A left-leaning high school classmate asked about my being "far right" in my political views and why anyone would think it is a good idea to strip workers of their collective bargaining "rights". As a former lawmaker, I had some experience and, as it happens, opinions on the subject.
Julia, The term far right is really a misnomer. It depends on what you mean by it. I am really passionate about making the most sensible laws. By sensible I mean liberal, or free. I measured every vote by whether it added freedom or removes it. I called it my "freedom litmus test".
So if you were proposing more taxes or a new program that was expensive, I would see that as creating more of a burden on taxpayers, so it was "anti-liberal".
If you proposed an anti-smoking law, even though I do not smoke, I would resist that. Who am I to tell someone he cannot smoke, or tell a restaurant OWNER what he could do inside his four walls with consenting adults?
So we find that people who consider themselves "liberal" are actually leading the charge to limit a lot of freedoms while people labeled "far right" are actually the ones typically most vocal about retaining liberty.
As for collective bargaining "rights", FDR, the most famous progressive actually said that public employee collective bargaining was unconscionable.
A public employee union is funded by taxpayers in order to extract more pay, more benefits, and less work from those same taxpayers. Voting for any union-backed candidate is like putting an embezzler in charge of your bank. He may look nice, but his goal and yours for your money are completely different. Does that make sense?
Look at California. The unions managed to put in a majority Democrats in that once solidly western Republican state. The Democrats then raise union workers' pay, slash private contracting, and do everything they can to make more union members. Those union bosses then spend even more money electing more Democrats. California is bankrupt and yet has over 4000 retirees earning over $100,000 per year in retirement.
In my fire district, Monarch, the union spends $100,000 to $200,000 on each race for a single seat. They never lose. Today, the firefighters average over six figures in pay, overtime and benefits and work just eight 24 hour shifts per month. Those hundreds of thousands of dollars they have to spend are literally my tax dollars which now are being used to pull more tax dollars from my pocket-literally. They want to raise our tax rates and even start charging extra for ambulance rides that are already paid for.
You have heard the term military industrial complex. Military people retire early and run for office or go to work for military contractors and push for more military spending. It is the same with Democrats and unions and State and Federal government. Missouri has resisted this as Republicans have held enough power and joined with conservative Dems to moderate those moves.
So in Missouri we did things like ban teacher strikes. Union-heavy Illinois allows them. My aunt lives near Chicago. Her co-worker will retire at $90,000 per year in retirement at 60 and will be up over $120,000 by 75.
As for Wisconsin, like Illinois and California, they are bankrupt after years of the public union - Democrat complex. They cannot maintain the status quo and balance the budget. Reducing the nonsensical public employee collective bargaining rights is a move to break up the complex that created the problem.
Wisconsin voters knew that their liberal Dems had bankrupted the state and so they took a chance on Repubs who would restore fiscal sanity. The people really asked for this.
Anyone wishing to learn more about the issue of Right To Work laws is welcome to attend a presentation by Mark Mix, President, National Right To Work Legal Foundation
Friday, March 11th, 2011
10:30 A.M. – VIP Reception
11:00A.M. - Program
The Columns Banquet Center
711 Veterans Memorial Parkway
St. Charles, MO 63303
Pre-registration required: email@example.com
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