Blackmail campaign underway against Wisconsin businesses?

Posted by: ST on March 15, 2011 at 12:54 pm

Sure sounds like it.  Via James Taranto:

Last week, as the Wisconsin stalemate was coming to an end, we worried about the potential threat that unionized policemen, in “solidarity” with other unionized government employees, might tolerate or even participate in lawless behavior in order to undermine the workings of republican governance and preserve union privileges. Milwaukee radio host Charlie Sykes reports that Wisconsin businessmen are now receiving letters importuning them to oppose Gov. Scott Walker’s efforts on behalf of Wisconsin’s taxpayers:

The undersigned groups would like your company to publicly oppose Governor Walker’s efforts to virtually eliminate collective bargaining for public employees in Wisconsin. While we appreciate that you may need some time to consider this request, we ask for your response by March 17. In the event that you do not respond to this request by that date, we will assume that you stand with Governor Walker and against the teachers, nurses, police officers, fire fighters, and other dedicated public employees who serve our communities.

In the event that you cannot support this effort to save collective bargaining, please be advised that the undersigned will publicly and formally boycott the goods and services provided by your company. However, if you join us, we will do everything in our power to publicly celebrate your partnership in the fight to preserve the right of public employees to be heard at the bargaining table. Wisconsin’s public employee unions serve to protect and promote equality and fairness in the workplace. We hope you will stand with us and publicly share that ideal.

In the event you would like to discuss this matter further, please contact the executive Director of the Wisconsin Professional Police Association, Jim Palmer, at [phone number redacted].

Palmer’s union is the first of the seven “undersigned groups”; the others are two more police unions, two firemen’s unions and two teachers unions. Although the new legislation excludes police and fire unions from its limits on so-called collective bargaining, one can understand why they would oppose it: Their own privileges become less secure if they are the only ones to enjoy them.


But in principle, so-called collective bargaining is no less objectionable in the case of cops and firemen than of anyone else. Once the public accepts that it is over for everyone else, there won’t be much political support left for privileging the police and fire unions. Thus it makes perfect sense for them to side with the unions representing teachers and others with easier jobs. Their privileges are safe as long as everyone else’s are at least contested.

In the letter to Wisconsin businessmen, however, we see why so-called collective bargaining is particularly corrupting to the police. Although the letter explicitly threatens only an economic boycott, when it is written on behalf of the police–of those on whom all citizens depend to protect their safety–it invariably raises the prospect of another kind of boycott. Can a businessman who declines this heavy-handed “request” be confident that the police will do their job if he is the victim of a crime–particularly if the crime itself is in retaliation for his refusal to support “the dedicated public employees who serve our communities”?

Shades of the NYC sanitation union snow plow retaliation. Absolutely shameful.

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6 Responses to “Blackmail campaign underway against Wisconsin businesses?”


  1. Drew says:

    We can only hope (and this is actually what I believe) that the general population, including the business community, has reached an inflection point where they understand that a go-along, get-along attitude – or a turtle in shell attitude – can no longer be afforded. And that their very survival depends on abandoning this historical stance.

    It may be hyperbolic, but its a variant of “…or we shall all most assuredly hang seprately.” As a partner in a private equity firm who speaks with small businessmen and women every day I think we have finally reached the point of reckoning.

    To leach on a request from another post: “can I have an amen.”

  2. Tex says:

    That entire process whereby the public unions donate large sums of monies to Democratic candidates to get them elected so that when they are in office they will rubber stamp the unions’ demands for higher wages and benefits is so utterly corrupt it slaps the face of reason.

  3. Frank Nitti says:

    the gov. should give the unions a chance to rectify this(an Apology of some sort), if they don’t……fire them all and bring in the national guard. this can’t be allowed to happen.
    not sure why the unions think they can get away with this BS. if ever barry was going to say something about the mess in WI, it’s now.

    but alas he has his NCAA brackets to fill out……which reminds me.

    How about them Blue Devils, ST !!!!!!!!!!


  4. Chris says:

    Saaaay dair, nice lil’ country youze guys got goin’.

    Sure would be a shame if sumpin’ were t’ happen to it, if ya know wuddai mean?

    Perhaps me and da boize kin help widdat…

  5. Drew says:

    Screeeeeeeeew Duke. Go Boilers !!!!!! :d

  6. Where’s Serpico when you really need him?


    “Because the Only Good Progressive is a Failed Progressive”