by the Left Coast Rebel
Isn't it amazing to see the same guy who has constantly railed against the banksters, business and Wall Street, standing 100% behind groups across the nation that fleece local, state and federal taxpayers on a 1000x magnified scale? Yes, I'm talking about America's unions and it makes me think something of our Leader:
You can take the community organizer out of the community, but you can't take the community
organization agitation out of the community organizer.
The spread-the-wealth cavalry has arrived in Madison and Obama and co. sent 'em.
President Obama thrust himself and his political operation this week into Wisconsin's broiling budget battle, mobilizing opposition Thursday to a Republican bill that would curb public-worker benefits while planning similar action in other state capitals.
Obama accused Scott Walker, the state's new Republican governor, of unleashing an "assault" on unions in pushing emergency legislation that would nullify collective-bargaining agreements that affect most public employees, including teachers.
The president's political machine worked in close coordination Thursday with state and national union officials to mobilize thousands of protesters to gather in Madison and to plan similar demonstrations in other state capitals....
By the end of the day, Democratic Party officials were working to organize additional demonstrations in Ohio and Indiana, where an effort is underway to trim benefits for public workers. Some union activists predicted similar protests in Missouri, New Jersey and Pennsylvania....
The White House political operation, Organizing for America, got involved Monday, after Democratic National Committee Chairman Timothy M. Kaine, a former Virginia governor, spoke to union leaders in Madison, a party official said.
The group made phone calls, distributed messages via Twitter and Facebook, and sent e-mails to its state and national lists to try to build crowds for rallies Wednesday and Thursday, a party official said.
Need a briefing on the basics of this story? David Boaz at Cato has a great summation of the goings-on in Madison, Wisconsin, (emphasis mine):
Newly elected Wisconsin governor Scott Walker has introduced what he calls a "budget repair" plan that would, among other things, require state employees to pay about 5.8% toward their pension (about the private sector national average) and about 12% of their healthcare benefits (about half the private sector national average) and restrict the collective bargaining powers of government-employee unions. In response, as many as 25,000 state workers and their supporters have been protesting in and around the state Capitol.Wow, that sure sounds revolutionary, doesn't it? God forbid that state employees in Wisconsin pay 5% toward their pensions and half the national average toward their health care benefits! Talk about greed and selfishness, to think that the unions would not being willing to "pay their fair share" and do their part for the "common good" as our nation suffers from the worst downturn since the Great Depression.
Professor William Jacobson calls it correctly, "Obama acted stupidly in picking sides against taxpayers." I think that Americans are not in the mood to entertain union-thug demands and as the nation wakes from a deep, pre-bankruptcy slumber, the fury directed toward nefarious, taxpayer-fleecing public unions will be swift and just.
America stands by Governor Scott Walker of Wisconsin and the good people of the Badger State that have drawn a line in the sand.
Discussion: Memeorandum, here, here, here. More at Google Trends.
Updated: Matt Welch at Reason:
“Just think–there once was a time (for more than a century, actually), when the president of the United States thought it too imperious to deliver the State of the Union via a speech to a joint session of Congress, since that would smack of telling a co-equal branch of government what to do. Now we have a president not just taking rhetorical sides in a state issue, but actively mobilizing his political organization to affect the outcome(s), even though (to my knowledge) nothing that Gov. Walker or any other belated statehouse cost-cutter is doing has a damned thing to do with federal law. . . . We are witnessing the logical conclusion of the Democratic Party’s philosophy, and it is this: Your tax dollars exist to make public sector unions happy.”