The year 2012 was a very active on in Fitzwalkerstan, full of ups and downs and more than our fair share of sideways. To help appreciate some of the things we've been through, here is my take of the year, with all due apologies to the incomparable Dave Barry:
The year was barely a couple of days old when this ruggedly handsome and extremely talented writer hit the scene with a timely article in the Shepherd Express about a thing we like to call Walkergate.
The very next day, even before some of the copies of the paper had been delivered, John Doe struck. Scott Walker's right hand man and bestest friend, Tim Russell, along with Brian Pierick and Kevin Kavanaugh were arrested and charged with crimes ranging from embezzlement to child enticement.
John Doe struck again, with even greater force. Darlene Wink and Kelly Rindfleisch were arrested and charged with illegal politicking.
And sandwiched right between these two glorious events was the hand delivery of nearly one million signatures to recall Walker, Rebecca Kleefisch and a handful of state senators.
It was heady times indeed as the people were rising to reclaim their state. And if the recall didn't get Walker, John Doe would.
To try to distract that voters, Walker reiterated his promise to create 250,000 jobs, even has thousands of jobs were leaving the state.
The month was not all jubilation though. It was with heavy hear that I said goodbye to my good friend, Tom Foley, aka Illusory Tenant.
But as we were to learn, this was just the beginning of the year. And just like with Walkergate, we learned, there's more. There's always more....
February was an action packed month as things proceeded on several fronts.
Even though part of the Walkergate scandal included Walker using government resources to go campaigning, he goes and does it again. In attempt to sway voters, he promised them that he'd create 300,000 jobs and lower their taxes by 10%.
As it turned out, that was the last time Walker spent any time in the state as he started touring the country to raise funds for his recall campaign.
With Walker spending more and more time out of the office, he left his compatriots and cohorts to fend for themselves as more scandals broke, like the super-secret, he-man, money-grubbing, voter-haters club of gerrymanderers.
Walkergate kept rolling along with revelations like the famous Mystery Dumpster O'Fun. But the big game changer was when Wink decided to take a plea deal and roll all over her co-defendants and who knows who else.
Meanwhile, back at the recall, Kathleen Falk announced she was running and was immediately assailed by both sides because she dared to stand up for workers rights. There's nothing like a movement shooting itself in its own foot.
Also, the propagandist groups - like Wisconsin Distorter, McGuyver Institute, Franklin Center for Propaganda and American (Rip Out Your) Heartland were exposed for the extensions of Walker's campaign that they are.
February also brought another loss to the movement with the passing of Diane Echelberger, the Pewter Gryphon.
We also learned that Wisconsin was a big old union in its own right, and then we marched into...
March came in like a lion with the announcement that the signatures had been verified and that the recall was on. This was despite the fact that Walker brought in hired mercenaries from Texas to tamper with the recall signatures.
To make things worse for Walker, the bottom was dropping out on his economic plan and and his education "reform."
But in case, the Republicans started taking diversionary tactics, like trying to muscle through a mining bill written by the mining company. Further distraction was provided when David "Chokehold" Prosser was charged with ethics violations. Apparently assaulting another justice is frowned upon. How was he to know?
Walkergate kept alive and well and kept us all titillated with the release of the Rindfleisch transcripts. It became evident that Walker was getting nervous when he started to change his tune and when he announced that he had formed his legal defense, er, cooperation fund.
The flood of information then started to slow a little, becoming more like a rain shower in...
April brought us the "news flash" that Walker is more Nixonian that Nixon was. But on the bright side, he was setting a role model for other Republicans across the nation of what not to be like.
The recall got bogged down when it Tom Barrett usurped the movement and sharted upon the unions.
On the bright side, we knew that we weren't going to have Kathy "Oh, where did those 17,000 votes come from?" Nickolaus to kick around much longer.
We also learned that Walker was getting really nervous about Walkergate, judging by how much he was spending on cooperating.
On the bright side, yours truly got his second article published in the Shepherd Express. Even better, you, my dear, dear gentle readers, voted this here blog as Best of the Web. You like us almost as a gentle spring day in...
In May, workers and free minded people hit the phones and the doors as the recall election started reaching the crescendo.
Walker and his administration covered themselves with glory as they literally crapped on the people. And if he wasn't doing it, his hired hit men were.
The bad news kept piling up for Walker.
We learned that not only was Walker failing in his jobs promise, he was failing in his promise to create 10,000 businesses. The number of businesses actually decreased by more than 5,000 and that is counting the 45,000 "businesses" he did create in the form of propagandist front groups.
To make it worse, Walker was seen on film with the Mummy Hendricks boasting how he was going to "divide and conquer" the state.
thirteenth member of Walker's campaign/county staff to be given immunity and expansion on Walker's pay to play and bid rigging scandals.
Walker's propagandist goons tried to besmirch the whole proceeding, but the people with real credibility stood up for the DA and the judge. The real notable thing is that despite all their slander and libel, not one person has yet said that Walker is innocent.
To counter all the negativity, Walker decided to meet only with wealthy campaign donors. And from his undisclosed location in the Koch Brothers' vault, Walker issued last minute promises to create 1,000,000 jobs, wash everyone's car, cut taxes by 200%, and to find a cure for cancer.
Which leads us to the climax of the soap opera As Fitzwalkerstan Turns (Our Stomachs)...
At the beginning of June, things started to boil over.
We learned that Walker had been stonewalling the Walkergate investigation all along. On top of that, we also learned that he's been doing the same illegal politicking from the governor's office.
Then the impossible happened. Walker won and Wisconsin lost. Some way, some how, Tom Barrett was able to again snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.
The state and the nation was reeling. How the hell did we just reelect the most incompetent and the most corrupt governor in state history? Well, we didn't. The electronic voting machines did.
tired song and dance of wanting to work together and even invited legislators to the governor's mansion for a cook out. Republicans were served prime rib and the Democrats were given weenies. (At least the ones that Joel Kleefisch didn't already eat.)
Unsatisfied with managing to steal the recall for Walker, the right wing then proceeded to commit voter fraud fraud in an effort to retain control of the state senate. They had the mining company's mining bill to pass, dammit!
Meanwhile, back at the Capitol, Prosser showed his true colors by trying to blame the victim of his assault and battery. (She wouldn't stop choking herself on my hands!)
And as expected, not only did Walker renege on all of his promises, it started becoming apparent how bad things had gotten under the first year and a half of his reign of terror, most notably with the corrections system.
By the end of the month, John Doe had picked himself up, brushed himself off and revealed that there really was a leak in the Walkergate investigations - Charlie Sykes!
The end of June really made everyone shudder. Walker picked up the right wing's playbook, the Powell memo, and with a wink and a nod, said that he wasn't going to run for President. No, really.
What would happen to Fitzwalkerstan? Can the state be saved? And with Romney coming out as the Republican nominee for president, could the country?
Stay tuned to see how the story ends...