My latest column is up at the National Review Online. Since everyone claims that public sector collective bargaining is an inviolable “right,” I went back and looked at the circumstances of how the law passed in 1959 in the first place.
Nelson was always a supporter of public-employee unions — in 1946, his first job as a young attorney in Madison was working for a nascent labor organization known as AFSCME. Yet in today’s political world, such a nakedly obvious gift to a political constituency would crash Twitter. Nelson’s record of clean governing is the stuff of legend in Wisconsin — but public-sector collective bargaining clearly helped the fortunes of his Democratic party. To think he didn’t understand that is to insult the intelligence of a political legend.
As the nation endeavors to usher in an era featuring a “new tone” in politics, AFSCME’s Marty Beil thinks the old tone suits him just fine, thank you.
In December, outgoing Senate Majority Leader Russ Decker shocked his Democratic colleagues by voting against a last-minute attempt to ram through 19 public employee union contracts. Beil, the executive director of AFSCME Council 24, representing state workers, responded by calling Decker a “whore.” “Not a prostitute, a whore. W-H-O-R-E,” Beil proudly intoned, as if he were a pimply middle-schooler conquering a spelling bee word.
So Marty Beil will continue to do what he’s paid to do, but he’ll be doing it against a tidal wave of public and legislative sentiment. He may even continue to call people names.
But being a “whore” means you’re paid for your work. If Beil continues to agitate in such a juvenile manner, the Legislature would be happy to screw his members for free.
Coke has set up a website called CokeCheers, where you can go pick whether you’re rooting for the Packers or the Steelers in the Super Bowl – and if they can get 10,000 people to vote for the Pack, the Green Bay Boys and Girls Club will get $25,000. So click here to cheer on the Pack and donate to a good cause.