Walker and his lackies want to privatize the Univ. of Wis. system (the whole state actually) … selling off the buildings via no-bid sales to co-conspirators… later on the new landlords will perhaps have conditions they will want to apply… from Chas. Pierce at Esquire…
By Charles P. Pierce
We haven’t looked in recently on the activities of Scott Walker, the twice-elected goggle-eyed homunculus hired by Koch Industries to manage their midwest subsidiary formerly known as the state of Wisconsin. It seems that he and his pet legislature has decided to put what’s left of the state’s public patrimony out on card tables in the driveway to see who pulls up the old minivan to haul it away.
Under the governor’s plan, the state also could negotiate sales with individual buyers without going through a public bidding process. Any sales would have to go through a “competitive and transparent process,” though that process is not defined and includes no explanation of how negotiations with a single buyer could be competitive.
What could possibly go wrong there? And if there really is an explanation for how negotiations with a single buyer can be competitive that does not include the phrase, “schizophrenic episode,” I’d like to hear it.
The plan has generated fierce opposition from supporters of the University of Wisconsin System, who say allowing the sale of UW buildings without the approval of the Board of Regents could be detrimental, especially if the buildings were paid for with the help of student fees or private donations. Currently, the regents have a say in the management of all UW buildings. “I think it’s foolish, mindless and will have a very chilling effect on fundraising,” said Milwaukee businessman Sheldon Lubar, who donated millions of dollars to help build academic buildings at UW-Madison and UW-Milwaukee, and served on the UW System Board of Regents from 1991 to 1998. Lubar said it never occurred to him that campus buildings he supported financially could ever be sold to a third party. “I really don’t think (Walker) thought this through and understands the negative impact this would have on the university,” Lubar said. Student leaders worry that student unions, such as the landmark Memorial Union at UW-Madison, could be sold and no longer controlled by the university. Student unions, built with student fees, are central to student life, as are residence halls that also potentially could be sold under the governor’s proposal, said Matt Guidry, communications director for United Council of UW Students. “Legislators have told us that selling these buildings isn’t their intent,” Guidry said. “We believe that’s their intent today, but the next person down the road may feel differently.”
Go to sleep in your dorm. Wake up in a Taco Bell. Sounds like a plan.
Even some of the Republicans in the pet legislature seem to think this plan is dangerously ill-conceived. Oh, and the $8 billion debt that this bill is supposed to address? That is not exactly hard to explain, either. But, by all means, let’s give the man a chance to sell off the state’s prisons and its university dormitories.
And he’s running for president.
Do not sleep on this man. There is nothing he thinks is beyond his ambition.
Read more: Daily Politics Blog – Charles P. Pierce – Political Blogging – Esquire
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