Decades-long tradition...not really

So, is the fight in Madison over some long-held, deeply-cherished cornerstone of decades of public union powers?

Not according to John Fund in the WSJ:
The governor's move is in reaction to a 2009 law implemented by the then-Democratic legislature that expanded public unions' collective-bargaining rights and lifted existing limits on teacher raises.
So, Walker is actually just trying to take back union powers that they've had for a whoppin' 2 years.

On the flip side, since they've only had these powers for two years, you can't really blame the collective bargaining rules for the deep doo-doo that Wisconsin is in.

On the other flip side (we're up to three) since the unions did not have this power from 1848 through 2009, they can't really make the point that removing them would be a catastrophe and lead to working conditions where there's a guy beating on a drum while another guy walks up and down with a lash.

Update: I tried to find some contemporary coverage of Fund's claims, and I couldn't really find anything. The closest was the extension of collective bargaining to various teachers at UW--including grad students. If you read his words carefully, this might be what he is talking about, but it is not the wholesale implementation that he seems to imply.