I’ve been depressed the last several days. It seems like the social fabric is falling apart already…and times are still good. I’m the alien on Facebook. 60 Tea Partiers vs. 1000 union members in Canton. Mitch Daniels showing himself as a punk coward. Talk of a general strike, to toy with the lives of the poor and unfortunate. Talk of >$200 oil. Talk of the Pres__ent training mob leaders this summer.
It’s not about wages. That’s Team Blue’s game. Who am I to say that somebody makes “too much money”? Teachers are well-paid everywhere, union or no. It’s been claimed that if they were paid babysitter wages for each of those kids, they’d be making more. But I don’t begrudge them. I understand why the state can’t pay though; I suspect that STRS hasn’t been any better managed than Social Security. And we can’t talk about “fair wages” in an area where they can’t be ascertained because market forces are not at work, because of access restriction through licensure, and because public employees elect their own management. That’s the real issue here. The kids have Dad’s wallet, and not only are they going to set their own allowance, but they’ve got an allowance for all their friends too.
And what about this “right” to collectively bargain? Where’d that come from? If a “collective” imposes itself on a deal between two people in a state of nature, that collective is a MOB. Now, if homie wants to play that, OK, but there are a lot more workers in the private sector…and these days they have a lot less to lose. Sure, in a state of nature, a bunch of guys could see the boss and say, “We’ll all only work for this much”. And the boss could say, “No sale”, and hire others, and they’d go elsewhere, assuming they aren’t a mob. Or are they discussing a legal “right” (privilege) that didn’t exist until the 1960s? If rights are so crucial, why is it that the same political party that the unions have designated as their bargaining agent is so cavalier about other rights, like the rights to private property, self defense, religion, travel, search and seizure, among others? At the very least, they’ve been around longer, and one can make a better case for them being intrinsic to the nature of man.
And they’re complaining about old books and computers. OK, the textbook industry is a huge scam, especially at the collegiate level. The canon of Western art music doesn’t change every three years, so why should the Norton Anthology? But at the lower level, there are so many approval hoops to jump through. Whey can’t we have open source textbooks? They could have alternative chapters to choose from, and could either be read online, or printed through Lulu, and they would still be cheaper than what the big publishers peddle…and probably more interesting. And if in fact teachers don’t have the supplies to properly do their jobs, why isn’t that a matter for collective bargaining? Or is it one of the things they throw in as a chip, to be discarded the first day?
The Pres__ent is sending in Organizing for American goods to stir the pot. And everyone has to take a side, it seems. Civil War II is here, and it’s not state against state or even race against race, but neighbor against neighbor. And when the shooting starts, as it will, they’ll drive the conservatives out of Cleveland Heights just as liberals will suddenly feel unwelcome in Windham. Then the invasions begin.