pecunium: (Pixel Stained)
The Republican Party would have you think Unions are nothing but thugs, robbing everyone by using the tactics of gangsters to force business owners to pay exhorbitant salaries and benefits to shiftless employees they aren't allowed to fire.

(1)[Sarah Palin] told Fox News' Sean Hannity union bosses are "acting like thugs" and it is their responsibility to "turn down the rhetoric and start getting truth out there so that nobody gets hurt." (CNN)

(2) ...what constitutes a threat of violence in the age of Obama is now to be determined by the application of a complicated set of bureaucratic criteria, which inevitably will require massive administrative litigation before a decision is rendered. Which is another way of inviting union thugs to have at it without fear of consequences anytime soon. (Washington Examiner, Editorial)

(3) Once again, union thuggery is on the march. In an effort to expand its influence and enlarge its coffers, the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) has launched a campaign on university campuses across the nation to unionize the workers of Sodexo food services. (Daily Caller)

(4) This Friday at 10pm, Fox News will broadcast my heated argument with NYC Transit Worker’s Union President John Samuelsen. It’s part of my special, “The Battle for the Future.”

Samuelsen, of course, argues that its ridiculous for me to say that “union thugs are bankrupting America.”
(Fox)

Fox News has been running footage they claim shows union "thuggery", even though the Wisconsin State Senator they said was being threatened says no such thing happened, and even after he said it on their network.

Fox & Friends host Brian Kilmeade saw a “violent” “angry mob,” while fellow Fox & Friends host Steve Doocy found the footage “absolutely scary.” Fox host Sean Hannity said while watching the “frightening” video that he was “concerned for this guy’s safety.” And contributor Michelle Malkin agreed, viewing the video as proof that “the rule of law has been supplanted by the rule of the mob.” (Think Progress)


It's not that I don't believe there aren't acts of violence during strikes and protests. It's that the idea of an organised campaign to terrorise anyone who disagrees with unions is ludicrous. Given the amount of money the business interests who want to bust the unions have, and the power of subpoena, it's impossible to believe the, "vast conspiracy" being bruited could go on for decades without coming out in court.

What about the other side? The people who support civility, the one's complaining of the "violence" of the union thugs.

Governor Walker told the Koch brothers (yes, I know it wasn't them, but he didn't), that there had been consideration of staging things which would make the protesters look violent, but they had been set aside. Not because they were wrong, but because it might have worked in reverse. That a sense the protests were likely to turn violent might cause his supporters to tell him to cave in, to avoid violence.

An official in Indiana had so such compunction. He responded to a tweet from Mother Jones Magazine, about the capitol building in Wisconsin being cleared with the quip, "use live ammunition."

On Saturday night, when Mother Jones staffers tweeted a report that riot police might soon sweep demonstrators out of the Wisconsin capitol building—something that didn't end up happening—one Twitter user sent out a chilling public response: "Use live ammunition."

From my own Twitter account, I confronted the user, JCCentCom. He tweeted back that the demonstrators were "political enemies" and "thugs" who were "physically threatening legally elected officials." In response to such behavior, he said, "You're damned right I advocate deadly force." He later called me a "typical leftist," adding, "liberals hate police."


Who was it?

Jeff Cox, now former deputy attorney general for Indiana

Another Indiana state attorney, Carlos Lam, encouraged Walker to stage an attack on himself.

“If you could employ an associate who pretends to be sympathetic to the unions’ cause to physically attack you (or even use a firearm against you), you could discredit the unions,” the email said.

“Currently, the media is painting the union protest as a democratic uprising and failing to mention the role of the DNC and umbrella union organizations in the protest. Employing a false flag operation would assist in undercutting any support that the media may be creating in favor of the unions. God bless, Carlos F. Lam.”

Lam made a point of his being actively involved in GOP politics in Indiana for 18 years. I wish, I dearly wish, I didn't think him something approaching typical. This isn't the "we beat them with our ideas, so they have to malign us" that Limbaugh says is the way of the "Conservative". This is an outright appeal to demagoguing the mob. Of staging an event, and then blaming the other side for it, so that one can get one's way.

Wisconsin is, thankfully, no Indiana. The Governor there can't do what Mitch Daniels did in 2005 and just invalidate the public sector unions. Why that's a bad idea will be the subject of my next post.

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