Mob rule in America

The Founding Fathers eschewed the word “democracy,” which they defined as mob rule. Maybe they knew what they were talking about. As the below editorial in the March 13 Washington Examiner shows, today’s Democratic Party has become, literally, the party of mob rule. However, I must again point out that the “mob” in this case is not the oppressed, but the oppressor, the privileged public unions who in league with the Democrats have been massively expropriating the wealth of Wisconsin’s taxpayers; and now that the taxpayers are seizing back control of their money, the public union members and Democrats have resorted to mob actions, intimidating behavior, and death threats.

Union mobocracy drowns out democracy in Wisconsin

Democracy could be found in Wisconsin this past week, but not among the screaming protesters running wild throughout the Wisconsin capitol. While Wisconsin’s elected representatives—minus 14 Democratic state senators who fled the state—were working hard on the job the people sent them to do, thousands of screaming protesters provided America with a preview of the union mobocracy coming soon to a legislature, city council or school board near you. State, county and city governments across the country might well find themselves facing the same confrontational tactics that caused havoc in Wisconsin. The reason is that public employee unions have used collective bargaining to extract generous salaries, pensions and other benefits from taxpayers who can no longer afford to pay for them. The unfunded liabilities for public employee pensions and health care benefits are estimated at $3 trillion, according to Orin S. Kramer, chairman of New Jersey’s State Investment Council. Voters are rebelling against public employee union demands that these inordinately lavish benefits be preserved by raising taxes, again, on the productive people in the economy, most of whom have far less lucrative benefits, if any at all. In Wisconsin, the projected deficit was $3.6 billion just for the next two years. That’s why last November voters there elected Gov. Scott Walker and new Republican majorities in the state legislature. When Walker unveiled his proposed budget cuts and reforms last month, the public employee unions initially demanded higher taxes on “the rich” instead.

When Walker refused to raise taxes, government labor leaders agreed to pay a little more toward their benefits, but they also shifted the debate to the governor’s proposed reforms in the collective bargaining process that enabled the unions to expect overly generous benefits. Union leaders—who receive an estimated $100 million annually in compulsory membership dues that are paid with tax dollars—were especially aghast that Walker proposed making union membership and dues an elective rather than a required paycheck deduction. That’s when the protests moved away from fervent political speech and toward the kinds of systematic confrontation and violence reminiscent of the Students for a Democratic Society-inspired campus demonstrations of the 1960s.

Things reached a fever pitch as the Wisconsin legislature approved Walker’s collective bargaining reforms. Republican legislators were often surrounded and threatened by cursing demonstrators; protesters repeatedly disrupted the legislative process; and chanting, screaming, horn-blowing crowds took over the rotunda and other parts of the capitol. Outside agitators were shipped into the state by President Obama’s Organizing for America, the SEIU and other national unions, and the organization formerly known as ACORN. As events reached a crescendo, demonstrators broke past security police, breaking windows and forcing doors open in mob actions clearly intended to bring Wisconsin government to a stop and to nullify the results of last November’s elections. Worst of all, many credible death threats were received by Republican legislators and are now being investigated by Wisconsin law enforcement authorities. Union mobocracy is what we get with gangster government, whether it’s practiced in Washington, D.C., a state capital, or the county where you live.

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Peter G. writes:

It’s amazing to me the benefits government workers in the U.S. at the local level have garnered. Here,, in Canada, I work in the broader public sector. For pension and other benefits, we pay 50 percent and 20 percent in contributions. It’s similar at other levels of government here. The only workers here who don’t are GM labour union members where the company covers the cost of everything. How ironic.

Our bargaining process is highly adversarial. I get the impression that in America today they’re all on the same team.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at March 14, 2011 11:32 AM | Send

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