I love Wisconsin politics.
Glenn Grothman, the Republican Wisconsin State Senator from West Bend just slipped on the ice, stepped into a puddle, and gave Waxing America a gift that will keep on giving for years to come.
Grothman, critical of city of Madison plowing efforts this month, suggested that there were external consequences as a result of the limited snow removal effort December 8th and 9th:
Saying Madison officials are endangering citizens' access to their state government and university, Grothman said Tuesday he's drafting a bill that would strip the city's ability to set policies for salting and plowing its main roads and give that authority to the state Department of Transportation...
The Senator must be reading Waxing America, where for years we continue to hammer home two progressive points:
- There is a larger societal benefit when government spends taxpayers dollars effectively on development and maintenance of public infrastructure and human capacity.
- The evaluation of any program must go beyond the silo that represents its budget. Funding public transit, is a 'loser' but it saves a considerable amount of money by avoiding additional road construction and maintenance.
It is our fervent hope that after two decades of Republican control and intimidation of most of Wisconsin government, Grothman and his colleagues learned something.
Next time they wail about taxation and government spending, these legislators should look at not just the costs, but also the benefits of public programs. Senator, this applies to more than snow removal, it applies to:
- public education
- environmental legislation that protects the air, land , and water in Wisconsin
- investment in cultural activities
- water and sewage systems
- sanitation and recycling systems
- and a myriad of other governmental functions
Senator, welcome to the real world and remember, Waxing America is committed to:
A candid examination of right-wing politics and the Democrats who play along and the horrid liberal policies designed to assuage the moderates but end up irritating everyone. And other stuff.
First, it is true that Madison uses about 150 pounds of salt per lane mile where the rest of the state averages 300 pounds. Keep in mind that for forty years Madison effectively used 200 pounds. There is no reason to return to 300 pounds; there is a happy medium.
Secondly, salt application was only a small part of the problem. The most significant reasons for the failure was the lack of staff and equipment.
Glenn Grothman should have the good manners to follow Ed Garvey's blog, FightingBob.com, "Is this a private fight, or can anyone join?"
Next time Grothman enters the fray uninvited, he should come armed for the battle.
The hypocrisy of Grothman calling for state interference in local government is not worthy of comment.