While public employees fight for their collective bargaining rights in Wisconsin, the Janie Q's of Wal-Mart illustrate what happens to those workers in the private sector who have no bargaining rights at all.
What Governor Scott Walker isn't mentioning is that less than two weeks into his term as Wisconsin's governor, he pushed through $117 million in tax breaks for business allies of the GOP. There is your "budget crisis."
As mediation meetings between the NFL and the NFLPA enter their sixth straight day, there is a growing sense of optimism that the gloom and doom surrounding these negotiations may be delayed or even averted.
If Scott Walker wins his fight in Wisconsin, it is almost certain that some of 36 other states which currently allow collective bargaining for public sector workers will try to follow suit and restrict collective bargaining for public employee unions.
The last thirty years shows conclusively that the "competitive market" -- absent collective bargaining -- simply does not assure that everyday employees share in the fruits of increased productivity or economic growth.
Organized labor needs to evolve alternatives to the traditional collective bargaining model, which no longer fits in a globalized economy, and arguably always has been problematic in the public sector.
The Wisconsin protests have never been about the money. It's about the politics, about the representation and about the duty that public officials have to treat their constituents who are taxpayers with a minimal degree of respect.