Marginalization

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I found the fact that Scott Walker got brought up during one of our discussions on marginalization was quite interesting. I think that there are many ways that this could be brought up. Someone mentioned how there family was marginalized because they're were state workers. Well it can go both ways. I could say my family has been marginalized forever because we pay 100% of our health insurance and other things that state employees don't have to pay or pay very little for until Scott Walker came along. It's not that he wants to "hurt" those people by making them pay for more of their health care and not having collective bargaining. He wants to even the playing field for every one! Why should some people pay for all of their health care when others pay nothing. My dad had a heart attack when he was 44 years old and now he has to be on high risk insurance. He also owns his own small business and doesn't get health benefits and a retirement fund like other people like state employees. My town is mostly democratic and it was funny because most of the people that care the most and have the biggest issue with Scott Walkers plan is teachers! They think that they're being somehow "punished" or "marginalized". I don't think that's the case. My best friends mom works for the state as well as her dad and they understand what Scott Walker is trying to do. He's helping the state so why no pay 10% of your health care cost. It's not the end of the world!

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Okay that was me that brought this up and I want to make it absolutely clear that I was not saying we were "marginalized" because we were asked to pay more for health insurance. I was saying we were marginalized because the whole situation made people in my area feel like my dad was almost an enemy. They were somehow given the impression that my dad, a hard working public employee, is given government "handouts," that he doesn't have to pay taxes, that he can retire when he's 50 because his pension is supposedly so great. These are all things we were told by members of our community. Well none of that is true. He doesn't get handouts, he pays taxes like everyone else, and he certainly isn't going to be able to retire when he's 50. He doesn't feel comfortable telling people what he does in social situations because it causes tension. He's had good friends turn on him because they think he's "a lazy public employee who gets everything handed to him." And that is an actual quote from a family friend.
Now, I realize this isn't the case in every city or county in Wisconsin, but it is in mine and I was trying to point out a way in which I've experienced marginalization. I wasn't trying to spark a political debate about what's going on in Wisconsin.
But I really wanted to make it clear that I was in no way saying my family was being marginalized by being asked to pay more for healthcare, because now I feel like my words have been twisted. To be completely honest with you, we agree with what he did, but not the way in which it happened. It was the total isolation of the two sides that caused marginalization.
Please understand that I'm not trying to cause a debate here, but I really don't appreciate being put on the spot when that wasn't my point in the slightest. Maybe I wasn't clear enough when I said this in class, but hopefully it's clearer now. I do not feel marginalized because my family is paying more for healthcare. I feel marginalized because my dad was unfairly categorized into a group by my surrounding community. It really has little to do with Scott Walker's policies on their own.

While I agree with the above entry that paying for one's health care may not fall under the category of marginalization, I think it's more than fair for one to feel a sense of injustice with what's going on. Here's how I see it:
When Scott Walker came into office, Wisconsin was set to have a surplus. Walker had a special session of the legislature where he gave tax cuts to corporations. This changed the projected surplus into a deficit. To offset this deficit Walker created a budget that did two things. The first was required state workers to pay a higher percentage into their pensions. The second was taking away collective bargaining rights away from the public unions.
The problem with the second part is that removing collective bargaining rights is not a budget measure--their is no gain or loss involved with the state budget--but rather a policy measure. Walker took a complicated problem that required the apparent need for bold action and used it to achieve a longtime ideological objective, which in this case was busting unions. Public workers even agreed to the budget so long as their rights were protected, yet Walker would compromise, making it clear that the overall goal was to weaken public unions. I do believe Walker was trying to hurt them.
This isn't an issue of public verses private sector workers, although many are making it out to be just that. This is a marginalization of all workers; working and middle class, union and non-union, public and private sector, in favor of big corporations (Koch Industries) that get to enjoy massive tax cuts while average Wisconsinites suffer. I don't think that's fair at all.
This "leveling of the playing field" that the initial entry talks about is really more like a steam-rolling of everyone. "Why should some people pay for all of their health care when others pay nothing. " I think the real question is, how can it be justified that anyone has to struggle to pay for health care while our government is favoring big corporations?

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This page contains a single entry by siegx016 published on October 4, 2011 2:30 PM.

lives in transition.. was the previous entry in this blog.

Neoliberalism is the answer? (kemp & berkovitch) is the next entry in this blog.

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