RANGER AGAINST WAR: Unions and Health Care <

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Unions and Health Care

Free at last, free at last

I thank God I'm free at last

--American Negro Songs
, J. W. Work

It will be of little avail to the people

that the laws are made by men of their own choice

if the laws be so voluminous that they cannot be read,

or so incoherent that they cannot be understood

--James Madison

My choice early in life was either

to be a piano-player in a whorehouse or a politician.

And to tell the truth, there's hardly any difference

--Harry S. Truman


Ranger is a former union member, and the new health care bureaucracy seems a dagger aimed at the heart of organized labor.

A primary historical focus of unions has been their fight to achieve member health care. Now, this is no longer a negotiable contract clause since the government has preempted this union function.

In place of unions will be another complete federal bureaucracy necessitated as a result of this bill. Rep. John Dingell [D-MI], Dean of the House of Representatives said on a
Detroit radio program yesterday (the Paul W. Smith Show) that it will be a lengthy process implementing the "necessary administrative steps that have to be taken to put the legislation together to control the people." Slip of the tongue, or intentional vantage point?

Wage negotiation is the other major union function, but it, too, has been overcome by events. Most workers today are happy just to be employed.

Who said democrats favor unions?



Blogger BadTux said...

Today's Democratic Party is what the Republican Party was during Eisenhower's time. It's basically a bunch of moderate Republicans wearing donkey suits. And today's Republican Party is a bunch of screeching extremist nutcases, which makes you wonder why people vote for them. And liberal Democrats? They're over there in that closet, occasionally the Republicans-in-Democratic-clothing open the closet door and throw in a few chunks of raw meat, but they're never allowed out in public because, well, they're just so uncouth...

- Badtux the Uncouth Penguin

Thursday, March 25, 2010 at 11:35:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

Bad Tux,
I've never been able to understand why working class stiffs support the Republican party?
It has to be the welcoming warmth of ignorance.
Just sayin'

Thursday, March 25, 2010 at 2:32:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger BadTux said...

Ranger, in my younger days I worked in oil refineries doing electrical work. I know exactly why those peckerwoods have all run to the Republican Party: They hate people of color. They hate "niggers". They hate "beaners". They blame minorities for all their woes, and especially for driving down their wages via competition. A common expression I heard in the oil field was, "goddamn niggers getting out of their place, taking our jobs."

Today's Republican Party is their party of choice, ever since Ronald Reagan made the Republican Party's embrace of racism explicit by announcing the start of his Presidential campaign in Philadelphia, Mississippi, a hotbed of KKK activity then and now. When Patrick Buchanan announces to a stunned Rachel Maddow that the Republican Party should re-brand itself as "the party of white men", Patrick is merely acknowledging an already-done deed. White working-class men, buffeted by forces they don't understand, have settled on dark-skinned people as the cause of all their problems... and today's Republican Party is all too ready to welcome them and their racism with open arms.

- Badtux the Southern Penguin

Thursday, March 25, 2010 at 2:41:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Terrible said...

I could never understand it either. But I think maybe Bad Tux nails it. And so have you since ignorance and racism go hand in hand.

Thursday, March 25, 2010 at 3:14:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger The Minstrel Boy said...

it was easy to be an eisenhower republican. ike was a thinker, and a cosummate politician. those political skills are what enabled him to harness the power of an unstable genius like patton, while at the same time also driving a plodder like bradley in the same harness. while doing that he had to counterbalance the vicious mediocraty of montgomery, find ways to mitigate the damage done by idiots like clark, and somewhere in his spare time worry about what the fuck mcarthur was up to half a world away.

ike wasn't a great fighter himself. but he knew very well how to handle and manage them. jim will tell you that this is an important skill. fighters require handling and management because without that we tend to simply go out and start fights without thinking of things like grand strategy and overall impacts. without a firm hand at the tiller, we sail headlong into harm's way and damn the fucking torpedos.

another of ike's beautiful skills was his ability to look unconcerned and uninvolved when he was actually right up in the middle of things.

there were many folks who underestimated ike. figured he was a hands off golfing dillentante.

usually they would figure out that he had just run a game on them while he was teeing up at the 8th.

it was under nixon that the republicans really began to pander to the racists. they saw the once "solid south" of the democrats begin to crumble when lbj instuted his civil rights legislation and great society programs and they made a great effort to co-opt lifelong democrats like strom thurmond and george wallace.

is anyone else here concerned like me about the right wing violence?

broken windows, cut gas lines in homes (wrongly published to be the home of a democratic rep).

it's all fun and games until somebody loses an eye...

