Archive for March 15th, 2011
In track and field, when a runner has the wind at his back, and records he sets don’t count. Of course, in track, the win is still fair, because all the runners run under the same conditions. With the press, it’s always uphill and against the wind for Republicans and Tea Parties, downhill and wind-assisted for Democrats and unions.
In a previous post, I put up a little retrospective of some of the more troubling behavior by Wisconsin public servants, aided and abetted by college students, Organizing for America, and the DNC. I doubt whether even Mike Littwin would be able to claim this as a “win” if most of the country had seen these events as they were happening. The national media, which goes out of its way, if necessary, to make up stuff about Tea Partiers, was rigorously careful not to expose the American public to these scenes.
What are perceived as heavy-handed tactics often have a way of backfiring. (In Pennsylvania during the Constitutional ratification convention, for instance, dissenting members of the convention fled the scene to deny the convention a quorum, and two of them had to be hauled back bodily to Independence Hall to get the 2/3 necessary for business. This, along with the refusal of the press to publish speeches critical of the Constitution and the refusal of the convention’s official journal to record all the speeches, forced the Federalists to tread much more carefully in succeeding states, particularly Massachusetts, New York, and Virginia.)
But they don’t usually backfire when the targets are unsympathetic louts.
Just to pick on Mike a little, the last lines in his column suggest that the DC Democrats might find the inspiration and spine to make bold entitlement reform proposals from the events in Wisconsin. This makes no sense. In Wisconsin, the Democrats were defending the insupportable and unsustainable status quo. Failing to deal with entitlements, as the President has failed to do, would be more in keeping with that strategy.
While it remains to be seen if the public sector unions in Wisconsin can (re)build a political movement based on coercion and extortion, it’s worth remembering that they’d have no chance of doing so without help from their friend in the working press. Let’s a take a little trip down memory lane, so close it almost seems like yesterday:
Attack FreedomWorks’ Tabitha Hale
Protesters re-take the Wisconsin Capitol
Wisconsin GOP Senator Glenn Grothman chased, trapped by hecklers, saved by Dem. Rep. Brett Hulsey
Wisconsin Union Wisconsin Republican senators leave through secret tunnel after march 9th vote
Chances are, unless you were reading Ann Alhouse’s blog or Instapundit you didn’t know about much of this. That, combined with the national media blackout on the death threats against Wisconsin Republicans, and the protestors who’ve taken to taking down license plate numbers of their political opponents, constitutes the sort of propaganda that money literally can’t buy.
Well, that shouldn’t be any surprise to anyone living in Denver over the last few years. But usually they have the decency to pretend that it’s for someone else. This time, the Denver City Council wants your money for themselves and the office some of them hope to occupy come May.
At last night’s City Council meeting, they voted themselves (10-3, the Denver Post article neglects to mention who the three were) a 6.6% pay raise, starting two years from now:
Denver is the only large city in Colorado that pays its council members a living wage — $78,173 a year, plus about $30,000 in benefits.
The raise would give the council members an annual salary of $83,332 by July 2014. The council president makes about $10,000 more.
The mayor’s salary will grow to $155,211 from its current $145,601. The salaries of both the clerk and recorder and the auditor would be $134,235, up from their current $125,924.
Right now, the seasonally unadjusted unemployment rate for Denver is 10.9%; a seasonal adjustment might bring that down to 10.4% or so. This is the highest that it’s been going all the way back to 1994, when the CDLE numbers begin.
In addition, Denver is looking at a $100,000,000 budget gap this year, slated to get worse over the next decade. To City Council chairman Chris Nevitt, this may only be “symbolic,” but it’s pretty clear what it’s symbolic of.