Labor — December 14, 2012

A message to my union brothers and sisters


We’re all in this together

Wow. What a crazy week. I feel a profound responsibility to keep people informed about what’s happening in Michigan. This week we appear to have succeeded, even if only a little. Our coverage of the Right to Work for Less rally in Lansing, Michigan has been picked up nationally by the New York Times news blog, Salon, Forbes, Little Green Footballs,, and

It’s bad enough that corporatist tea party Republicans that have taken over our state and shaped it into something completely unrecognizable. But they also attempted to distract the national conversation away from what they have done to organized labor and workers in Michigan, the birth place of labor unions in this country. Instead, they tried to take the dumbass behavior of a handful of frightened and angry workers and portray the thousands and thousands of caring, thoughtful Michiganders as if they were thugs and criminals.

Teachers. Construction workers. Government employees. Nurses. The men and women that build our cars, drive our trucks, serve our food, and clean our hotel rooms. Our family members, our neighbors, and our friends. The people that educate our children. The people that care for our aging parents and injured children. The people that make our water drinkable and that drive our city buses.

Our political opponents have demonized these people as if they were nothing more than street criminals, parasitically sucking the lifeblood from our state.

This week at Eclectablog, we pushed back against that false and offensive narrative and pulled back the curtain just a bit to show the hypocrisy, greed and deceit being displayed by the anti-union forces allied against us.

I’m proud of that.

So, to my union brothers and sisters, I say this: I will continue to fight for your rights and for your rightful place in society. Never, ever let the bastards get you down and never compromise your values.

The battle is never completely won, of course.

But neither is it ever completely lost.


  • Thank you Chris!

  • Ramona

    Yes, you have become the “go-to” place for me, too. Thank you for all you’ve done (And Anne, too). I know it’s not easy when you’re trying to hold down a job, too, and I often wonder how you find the time.
    You are appreciated, and the work you’ve done to bring to the nation what’s happening in our state is–what’s that word again? Invaluable. Oh, and indispensable. For sure.


    • Thank you, Mona. Big fan over here.

      • Ramona

        Oh, yeah? So how come I’m not on your. . .
        blogroll?? :>)

        • Because I’m a negligent blog roll maker. You’re on as soon as I get to my laptop.


          • Ramona

            Wow, that was easy! I’m honored. Thank you.

          • It is done. I actually think you were on my blogroll when I was on blogger but I lost my links in the transition to WordPress and yours, among others I’m sure, got overlooked. That has been corrected.

            Need to visit you on your little island one day…

          • RantMan

            Bet you wouldn’t add me!

  • Georgina

    Thanks Chris and Ann. You both have done more than a phenomenal job this week. Breitbart and Twichy, WOO HOO. You know you did something right.

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  • the viceroy’s gin

    Wow, I click around and this appears to be just a site full of cheerleaders, celebrating the violent criminals arrested in Lansing this past week.

    There’s a path forward, but I don’t think you’re on it. The mainstream isn’t going to tolerate retro leftism in this state. The party’s over for that nonsense.

    • Thanks for the clicks. They pay our bills and ensure that we can continue to do what we do here. Stop by anytime.

      • the viceroy’s gin

        You’re welcome. It’s about the only support you’re going to get in this state. ;-)

    • Thomas Howes

      Are you part of the 99%, the 47%, or the 1%? The mainstream, as you call us, think your views are not our views. I think you should look in the mirror and decide who you are, and what you represent. I don’t know you, but I know your world view. If you are implying that our teachers and firefighters and police and automobile workers and public employees are celebrating what happened in Lansing, well, I think you are wrong. My opinion of course, but I think that this site full of cheerleaders will make the earth move under your feet. Michigan’s news is being seen around the country as an affront to the working class everywhere. I do commend you, however, for taking the time to keep up to date with the retro leftism in Michigan. Please keep reading, and expressing your views because they really light up my day! And come on, use your real name because I think it might be Snyder.

      • the viceroy’s gin

        Dude, the earth has already moved under your feet, despite your criminal buddies’ violent attacks against that movement. I wouldn’t bother fantasizing it’s about to move back. It moved because we made it move.

        We are the mainstream. This is our state. Not yours, and not your violent criminal buddies’.

  • Posted on HuffPo by amleth – 12/11/12 (used with permission).

    “My first union was the IBEW, when I worked on an assembly line at a refrigerator factory in small town in Indiana. I also have been in the IATSE as a theatre worker, the AAUP as a college professor, and the AFT as a public school teacher. Of all of them, the one I benefitted the most from was the AFT when I taught in NYC. I entered on an alternative path, on the basis of my prior college teaching and my degree work. I was unprepared for the job as a high school teacher, with no specific training whatsoever. The union provided after school programs, for which I was actually paid at about $25 per hour, and summer course work, including a life-saving course in classroom management. I am not sure I would have survived without the help and support of the union. Instead of failing, I went on to a second career of more than 20 years teaching in public schools in three states, by all accounting, a very successful career. I never had a bad experience with any of the unions with which I was affiliated, and am eternally thankful for those good experiences. The union haters claim it is all about money. I am here at the age of 72 to testify that union affiliation is about much more than money, and we would live in a much less decent and much less successful country without them. Solidarity forever!”