Thursday, March 25, 2010 at 4:36:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous fasteddiez said...

Kudos to Bad tux penguin for exposing the elephant in the room in his true colors. Kudos to MB for exposing the intellect behind Ike's golf bozo persona.

In days of olde, I worked as a Chemical Plant Operator in Channelview Texas (Houston Area)(Downhole drilling fluids); three quarters of the operators were black, as was 100% of the blend facility....it was the best job I ever had.

Thursday, March 25, 2010 at 4:56:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

I don't know how we got on the race thing, but when i was a 2lt i got screwed real bad by some white NCO's, but when i went to the 4.2 inch Mortar Platoon all my Nco's were black except one. This was one of the finest group of NCO's that i ever worked with, we had a great firing unit and i'm still proud of those days.

Thursday, March 25, 2010 at 5:21:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

Bad Tux,
The whole thing is subtlety itself.
Nixon's use of the concept of fighting crime and using law enforcement was a way of saying that crime was a black thing and the public elected him.Law and order was a sham.
It worked then and works now.
Interestingly last year 48% of all babies born in the US were non-white.
The world turns and moves on as per a Stephen King novel. So the politics will have to adapt.

Thursday, March 25, 2010 at 5:29:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger BadTux said...

I was quite pleasantly surprised when Obama was elected President and Payesh Jindal was elected governor of Louisiana (albeit having to pretend his first name was "Bobby" to do so). Things *have* changed.

Fasteddiez, I was doing oil refineries about the same time that the first black operators were coming in as a result of affirmative action in the aftermath of discrimination lawsuits filed by black job applicants who were passed over in favor of white applicants with inferior qualifications. I didn't notice any difference between the black operators and the white operators, other than the amount of racist rhetoric coming out of the white operators. The black operators tended to keep their mouths closed and keep to themselves, at which point the white operators called them "uppity" and "standoffish". But really, can you blame the black operators, given the number of "nigger" this and "nigger" that spewing from the white operators? Frankly, I didn't spend a whole lot of time socializing with the white operators either.

Ranger: You cannot ask any question about American society today without, at the core, running into the issue of race. Even the fuss over healthcare reform was often about race -- one thing I constantly heard on the right-wing forums and mailing list was things to the effect of they didn't want "their" tax monies going to subsidize health care for those "shiftless darkies". Siiiiiiiigh!

- Badtux the Oil Penguin

Thursday, March 25, 2010 at 5:37:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

I don't think IKE was ever within arty range of the enemy, but he was exactly the right man for the job.
As POTUS the same could be said, although my family suffered under the recessions of those years.
The shrinking of the coal industry saw my father moving to the auto industry as labor.Same for my maternal uncles who all retired as UAW men. But overall IKE was probably the best man for the times.
We suffered badly under Truman, as my memory indicates. We didn't eat real well.

Thursday, March 25, 2010 at 5:40:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

Both Lisa and myself have a question-the empty inner cities of Detroit/Cleveland etc.-where do all those people go?
This is a serious question which is beyond my grasp.

Thursday, March 25, 2010 at 5:44:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...


You are exactly right re. the subtext of race (as I noted in my piece on Rep. Boyd, and the NYT hinted at in their coverage of same.)

Though it is perhaps unfair to whitewash any group absolutely, blacks tend to cohere behind the black candidate, ditto frightened white men with white, Republican candidates.

