Another Battle in the War Against Working People

The Republicans who rule the roost in Pennsylvania’s state capital want to make it illegal for local, county, and state governments to withhold public employees’ union dues from their paychecks.  “Why should the public sector perform this private function?” they ask.  (In the near future, The Curmudgeon will present an example in which public officials are quite happy to expend taxpayers’ money for the private business of elected officials.)

Their real problem, of course, is that public employees tend to vote in large numbers against Republican candidates, mostly because Republican officials have no respect for working people, and those union dues that governments withhold include money that’s later spent on political activities and campaign contributions.  But the legislators are actually defending public employees, they insist, because those public employees have no voice in how their unions’ political money is used.

Other than electing the union officials who make those decisions, those public officials conveniently overlook.

Which, when you think about it, is just like how voters elect officials who then go on to make decisions about how to spend taxpayers’ money on the public’s behalf.

So much for that argument.

Deducting workers’ union dues is not how it works in the private sector, these officials bloviate, so there’s no reason the public sector should behave any differently.

But actually, it is – and these elected officials would know that if so many of them hadn’t devoted their lives to feeding off the public teat.

In fact, companies in the private sector routinely deduct their employees’ union dues.

More to the point, though, go into any large corporation and you’ll find high-level and sometimes not-so-high-level executives and members of upper management who are “invited” to contribute to their company’s political action committee.   “Invited” is a euphemism, of course, because failure to kick into the kitty, and in appropriate amounts, can be an absolute career-killer.  There’s even a term for it:  it’s referred to as “getting maced.”

And once the corporate executives make those (in)voluntary contributions?

They have no voice in how that money is spent.  Just like those poor unionized workers the elected officials are now trying so hard to protect, when you think about it.

So in the end, this is just another way for Republican elected officials to wage war against working people who don’t vote for them.

You know, working people:  their own constituents.

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