Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Asleep at the Wheel

The ever valuable Recess Supervisor has a lovely picture of Oshkosh state Assembly Rep. Carol Owens asleep on the chamber floor:

As the RS notes, it's not exactly the first time Rep. Owen has been caught "resting her eyes" on the job...

To be fair, it is a still photo and many an unsuspecting schmuck has been caught unawares in an uncompromising posture before. I did check to see if WisconsinEye had archived the late night session to see if there is some more photographic evidence of Owens nodding off, but the footage is not up yet. I'll be sure to keep a lookout for it ... not that there isn't enough testimony to demonstrate a pattern.

The way criticism of public figures in Oshkosh usually works, one is supposed to praise the person ("Oh he's such a nice person and has always been so good to my family") before one slams him ("But he just hasn't been doing his job lately," etc.) -- see the debate surrounding the now former city manager. But in Owen's case critics should get straight to the point: she's old, it's debatable whether she can physically perform the duties of her office and she has been an embarrassment to the city in recent years with clueless comments about Milwaukee's minority population and her alliance with local hate-mongering homophobe Teno Groppi (and just in case he thought no one noticed -- Look, it's Rep. Mark Gundrum at this sheetless Klan rally!).

Owens is a relic of an age a vast majority of people in Wisconsin thought we were beyond. One of the reasons she's still in office is because no one in her district thinks she's beatable. She is. Either a Republican or a (conservative) Democrat could do it. All it takes is a little hustle. When was the last time you think Owens knocked on any doors? To the best of my knowledge, that's still something you need to be awake to do ...

Owens has been so hateful during her legislative career that the deference that is given to her by newspapers across the state should end post haste. This really isn't the purview of the Northwestern, since they are not exactly to go-to source for events that occur outside Winnebago County, but the symptoms of Owens time in office should have been discussed by the Madison and Milwaukee papers long ago. If they are deferring to the NW, then they should specifically tell them so because Owens has been making Oshkosh a laughing stock for long enough.

MORE: From Team Mathias.

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