Labor and Occupy: Comrades in Arms

by Matt Patterson on May 9, 2012 · 3 comments

in Culture, Labor, Sanctimony, Zeitgeist

The Washington Examiner is reporting that the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) is helping Occupy DC become a “more permanent fixture” of the Washington, D.C., landscape by moving the anti-freedom agitators into cozy offices in the heart of the nation’s capital. And as usual where “occupiers” are concerned, there is no shortage of hypocrisy to be found:

The Service Employees International Union, one of Obama’s most vocal supporters among labor groups, is paying $4,000 a month for three offices the Occupy protesters will use for at least the next six months to plan future demonstrations, organize and host workshops.

The offices are at the Institute for Policy Studies, a nonprofit progressive group headquartered at 16th and L streets NW, amid the major law firms, trade groups and lobbying shops that Occupiers have spent the past seven months denouncing. The offices are just a short distance from the tent city Occupy DC established in McPherson Square in October.

Occupiers moved into their new digs Monday. The SEIU will pay the rent for six months, said John Cavanagh, director of the Institute for Policy Studies.

Six months. Hmmm…that would take us right up to the November election, though of course the “occupiers” insist they are not there to help re-elect President Obama, in spite of their benefactors at the SEIU being among Obama’s most enthusiastic boosters. But never mind that — what is beyond dispute is that Big Labor, Occupy, and the Obama White House share an animosity toward those who amass “too much” wealth, the so-called and much maligned  ”1 percent.”

How ironic, then, that labor bosses can be counted among that dreaded category. Take AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka, who has been exposing the alleged exorbitant salaries of various CEOs with his organization’s new website Executive PayWatch. According to the Washington Free BeaconTrumka explained in an email to supporters:

Runaway CEO pay isn’t just bad for our economy, it’s bad for the morale of working families, too. All workers, from the executive suite down to the shop floor, contribute to making a company successful. But these corporations are buying into the myth that the success of a corporation is the result of its CEO alone.

But after stirring up all this hatred for the wealthy, Trumka may have  a hard time explaining his own “runaway pay.” Trumka earned $293,750 in 2011 alone, and in fact, as the Beacon reports, “has earned well over $200,000 every year since he was promoted to Secretary Treasurer [of the union] in 2003.”

Sounds like a 1-percenter to me. Time for Occupy AFL-CIO?

Just A Citizen May 10, 2012 at 6:19 pm

It’s pretty obvious your ears don’t do math very well. The starting point for the 1% is $386K as of 2006 per year when adjusted for inflation this comes to $439K in 2012 dollars, so it seems your ears think $294K sounds like $439K. I suspect if you are supposed to get paid $439K and there was only $294K you might notice the difference, if not feel free to check me a check for the difference. I am including the links below in case you actually want to fact check what you write, but I suspect you don’t care about these things as they will get in the way of your ideology.
While I can’t speak for Occupy, I can most certainly speak as part of the 99%. I do not hate rich people, I do however believe that they should be paying their fair share. This means that capital gains should be taxed at the same rate as a paycheck. I also believe that the very wealthy have too much influence in Washington and that both of our parties have been bought and paid for. They are two sides of the same coin and no longer represent the best interest of the people or the nation of which it is comprised.
I believe that corporations are not people and citizens united should be reversed by constitutional amendment.
I believe that the corrosive effect of money in our political system have created an uneven playing field that is undeniably causing wealth inequality, I’ll give you the link for that one as well.
Good luck with continuing to distort facts to your own purposes.
People are starting to smell something fishy……Seems like it’s only class warfare when we fight back

Information on wealth breakdown:
https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2011/10/30/nyregion/where-the-one-percent-fit-in-the-hierarchy-of-income.html

Information on wealth inequality:
http://www.businessinsider.com/15-charts-about-wealth-and-inequality-in-america-2010-4

Marc Scribner May 11, 2012 at 12:28 pm

The figure you cite is a “filing,” which is even broader than households, which are NOT individuals. Assuming Trumka’s wife works — which is likely because, according to a quick Google search, they live in a very large house on a large lot with a pool in suburban D.C. Montgomery County, Maryland, one of the richest counties in the country — and they file jointly, they are almost certainly in the mythical, hated, and feared ONE PERCENT.

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