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Appearing on NBC’s Meet the Press yesterday, AFL-CIO Richard Trumka was given two golden opportunities to do the very thing the left claims is so important to them: tone down violent, incendiary rhetoric. He couldn’t bring himself to do it. Asked to condemn the angry words and images that union supporters have employed in Wisconsin, Trumka chose to dance around the question instead:
“We should be sitting down trying to create jobs,” he said. “In Wisconsin, a vast majority of the people think this governor has overreached. His popularity has gone down. They’re saying to him, sit down and negotiate; don’t do what you’ve been doing. So he’s losing.”
Even if one were to accept the dubious premise that Governor Scott Walker is “losing” his battle with the teachers union in Wisconsin, Trumka’s answer is at once disingenuous, troubling and typical of the leftist mindset. The disingenuous part is obvious: Trumka never actually answered a question that was posed twice. Imagine how the old media would have reacted if a conservative leader like Sarah Palin or Rand Paul sidestepped an opportunity to denounce violent rhetoric on the right.
What’s troubling, though sadly unsurprising, is what this reveals about the way a leftist leader like Trumka thinks. Asked to denounce a tactic, he comes back with an answer that implies that such tactics are working. Trumka doesn’t actually come out and say that the end justifies the means, but it’s pretty obvious that he feels that way. Far from discouraging leftist protestors from employing violent imagery and rhetoric, Trumka’s answer sounds an awful lot like a nod of approval for the results that those tactics have supposedly achieved.
But the “do as I say, not as I do” leftist mindset has been on full display as long as the standoff in Wisconsin has continued. The left says that public discourse ought to be civil, unless it involves a position that’s important to the left, in which case anything goes. Teachers unions are always demanding more for their members in the name of the best interests of the kids they educate, but they don’t have a problem orchestrating what amounts to an illegal strike when the union’s interests are threatened. Elections and majority rule are wonderful concepts on the left, until they lose an election and are in the minority. In that case, running away and hiding so that you don’t have to accede to the will of the majority is perfectly acceptable. If the battle of Wisconsin proves anything, it’s another demonstration of the self-serving hypocrisy that permeates the left in America.
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