I am not great at math either (there is a reason I am a writer); however, I did manage to take and pass college algebra so I think I can do some simple math. The average person in Wisconsin gets paid biweekly. So we take $200 and divide by 26 pay periods. Which puts us at a tax cut of a whopping $7.69 a pay period.

$7.69 a pay period ... you have got to be kidding me. Scott Walker and his GOP allies in the Assembly and Senate tore this state apart to fix a fictitious budget problem by passing the most divisive state legislation I have ever seen in my lifetime so that they could hand out a tax cut the size of my biweekly Diet Pepsi budget? You have got to be kidding me! Hundreds, possibly thousands of teachers have left the profession due to pay cuts. Valued public servants have retired early, gone back to school, or on to other careers so that Scott Walker could give us a $7.69 tax cut? Families were torn apart, friendships destroyed, and there is a general sense of hostility towards people in my once friendly Wisconsin ... this was worth the cost of one lunch per pay period at Panera Bread?

The Wisconsin GOP can take this tax cut and shove it where the sun don't shine. Here are some better ideas for the $300-350 million "surplus." Pass legislation repealing Act 10 (that will actually save the state some money because they won't have to fight it in court). Invest in education and I am not just talking teacher pay here, fix our school infrastructure. Pay raises for all public servants to replace the money the GOP took from them when Act 10 passed. Build a train from Milwaukee to Madison and then on to the Twin Cities. These items will all put money back into the states economy ... and maybe will move us up from 42nd in the nation for job creation.

While we are at it, I would be happy to have the state pick up the tab for a one way trip to Libertarian paradise (Somalia) for these jokers.

Originally posted to Daily Kos Labor on Wed Jan 23, 2013 at 04:00 PM PST.

Also republished by Democracy Addicts, Badger State Progressive, and Madison Kossacks.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (11+ / 0-)

    "Republicans only care about the rich" - My late Father (-8.25, -7.85)

    by Mark E Andersen on Wed Jan 23, 2013 at 04:00:10 PM PST

  •  $7.69 for us... (10+ / 0-)

    but how many millions for Koch and the other cronies.  

    Our beloved Wisconsin is fast fading.  The dream that was the Wisconsin Idea is a distant memory.  We are are on the pathway to Gault's Gulch.  

    I am a teacher in Wisconsin.  So is my wife.  We are both National Board Certified teachers, have 3 Master's degrees between us and a combined 45 years in the classroom.  If we could somehow extricate ourselves from this we would do so.  

    In the district I work in roughly 20% of the teachers retired last year.  The average salary dropped over $4000 plus the teachers all saw a pay cut of more than 6% due to Act 10.  Younger teachers are totally frustrated and see no future and they are right.  When will we see a drop in teacher enrollment like has happened in California?

    Wisconsin, Forward!

    by astroguy on Wed Jan 23, 2013 at 04:23:47 PM PST

    •  Many, many millions. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      blueyedace2, 3goldens, nomandates

      None of which they need.

      "We the People of the United States...." -U.S. Constitution

      by elwior on Wed Jan 23, 2013 at 04:44:27 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  ditto this (5+ / 0-)

      We saw much the same thing here in NE wi...many more retirements than usual, drops in all compensation and large increases in health ins. co-pays, etc. as they had planned.
      Now virtually no one with any experience or education beyond college is hired (because they're at rock-bottom salary) and special ed, my husband's field, is in total turmoil at many schools.
      We warned about these things but state newspapers just published teacher salaries BY NAME and letters to the editor predictably are squawking about "over-paid" teaching professionals. These fissures are probably permanent.
      As for enrollment in education programs, I thought I had heard that there was a drop already??
      Damn. We're putting our house on the market this summer. Never thought we'd leave Wisconsin, it's going to kill us but staying is unthinkable.

  •  Don't be silly (4+ / 0-)

    It won't be $200 per person, it'll be $300 million for the richest 1% and nothing for anyone else.

