Thursday, March 01, 2007

The Royalists Rear Their Ugly Heads

Chuck Schumer, in his marvelous book, "Postively American" (the Simply Left Behind recommended reading selection for February 2007), posits that the Republican party is made up of two factions: theocrats and economic royalists.

"Theocrats" is an obvious reference to those in the Republican party who would limit our freedoms in order to align the nation with "Christian teachings," which naturally have been warped from what Jesus actually taught.

"Economic royalists" are those more socially liberal Republicans who nonetheless adhere to doctrinaire beliefs about economic issues: lower taxes means more money for everyone, government has no business regulating business, and so on. In other words, devout capitalists, worshipping mammon.

Both pretty dogmatic, you'd agree, and ultimately irreconcilable. As Jesus Himself said, "No servant can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon." (Luke 16:13, for those of you playing along at home)

Comes this story today:
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Senate began debating legislation to bolster America's security on Wednesday with the White House threatening a veto because one part would extend union protection to 45,000 airport workers.

President George W. Bush's administration charged that the Democratic-backed provision to provide workers limited collective bargaining rights would curb needed flexibility at the U.S. Transportation Security Administration and diminish traveler safety.
For want of the ability to screw the workers of America, Republican royalists like Bush would allow us to continue lay vulnerable to the predations and rapine of terrorists, foreign and domestic.

This is a lot like a landlord refusing to fix a door to your apartment because you want to install a peephole. It's just one more measure to help ensure your security, yet it might cost him an extra buck or two.

Yes, unions cost corporations money. This is reflected in the facts that, as union memberships in this country have plummeted in the face of economic royalist assaults on the American worker and the American family, corporate profits have skyrocketed.

The time has come for unions to take their once-and-future place as protector of the American worker. When corporations can so boldly and baldly buy politicians, pay for and write legislation for their benefit, and exercise each and every right afforded you and I, to the detriment and diminishment of you and I, there must be some oversight.

Since the government, and in particular, the Bush administration, have been so lax in this fiduciary responsibility to its citizenry, we need a structure put in place that is non-partisan, non-governmental, and has the interests of the citizens it represents in mind.

David beat Goliath, yes, but with what amounted to a lucky shot. We can't count on 300 million Americans scoring lucky shots in health care, environmental protection, wage and job security, dependent care, pension security, and legal protections, among other vital issues. And we clearly can't count on our elected officials, of either party, to protect us as thoroughly as an union can.

Bush and the GOP talk a big game about "privitization" of governmental functions. For that reason alone, you'd think they would get behind mass unionization, and save the government bureaucratic bungling of most of the issues I mentioned above.

Unions can stand up, collectively, against the behemoths of corporate America, and with one voice, tell them to be on guard and to treat people fairly.

The time has come, folks, the time has come. Let's reverse twenty five years of Republican economic royalty, and bring our unions back!