Victory in Wisconsin! (Also, Zombies.)





I decided as soon as I saw how close the recent judicial race was, that even if Walker-connected Judge Prosser pulled ahead (which he has) the race is still a great victory for the people of Wisconsin.

First of all, I’d like to think most of us on both sides of the issue can agree with Rachel Maddow that it’s kind of “creepy” that citizens of Wisconsin and some other states ELECT their Supreme Court justices.  This is exactly the kind of political controversy they should be shielded from, as most states do.

But that’s how it is in Wisconsin, and for that reason this judicial election became the first opportunity for impatient, angry Wisconsinites to express their fervent opposition to Governor Walker’s worker-crushing policies electorally.  A “proxy” battle, this election was called.

Well, for a virtually unknown, inexperienced, and – OK – probably weak candidate like Ms. Kloppenburger to have come THIS close to beating the well-known and respected incumbent Judge Prosser, to have jumped from 15% to 50% of the vote in such a short time, – even despite being outspent by Koch-allied forces 3 to 2 at last count – is just amazing, and an unmistakable portent of the popular wrath to come.

Wisconsin is no longer making front-page news out here, but the people’s resistance to the Koch-Walker assault on their lives has not let up one iota.  Yesterday a third anti-worker Senator qualified for recall – like the others, with WAY TOO MANY signatures.*  (The goofy astroturf threats to recall Democratic Senators haven’t borne any fruit yet.)*  Last week the 2008 nostalgia figurine Sarah Palin, in her bid to rally the anti-worker troops regain a smidgen of relevance for Herself, managed to draw as many protesters as bussed-in fans, the latter of whom strained in vain to decipher her chirpy blather over the former’s clamor.  (Chirpy blather delivered from a podium reading “I Am Koch.”)  And the Day of Judgment for Walker himself – January 2012 – draws ever more nigh.

My brother Crab (who will be blogging here soon as “Crab the Impaler”) speaks to working-class, blue-collar Wisconsinites every day as part of his job;  they tell him that thanks to this corporatist overreach the GOP is dead in that state for at least a decade to come.  And the Coffee Party is spreading all over the region with challenges to Ohio’s SB5 coming up in September, and a recall of Financial Martial Law artist Governor Snyder in Michigan.  (If we could only get a little of that spirit in Costa Mesa right now!)

But the final, most decisive sign of Victory in Wisconsin HAS to be the Zombie Walk earlier this month in Mad-Town – even the Dead of the Badger State are rising to defend the long-suffering worker.  [Best chants:  “What do we want?  BRAINS!  When do we want ’em?  BRAINS!”  And the zombie-mouthed version of “This is what democracy looks like!” at around the 5-minute mark – unforgettable.]

* UPDATE Wednesday afternoon: Damn, this is moving fast! FIVE Republican anti-worker Senators sig-qualified for Recall, and a SIXTH expected by May 2. Meanwhile, ONE Democratic Senator has been qualified.

About Vern Nelson

Greatest pianist/composer in Orange County, and official political troubadour of Anaheim and most other OC towns. Regularly makes solo performances, sometimes with his savage-jazz band The Vern Nelson Problem. Reach at, or 714-235-VERN.