    Republican threats amount to destroying the present if we don't allow them to destroy the future too. -MinistryOfTruth, 1/1/2013

    by sleipner on Wed Jan 23, 2013 at 04:44:49 PM PST

  •  Pence in IN wants to cut taxes 10% while at the (5+ / 0-)

    same time he "said" he wants more money for education.  Probably means more money for the voucher program than for real public education, but we'll see.

    "Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity." --M. L. King "You can't fix stupid" --Ron White -6.00, -5.18

    by zenbassoon on Wed Jan 23, 2013 at 04:50:33 PM PST

  •  My sentiments exactly: (6+ / 0-)
    The Wisconsin GOP can take this tax cut and shove it where the sun don't shine.
    My husband, a retired teacher, is looking at a 13% cut in his annuity beginning on May 1 of this year.  Walker's WI Economic Development Corp lost track of $12,000,000 in funds but he can now throw $200 at us as a "bonus" for putting up with his sh**?!  Two words to Walker:  Bite me!

    "A voice is heard in Ramah, weeping and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children and refusing to be comforted, because they are no more." - from the prophet Jeremiah

    by 3goldens on Wed Jan 23, 2013 at 04:54:47 PM PST

  •  $200/yr (6+ / 0-)

    will be more than offset by the increase in motor vehicle registrations fees (up to several hundred dollars/car) and even higher gas tax, both proposed recently.  Makes lots of sense, if you are Gov. Dead Eyes....

    Wisconsin: It's war, you know. We didn't start it, but we'll keep fighting in it until we win

    by isewquilts2 on Wed Jan 23, 2013 at 05:20:33 PM PST

    •  How high will WI's gax tax be compared to IL... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      nomandates, 3goldens

      ...if Walker and his allies raise the gasoline tax in WI? If it would be cheaper for Wisconsinites who live near the IL/WI border to buy gas in Illinois than it would be in Wisconsin, I could see Wisconsin actually have a net loss of revenue from gas taxes despite a hike in the gas tax rate.

      Friend of the Wisconsin Uprising from East Central Illinois! IL-15

      by DownstateDemocrat on Wed Jan 23, 2013 at 05:39:44 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Seems it's higher on the IL side (0+ / 0-)

        At least looking at's maps.

        Might make a difference for people who regularly commute across the border, but at e.g. 40mpg with a 15 gallon tank and ~$3/gal gas, you have to save about $3/gal / ( 15 gallons * 40 miles/gallon )  ~ $0.005/gal per mile that you go out of your way to take advantage of it (more if you factor in depreciation, wear and tear, insurance).

        Kenosha-Waukegan is about 15 miles so for a monopurpose round-trip to be worthwhile the per-gallon price difference would have to be at least $0.15 - which is roughly what it is.

        So while a modest WI gas tax hike won't get Wisconsinites flooding over the border, it could well dissuade Illinoisans currently border-crossing for gas from continuing to do that.

        Fake candidates nominated by the GOP for the recalls: 6 out of 7. Fake signatures on the recall petitions: 4 out of 1,860,283.

        by GeoffT on Wed Jan 23, 2013 at 10:06:17 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Go west young man! (6+ / 0-)

    We feel sorry for you guys in Wisconsin over here in Minnesota.  In fact, seeing what happened to Wisconsin after the 2010 teabagger revolution is what scared us Minnesotans into going all out to take back the state legislature here.  Even normally apathetic non-political types looked over and said "Holy shit!  Look what those assholes are doing to Wisconsin!" and voted for the good guys.  

    We'll make room for any good dems who want out.  In fact, please move into Bachmann's district--she's hanging on by a thread and--just imagine--YOU could be the guy responsible for ousting her!  

    Political compass: -8.75 / -4.72

    by Mark Mywurtz on Wed Jan 23, 2013 at 05:53:53 PM PST

  •  Walker hasn’t said who is getting the tax cut (4+ / 0-)

    I’m guessing anyone who makes under $25,000 will be out of luck.

    "We are slow to realize that democracy is a life; and involves continual struggle." ~ "Fighting Bob" - Robert M. LaFollette Sr.

    by Sand Hill Crane on Wed Jan 23, 2013 at 08:11:01 PM PST

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