The Dog that didn’t Bark
May 4, 2011 1 Comment
Sherlock Holmes once solved a murder by figuring out that a dog at the crime scene didn’t make a fuss because the killer was no intruder, but the dog’s master.
We remembered that this week, maybe because of what happened in the Massachusetts House of Representatives, and what didn’t happen.
Late last Tuesday night, the Massachusetts House voted 111-42 to do what standard media jive describes as “stripping public employees of most of their collective bargaining rights.”
The Massachusetts House has 160 members. We did a quick count and found 30 Republicans. So without bothering to look up the roll call we know more than half the Democrats voted for the bill.
More amazing: Periodic searches since last Wednesday have turned up no reports of mobs occupying the Capitol, making death threats against legislators, or waving posters of Democratic Governor Deval Patrick—who supported the legislation—painted with Hitler mustaches.
As Wisconsin school boards and mayors scurry back and forth trying to thwart collective bargaining reforms, local officials in Massachusetts actually seem to appreciate the chance to avert bankruptcy.
It’s not as if Massachusetts Democrats are exhibiting raw political courage. The reality is they’ve long known this had to happen, but now they have Scott Walker to hide behind. It seems Wisconsin voters have given Massachusetts Liberals political cover to be responsible—more or less—while claiming what’s happened in Wisconsin is “meanness,” and not to be confused with what they’ve done.
The Boston Globe quoted a University of Massachusetts professor saying, “What we’re seeing here is an inroad into collective bargaining that would have been inconceivable even two years ago.’’ He might more accurately have said it was “inconceivable until Scott Walker became Governor of Wisconsin.”