No one outside of the actual Occupy Wall Street protesters believes that the events are anything but a set of union-organized and bolstered campaigns. Union elites are staging these events to try and turn the current anti-union popular sentiment against companies and jobs creators instead.
The unions’ messaging will either co-opt the purpose of the protests or muddy the already confused set of causes coming out of occupy this and occupy that events. Are these protests intending to get banks to lower debit card fees? Is it to get the rich to pay their "fair share" as Obama so wrongly puts it, is it to give unions more tools to intimidate workers (card-check)? Protesters are asking for anarchy, communism, socialism, a dictatorship, end to corporations, and complaining that they are so poor that they have no choice but to run around bare-breasted.
The protesters are just asking for much more government, or no government depending upon who you talk to. There is no cohesive message, but the unions are about to change that – for their benefit.
Back in March, ex-labor leader and self-title "economic terrorist" Steven Lerner was pushing for these kinds of "disruptions". Here’s an excerpt of a piece by Ezra Klein in the Washington Post:
Union types are always looking for “leverage.” Leverage is what I have that gives me power over you. And Lerner thinks he’s identified the point of leverage that workers and homeowners and students have over the financial system. “What does the other side fear most?” Lerner asked. “They fear disruption, they fear uncertainty.
To start, unions are asking for corporations to pay more in taxes to create more jobs – because that makes sense in the land of rainbow-farting unicorns. Soon, big-labor will add their real messaging of instituting card-check and putting limits on how much corporations can donate to political campaigns while unions maintain their ability to bundle and donate unlimited amounts of money to liberal candidates.
Labor leaders were until recently quietly propping up these events, but thanks to a letter from current SEIU President Mary Kay Henry, the amount of union involvement in this supposed people’s grassroots revolt is not only obvious, but flaunted (emphasis mine).
By now you’ve seen the thousands of brave students, workers and the unemployed occupying Wall Street.
But did you know that as of yesterday, there are over 300 solidarity "occupy events" happening across the country and around the clock?
In Philadelphia, 1,000+ individuals took to City Hall on Tuesday night.
In Washington, D.C., people have camped out in McPherson Square, symbolically located on K Street, since last week.
In L.A., citizens have spent six straight days and nights outside City Hall protesting against income inequality and joblessness.
The crowds and peaceful demonstrations will only get larger and louder as more Americans find the courage to stand up and demand Wall Street, CEOs and millionaires pay their fair share to create good jobs now.
This is the moment that determines whether this movement succeeds or falls flat. Will you pledge to help the movement spread by visiting an Occupy event in Bell Buckle? You can sign up and find a comprehensive list of events here:
Over the last few weeks we’ve seen crowds of "Occupy Wall Street" protestors capture the nation’s attention as they stood their ground despite aggressive police behavior and hundreds of arrests.
These courageous young activists have given us all a shot of inspiration and hope that we can indeed turn this country around.
We are proud of the actions taken by 1199 United Healthcare Workers East, SEIU 32BJ and other SEIU local unions to support the Wall Street protests.
But as we talk to other "Occupy" participants across the country, they tell us their first need is people.
So we’re working with our friends at Daily Kos to see if we can help.
Find an Occupy event happening in your city and pledge to sign up to get involved. You can do that here:
As part of a peaceful, united movement we can do so much more to demonstrate the increasing urgency of the crisis our country faces and shine a light on those responsible.
Let’s go for it!
Mary Kay Henry
And here’s Steven Lerner in his well-known speech to prepare to "terrify D.C."