cur-mud-geon: anyone who hates hypocrisy and pretense and has the temerity to say so; anyone with the habit of pointing out unpleasant facts in an engaging and humorous manner
I am having difficulty with some of the union tactics that are being employed now.
We are probably all aware that labor organizations picket those companies or organizations with which they are in dispute. They also target supporters of those with which they are in dispute.
But now a business owner risks being targeted if he or she refuses to take any position…it is either for or against…this particular union; there is no more ‘neutral’. The public employees’ union, AFSCME, has resorted to threatening small business owners with boycotts if they refuse to display a pro-AFSCME sign in their place of business.
Reports have come in from Southeastern Wisconsin, including the Milwaukee area, about these occurrences. These small to medium businesses, which often are really ‘Mom & Pop’ operations, do not want to risk alienating any potential customers so they are particularly attuned to these things. Simply being threatened with a boycott is a big deal even though there may be little actual impact. They don’t know what the threat will be; they simply know they’re being muscled by the union. If a small business is already struggling given the current economy, these threats are akin to a death sentence in the offing.
There is more than sufficient angst on both sides of the many arguments now being waged in Wisconsin. The idea that this struggle has devolved to the use of threats against people trying to make a living in their own business if they don’t take the position that a union wants them to take is outrageous.
The earlier threat against Kwik Trip and the M&I Banks was one thing since those companies were supposedly targeted for supporting a particular person or position. The idea that if you don’t support a person or position you can be boycotted is a step too far. The solid majority of small businesses do not engage in publicly expressing a position in things political, either for or against. If they do, then they might expect this kind of threat.
It not only gives the union involved, AFSCME, a black eye, it threatens to cause people to think similarly about private sector unions when that isn’t warranted. Finally, AFSCME is threating the very people who pay taxes that support AFSCME members. That seems a bit counter-productive, doesn’t it?