I wonder if Ed Thompson agrees with what Grover Norquist has to say about the hardworking farmers in Thompson’s area. Namely, that they’re ‘welfare bums.’Thompson was in Eau Claire touting his Wealthcare tax pledge to Norquist again today. Since Norquist flew in from his home in DC to put Thompson’s pledge to the wealthy on the record, I’m just wondering what Thompson thinks about Norquist going on the record to the far-right magazine Human Events as saying:
“Every time you cut programs, you take away a person who has a vested interest in high taxes and you put him on the tax rolls and make him a taxpayer. A farmer on subsidies is part welfare bum, whereas a free-market farmer is a small businessman with a gun.”
Does Thompson think the same as Norquist about the 300,000-plus individuals in Wisconsin that work in agriculture, with farmers making on average a meager $10 an hour doing some of the most labor intensive work to feed approximately 155 people per farmer? Does Thompson also think they are just ‘welfare bums’?
I also wonder if Thompson knows that of the 70,000 family-owned farms in Wisconsin, about 9,000 can be found in 31st Senate District. Does he too think these farm operators in his area are just ‘welfare bums’?
Norquist’s incendiary ideas, like the one about farmers, are nothing new. His involvement in state politics boils down to something else he once said: ‘We are trying to change the tones in the state capitals – and turn them toward bitter nastiness and partisanship.’ Nice.
The tax pledge to the wealthy that Thompson is all too proud to take part in is just part of that agenda, and the hardworking folks in his area, like the thousands of farmers Norquist calls ‘welfare bums,’ deserve to know it.