The New York Times will never forgive conservative Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker for taming his state's public unions and then surviving the vengeance of a union-funded recall election. It found another line of attack in Thursday’s Arts section: Book critic Jennifer Szalai’s laudatory look at The Fall of Wisconsin: The Conservative Conquest of a Progressive Bastion and the Future of American Politics by liberal author Dan Kaufman. Szalai idn’t mention that Kaufman, who has also contributed to the far-left Nation magazine, has written several passionate encomiums to Wisconsin unions for the paper.
More proof arrived on Sunday that the New York Times will never forgive conservative Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker for successfully taming his state's public unions and then surviving an expensive, union-funded recall election. Contributing “writer and musician” Dan Kaufman: “The Destruction of Progressive Wisconsin.” The text box: “Scott Walker has turned his state into a laboratory for the evisceration of labor.”
The New York Times magazine launched another emotional attack on Wisconsin's Republican (and presidential hopeful) Gov. Scott Walker, whom the paper cannot forgive for successfully taming his state's public unions and then surviving an expensive, union-funded recall election. Contributor Dan Kaufman's romanticized, pro-union 5,700-word cover story was advertised as "Labor's Last Stand -- Scott Walker and the dismantling of American unions." A pull quote from a union official captures the tone: "Wisconsin has become a kind of laboratory for oligarchs to implement their political and economic agenda."
The latest Times Sunday Magazine featured a 5,000-word story keyed to the Wisconsin recall election pitting Republican Gov. Scott Walker against Milwaukee mayor Tom Barrett, who Walker beat in the actual election in 2010. Contributor Dan Kaufman proposed to explain how Wisconsin politics got so rancorous: "Land of Cheese and Rancor – How did Wisconsin get to be the most politically divisive place in America?"
Yet he left out a lot, including the nasty tactics against Republican Gov. Scott Walker, who was compared to Hitler by the left-wing union protesters who took to the state capitol, after Walker moved to take away the collective bargaining rights of public-sector employees. Kaufman shied away from actual details about the union-instigated Walker recall election, like its $18 million price tag and the fact that Walker has a substantial lead in most polls. Instead he focused on tangential stories supposedly representative of Republican corruption and the decline of civility in the state. He ended with a lesson in Times-worthy political decorum, as one Republican state senator regains his civility (i.e., votes with the Democrats).