Unions: political speech or self preservation?

Trick question here: when talking to your employer about pay or other employment issues, do you feel like that’s political speech?

Yeah, a misleading question. The answer is obviously no. So for some background here: the Supreme Court is deciding a case on mandatory fees for public union membership. In other words, if you’re part of the union, the arguments at the Supreme Court seem to indicate that they consider this money in support of political speech.

Unlike other outlets that will essentially lie to get you to believe this is completely about employment stuff, I’m here to tell you the truth: unions do a lot more than that. Unions support the existence of unions.

Is that political? Yes, unions overwhelmingly support Democrats because Republicans are rabidly anti-union. So it becomes a political issue, indeed, just as the Supreme Court indicates. But it only becomes an issues because Republicans make it a campaign issue. In truth, unions are just trying to keep their power. This is, in fact, merely an issue of establishment being in favor of establishment.

In my opinion, both sides are being highly misrepresentative here. Unions are siding with Democrats to keep their power to collective bargain (which is very clearly their right) and Republicans are siding with big business to deny unions any power at all (which I figure is simply Republicans being loyal to their owners).

However, when it comes down to it, the actual issues come down to this: is it technically ILLEGAL for public unions to collect dues without giving their members a choice? And the business side says, ‘they’re using this money to donate to Democrats so it’s political speech and therefore shouldn’t be mandatory.’ And the unions are like, ‘you motherfuckers that’s only because you try to destroy us.’

Personally, I’m of the opinion that unions are a little outdated, yet I find this union-busting very distasteful.


Irrational Economists

So I was reading an article and I came across this:

Some economists refuse to believe that people are tricked by inflation, or at least that they err on a scale sufficient to affect economic patterns. These economists prefer to believe that people behave rationally, a belief that, in a wonderful instance of irony, happens itself to be irrational.

Am I asleep?

Anybody who says “wake up, people, so-and-so” is automatically a target of me ignoring them. It makes me immediately consider them conspiracy theorists. The kind of people that say “wake up” are the kind of people that imagine everyone is asleep to the “truth.”

While I don’t have the highest opinion of the general population, I find this categorization small-minded. There are many perspectives and trying to “wake” people up to a particular viewpoint indicates an inability to acknowledge an alternate view.

Now, that doesn’t mean whoever is saying it is wrong. It just means that I automatically assume they’re insane  and therefore ignore them. I’m not asleep. I’m not a sheep. Being condescending will get you nowhere.

And to the final use, “woke.”

Let me tell you how well I respond to bad conjugation. I don’t. I don’t respond to it at all. Don’t get me wrong, I get the idea of being aware of racial issues, but my brain shuts down when I see/hear this.

Again, let me reiterate that condescension, the insulting implication that I’m unaware or sleeping, and the irritating allegations that I’m a sheep all categorically put someone on my bad side. A little tact would go a long way.

Remember 2008?

I was all in for Obama. I was, of course, hopelessly optimistic and idealistic. Realistically, I should’ve known. Cynicism was my standard reaction even in 2008. But dammit, I believed that he would try to change things. And maybe he did try, but one thing I do know is that he failed. Change? Not actually an option.

You see, we have this wildly unrealistic view of what the president can do. we act like the president can do, well, really anything. The president cannot pass legislation. In this era, the president can’t even really guide it.

My ideals align pretty well with Bernie Sanders, but there’s a lot about him that just won’t work. He makes big promises that he literally cannot possibly deliver on. That’s been true for a long time. He advocates for a sort of capitalist-based safety net in the Scandinavian style. But congress would need to act on that and it was barely even possibly to cram Obamacare through with a Democratic House AND Senate.

Now Bernie Sanders is proposing a way to break up the big banks. That’s great and all. I’m totally down with that. But the way he wants to do it simply won’t work.

I’m tired of promises that can’t be kept. That’s why I lean toward Hillary Clinton. Do I like her? Ehhh not really. Do I like her cozy establishment ways? Eeehhh no. No I don’t. Not at all.

But Clinton promises are hard. They’re meaningful. If I wasn’t a cynic before, I sure as hell am now. I don’t think she’ll be great. I think she’ll engage in drone warfare way too much, work for the banks way too much, and probably cause huge issues while headbutting with Republicans.

But I think we’ve got to pick the better candidate for the job. Not the candidate that shares my ideals, but the candidate that will be best for the country. Not because I like her, but because Bernie Sanders promises what he can’t deliver and HE KNOWS IT. He’s a politician like any other. If we’re forced to choose, then we should choose the person who has the best chance to put us on the right path. Bernie will just get us into pointless squabbles.