In literature, the expression “damning with faint praise” refers to wording that seemingly compliments its subject but is, in fact, a subtle and sarcastic jab. Whether intentional or not, a presumed hit piece headlined “The Freedom Foundation is Coming for Your Members” published this past week on the union-backed UCommBlog website accomplishes just the opposite.
Citing a litany of alleged “anti-union” activities engaged in by the Freedom Foundation, author Brian Young effectively praises us with faint damnation.
When he says, for example, “Over the last few years, the Freedom Foundation has gotten very good at what they do,” he isn’t expressing admiration.
Likewise, when Young notes that, “Unlike other anti-union groups, the Freedom Foundation actually spends the time and money to knock on doors and make home visits,” the sense of foreboding in his tone is palpable.
UComm is, after all, an acronym for Union Communications and Consulting Services, and Michael Young wasn’t hired to express independent thought.
He is, quite literally, a paid shill whose job description includes putting a union spin on every news development he writes about, even when it requires bending the truth.
Take the article’s headline. The Freedom Foundation is, most certainly, “coming for” union members, but he makes it sound like our tactics include clubbing them insensible and press-ganging them into Freedom Foundation servitude.
In point of fact, that’s closer to the union model than ours.
When we come for a union’s workers, we’re armed only with the truth about their Constitutional rights and complete faith the workers will make the right decision for themselves and their families if they’re given an opportunity.
Young and the unions who make his lips move with dollars confiscated from the very workers both claim to revere, however, traffic in ignorance and suppression.
And they know their days are numbered, with Janus v. AFSCME scheduled to be heard by the U.S. Supreme Court exactly one month from today.
Even more flatteringly – an irony probably no one at UComm would be capable of appreciating – they also seem to know exactly who’s more responsible than any other advocacy group in the nation for their current calamity.
Young writes, “(The Freedom Foundation has) expanded and become a major anti-union force.”
Close, but not quite accurate.
We don’t oppose unions per se. What we oppose is unions that force workers who don’t share their values to join up or be fired. We also oppose unions that use the money they skim from workers’ paychecks to grease the palms of lawmakers more interested in power and privilege than public service.
Mostly, though, we oppose the liberty-killing, tax-raising, job-stifling leftist agenda – much of it having little or nothing to do with the wages, benefits or working conditions of government employees – unions demand their “members” subsidize.
We don’t consider these abuses synonymous with unions or organized labor, and if Mr. Young and his cohorts do, it says more about them than it does about us. Consequently, we’re justifiably proud to be the only agency most of these stories mention when they identify the most persistent threats to the dirty side of union business.
Unions don’t commission hit pieces on think tanks they don’t fear. Nor do union presidents make speeches denouncing opponents who simply write position papers and issue press releases.
We know we’re Public Enemy No. 1 in the smoky backrooms where government employee unions cut deals with corrupt politicians with your hard-earned tax dollars, and that’s fine with us because they’re Public Enemy No. 1 for anyone who values individual liberty, free markets and limited, accountable government. As we do.
And far from shaming us, fear-mongering diatribes published in union house organs are the rocket fuel on which our engine of truth runs.