Socialism is lots of fun until it happens to you.
And then, suddenly, you’re no longer drawing up plans for taking away everyone’s health insurance while dictating that all government medial procedures will now consist of forcing them to listen to Marianne Williamson until they opt for euthanasia, but you’re the one being redistributed.
That’s what happened to the people working on the Wayne Messam campaign. You know, the third mayor of a terrible city running for president.
In particular, staff members claim that Wayne and his wife, Angela Messam, have refused to pay them for their work. All of the staffers and vendors that BuzzFeed News spoke with said they were never fully compensated for their work on the campaign and, in some cases, weren’t paid at all for expenses they’d fronted from their own bank accounts, including business cards for the campaign and flights, hotel rooms, and security costs for a trip to the Middle East. In some instances, staffers were told by the Messams that the couple believed them to be “volunteering” for the campaign, despite emails from senior staff to the Messams telling them about start dates for employees, and what staff members say were verbal agreements and offer letters from the campaign for their positions.
“This is the most immoral, unethical thing I’ve ever seen in my 15 years of politics,” CeCe Grant, the former chief operations director for Messam’s campaign, told BuzzFeed News in an interview.ing.
Talk about being overqualified.
In February 2019, staffers worked with advisers to help coordinate travel and schedules for a March trip to the Palestinian territories and Israel that the Messam campaign wanted to take to get a better understanding of the Middle East and foreign policy. Campaign workers and other aides told BuzzFeed News that one staffer had paid nearly $5,000 to cover a deposit for a security team, as well as the cost of tours, hotels, meals, and their own flight for the two-day trip and that they hadn’t been reimbursed by the campaign or the exploratory committee.
It’s okay. Messam’s campaign was just doing to his staffers what he was planning to do to the country.
On an organized call after that email to answer questions about what was happening to the staff’s paychecks, the Messams told staffers that they didn’t know some of the employees or contractors and that they had assumed some staff members were volunteering for the campaign. They told other staffers that they just didn’t have the money to pay them for their work, according to multiple employees and contractors who joined the call.
“You really think all of these people, all of these professionals, are going to work for free?” one employee asked incredulously in an interview with BuzzFeed News.
Hey, it’s socialism.
I can’t say who was defrauding whom here anyway.
Did Messam’s people really believe he had a shot at being recognized in Iowa, let alone at the nomination? They expected to get paid by a hopeless campaign. And then it turned out that the guys being taken to the cleaners weren’t the donors, who didn’t exist, or the Messams, but the staffers who expected to cash in and gain some experience. They got paid in experience instead. This is what socialism looks like.