The Marxist in the Mirror; A Public-Union Shakedown

The Washington Times (Washington, DC), April 26, 2011 | Go to article overview

The Marxist in the Mirror; A Public-Union Shakedown


Byline: Ed Feulner, SPECIAL TO THE WASHINGTON TIMES

Raise our taxes! Can you imagine chanting such a slogan at a public rally? Neither could most Americans.

There is one notable exception, however: government-union activists. They're pretty explicit these days about their desire to see taxes go up.

If that surprises you, you may be unaware of how dramatically the face of organized labor has changed over the last few decades. There's a very good reason they've got your wallet in their sights - more and more, that's where their wages comes from.

To see why, it's vital to understand the difference between unions in the private sector (steelworkers, autoworkers, etc.) and unions in the public sector (government).

Private-sector union membership has been in steep decline. Back in 1980, one out of every five private-sector workers belonged to a union. Thirty years later, less than 7 percent do. That's fewer than one in 14. But over the same period, government-union membership has been climbing. Today, in fact, more than half of all union members (52 percent) work for the government.

So when they lobby management (i.e., elected officials) for wage hikes and other benefits, that money isn't coming out of the bank account of

some private company. It's coming from you and me. When those elected officials say, We're in the red. We have to balance our budget and we can't pay you more, government-union activists reply: Raise our taxes!

Of course, they don't just say it. Government-union leaders spend millions of dollars trying to elect politicians who are open to tax hikes. They were the top outside spenders in the last election. They put their money where their mouths are, all in the hopes of putting your money where their coffers are.

This circular arrangement may be nice and cozy for union leaders and their big-government buddies, but it's a disaster for the taxpayers they're exploiting. If taxes aren't raised to satisfy their demands, will workers strike from providing government services? They can - and they have (e. …

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