A RANT ADDENDUM
June 5, 2012 § 1 Comment
Today’s New York Times has a supplement to my Sunday Rant. Well, that may be a mite misleading. The Times has never heard of me or my rant. But today’s column by Joe Nocera has some pertinent things to say about the indifference of America’s liberals and the Democratic Party to the fifty year assault on labor unions and the consequences of that indifference. In case you missed it, here is a link to the column: Nocera .
Also, for extra credit, to test your gag reflex, here is a link to a column by David Brooks from today’s Times. I always read Brooks’ columns because he is a perfect example of one of Bob Eckhardt’s unforgettable remarks.
Many years ago I made the mistake (one of many) of moving my family to Galveston to manage Maco Stewart’s effort to be elected to the Texas Senate. He lost. I moved back to Houston and Chris Dixie, ever patient with my disorderly ways, let me return to my office and continue to practice law with him.
After losing the Senate race, Maco re-designed himself as a right wing conservative and was elected to the Texas House of Representatives from a local conservative district. A few months later, I asked Eckhardt how Maco had done as a freshman legislator. Eckhardt drawled, “Maco Stewart is not an ordinary fuckup. He is a talented fuckup.”
Brooks is a talented fuckup. He is obviously smart and well read. He has described himself as a liberal “until I came to my senses.” That born again moment occurred, according to him, when he engaged in a televised debate with Milton Friedman, who so thoroughly bested him (according to Brooks) that he experienced an epiphany from which he has never recovered. [I gleaned this information from a Wikipedia piece on him.] So, when he ventures into the realm of economic policy, he invariably exposes the brain corset with which Friedman encased him.
I mention him today because his column, I think, attains a new level of absurdity that is remarkable, even for him. He acknowledges that Scott Walker pursued his right wing agenda in an “obnoxious” (his word) manner, but claims that if Walker wins today, it will not indicate anything about labor unions. It will be a recognition that Walker’s politically brave effort to rein in out-of-control public debt has, at last, caught on. His column is stupid in so many ways that it should become an example for college classes in logic or, perhaps, medical school classes in the pathology of brain damage.
Even Brooks, despite his aforesaid intellectual disability, should recognize that a Walker win might have some significance as evidence of organized labor’s diminished power; or class envy toward public employee union members; or the way huge amounts of corporate money undermine democracy; or a lot of things. What it will have little to do with is fiscal policy.