Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

Politics Friday

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* What is actually being proposed in Wisconsin? Succinct rundown from Ezra Klein.

The best way to understand Walker’s proposal is as a multi-part attack on the state’s labor unions. In part one, their ability to bargain benefits for their members is reduced. In part two, their ability to collect dues, and thus spend money organizing members or lobbying the legislature, is undercut. And in part three, workers have to vote the union back into existence every single year. Put it all together and it looks like this: Wisconsin’s unions can’t deliver value to their members, they’re deprived of the resources to change the rules so they can start delivering value to their members again, and because of that, their members eventually give in to employer pressure and shut the union down in one of the annual certification elections.

You may think Walker’s proposal is a good idea or a bad idea. But that’s what it does. And it’s telling that he’s exempting the unions that supported him and is trying to obscure his plan’s specifics behind misleading language about what unions can still bargain for and misleading rhetoric about the state’s budget.

* Fox Falsely Blames Public Unions For WI Budget Shortfall. I’m certain they’ll correct the record now that the error has been brought to their attention.

* The state police are in fact after Wisconsin’s missing Democratic lawmakers.

* Wisconsin Assembly Minority Leader Peter Barca: “The will of the people shall be the law of the land and we’re going to fight ’til the bitter end.”

* How do you troll an entire nation? Republican lawmaker wants to eliminate funding for Obama’s Teleprompter. For the lulz, I guess.

* And your unhappy buzzword of the day: climate commitment.

This paper shows that global energetics require an immediate and significant warming following the cessation of emissions as aerosols are quickly washed from the atmosphere, and the large uncertainty in current aerosol radiative forcing implies a large uncertainty in the climate commitment. Fundamental constraints preclude Earth returning to pre-industrial temperatures for the indefinite future. These same constraints mean that observations are currently unable to eliminate the possibility that we are already beyond the point where the ultimate warming will exceed dangerous levels.

Enjoy the future.

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