Yesterday, as in states around the country, another union protest took place. This time, the public-sector union members crowded around and chanted in Annapolis, Maryland—a state that has no chance of reforming the monopoly that public-sector unions have on its government. In attendance were up to 15,000 union activists, according to an AFSCME spokesman who helped organize the protest.
Among the speakers at the rally was AFL-CIO top boss Richard Trumka, who hit the highlights of his usual class-warfare stump speech:
“Madison is just the beginning, this right here is only the beginning, you ain’t seen nothing yet,” said Trumka before an energized and cheering crowd. “Scapegoating teachers and public workers is bad policy and it’s flat a** wrong.”
Trumka said the larger fight remains between the “haves” and the “have nots.”
“When the rights of workers in one state can be stolen, all of us should feel a little less secure,” said Trumka. “This is about the corporate CEO agenda that equals more, more, more for them and less, less, less for us.”
With labor battles sprouting up throughout the midwest, Trumka remained optimistic that the people will prevail.
“Together, we’re a movement,” said Trumka. “We stand for our children and grandchildren, and tonight, you have been heard.”
That Maryland is controlled by Democrats and that the budget cuts the protesters were protesting have been proposed by Democrats was apparently lost on the protesters, as well as Trumka. Especially as the keynote speaker of the evening was the very governor proposing the cuts: Democrat Governor Marty O’Malley.
As noted by the Maryland Reporter:
It was a bizarre finale to a rally that brought thousands of state workers and teachers to Annapolis to protest cuts in pensions, retirement benefits and pupil spending. The last speaker was none other than the man who had triggered the rally by proposing the cuts: Gov. Martin O’Malley.
“I don’t like this budget either,” O’Malley said in a short speech. He was met by cheers, some grumbling, and the evening’s chant of “Keep the Promise.”
He proclaimed his strong support for collective bargaining rights for public workers.
“Our state is not like other states,” the governor said. “You will not find in Maryland the sort of Midwestern oppression that you find in Ohio and Wisconsin.”
The mixed messages at the rally were a sign of the co-dependency between the public officials who rely on teachers and unions for their base of support and the public employee unions that rely on the governor for their funding.
A “mixed message” is an understatement. With a governor bashing other states’ solutions to the mess public-sector unions and their political puppets have helped create by gaming the system, O’Malley’s pandering to the union crowd is nothing less than hilarious hypocrisy.
“I bring reason to your ears, and, in language as plain as ABC, hold up truth to your eyes.” Thomas Paine, December 23, 1776
Cross-posted on BigGovernment.com.