. . . anyone but themselves. I’m not going to waste time searching out all of the left wing excuses for yesterday’s taxpayer victories in Wisconsin, San Diego and San Jose. The tried and true playbook will be to turn to the courts to defeat the will of the voters in the California elections and to blame money and a bad message in Wisconsin. I watched the President of the San Diego firefighters union, Frank De Clercq, on KUSI on election night telling the voters that he would be heading to court to thwart their will. His basic argument is that the taxpayers were only allowed to change his benefits through negotiation. My answer is, tough, your unions have helped elect patsies who have promised pension benefits that were unaffordable. Those promises were made on my behalf, but not in my best interests as a taxpayer. For me this is personal, to De Clercq and Michael Zucchet, my message is that you were work for us, we don’t work for you. As your employer we should have the absolute right to change the conditions of employment when economic circumstances require. There is no inherent right of government employees to be allowed to bargain for wages and benefits. As I have pointed out before:
I am an employee for the federal government. Much of my expected pension benefit comes from a 401 style plan. I’m not in a union. Even if I was, the union couldn’t bargain for my pay and benefits, only work place rules. But I have significant protections against unjust firings and am afforded excellent work place accommodations. Why isn’t this good enough for state and local workers?
In Wisconsin, Walker’s victory was by a significant amount, not a landslide, but the 7% margin left no doubt as to the significant strength of his position. I have seen headlines that I refuse to link calling the election close. I have also seen headlines that this is the “death of democracy.” Normally, when we elect politicians, we complain that they don’t keep their campaign promises. How ironic that Scott Walker was recalled for keeping his.
Contrast the left’s response to what conservatives do when they lose elections. Here is what I wrote in 2008.
Unfortunately, the left is not the only enemy of freedom. One of the reasons for the Obama victory was the failure of Republicans under George Bush to champion limited government, see prescriptions for seniors, “No Child Left Behind” and caving on steel tariffs. This failure was the result of ignorance, lust for power, and corruption. Further, the Republicans became identified as the “party of big government.” I believe that voters are rational; given the choice between two big government parties, the people voted for the party more ideologically committed to making big government work. Dean has more on this in an election post-mortem.
The introspection about our own faults is an important corrective to missteps that we will inevitably make. For reasons not clear to me, the left seems more likely to dwell on the external circumstances that lead to their electoral defeats than libertarians and conservatives.