Just the way it be today, in these dark times. Maybe same as it's ever been, just that blacks and women didn't have suffrage in the past. Women still don't know how to mobilize themselves.

Long-term subjugation bears misshapen fruit.

Thursday, March 25, 2010 at 5:55:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Serving Patriot said...

@Badtux, I like the way you think. And you're right.

As for Dems and unions, the Dems only like the unions for the votes. nothing more. Nothing less.

Can anyone say NAFTA? Championed by a Dem President.


Thursday, March 25, 2010 at 7:37:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Terrible said...

Well this isn't about health care but it is being promoted by US Labor Against the War as well as Veterans for Peace. I was going to email the link to Jim and Lisa but realized that most everyone who comes here would be interested in it also. There really isn't much in it that most people here probably aren't already aware of but it does an excellent job of putting the historical, economic and geo-political aspects of America's imperialism into proper perspective. I strongly encourage everyone to watch it and to then spread it far and wide.

Why are We in Afghanistan?


Thursday, March 25, 2010 at 8:34:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Missouri Mule said...

If anyone has any doubts left---Barack Obama or no Barack Obama---racism is alive and well in the U.S. of A---the xenophobic attitude toward the twenty million Mexican people already here and the twenty million others trying to get in every single day sends a surefire message to everyone else on the planet----we are not only still racists---we are, in fact, retarded racists.

Assholes assholes come in every color---even the ones in our very own families. My father taught me that much. But he didn't give that information over in some kind of Martin Luther King speech: I have a dream. That one day all the idots in our very own bloodline will actually figure out just how stupid they are and turn over their tools to someone who knows how to use them.

Whatever happened to judging very man on his own individual merits? So wiping the slate clean in America by pretendy we are all the same, all one big, happy family with equal rights and equal abilities just ain't owning up to the facts.

No one is born with a racist bone in his or her body. Your parents have to put it there. People will hate each other for almost any reason. People will break off into separate little groups to point at and gossip about and feed off their fear of other groups. Fear fear fear---that's where it all begins.

Tribal warfare doesn't only only exist in places like Africa and Iraq--pour an equal amount of alcohol into three Kansas City Chief fans and three Oakland Raiders fans and then lock them in the same room for fifty minutes. The only color involved would be blood, ladies and gentlemen. Broken teeth, bruised sternums and lots of blood.

And when it comes to baseball and racism---let's put Barry Bonds bullshit to bed too. A reporter on the Tavis Smiley radio show delivered a diatribe a while back about how all the negative media coverage of Barry Bonds was due to the color of his skin. Nope. It was due to the fact that he was a huge, gimongous, steroid-popping, lying, thieveing asshole.

Like Da said----they come in every color.

Friday, March 26, 2010 at 3:13:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

missouri mule,
The words that you use to describe Barry Bonds describe me with the exception that i don't do steroids.

Saturday, March 27, 2010 at 9:25:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger Jim3rdOpsBN said...

I was living in a dream world before Obama got elected... I thought the ranks of the racist had shrunk considerably in the last 30 years.... just because I didn't know any racists... then came Obama and the freaks exploded out of the woodwork like a flea infestation....

The idea that any elected officials are actual "leftists" is a joke... the Fox News types are so far to the right that it defies understanding.

Obama, the center-right corporatist being called a socialist would be hilarious if it weren't that legions of morons actually believe it.

Do you think that the white working class will ever wake up to their true peril? Has too much kool-aid been consumed for this to ever happen?

Monday, March 29, 2010 at 12:15:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...


I'm afraid racism (you-name-it-ism) will always be a sorry part of the human condition. It'll be there as long as fear is, and I don't see that evaporating anytime soon.

If one analogized our society to that of a well-functioning bee or ant colony, the difference would be our resentment (Kierkegaard's Ressentiment. Someone's getting one over on us; we could've been better, had more.

Too many of us operate within Sartre's idea of "bad faith". Since we don't know or like ourselves, the blame goes elsewhere.

Monday, March 29, 2010 at 12:49:00 PM GMT-5  

Post a Comment

<< Home