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Democrats Have Union Labels On Their Bumper Stickers.

I sometimes get slightly irritated these days. I learn fewer new things each day, it seems. It's just the way it is. I try to branch out and learn new skills, new information, and so on, but it just seems like I have hit a point where I don't learn thousands of new things each day. And within the field of politics, there's just next to nothing left to learn (so it seems). But I did make one random discovery recently. Indeed, I learned something new.

Democrats-- most of them, at least-- have union labels on their bumper stickers. And if you don't have one, you are seen by left-wing purists as a sell-out, or too moderate, or not sufficiently Democratic.

Take this Russ Feingold bumper sticker I picked up at a recent gathering of young left-wingers in the Midwest, for example:


Okay, pretty poor sticker, I agree, but it, along with tons of other stickers I picked up, has this somewhat annoying squigly label thing on it. It's so small, one cannot even really read it, even with a magnifying glass. So I scanned it on ultra-high resolution. Here it is:


And nearly all of them have this label. All the weird "progressive" groups with stickers about bucking Fush and impeaching Bush and otherwise hating Bush. Nearly all of the wannabe-2008ers have the union label. All the pro-abortion, environmentalist, and other left-leaning special interest groups all have the insignia.

It's highly foreign, having grown up in states with weak unions, having such extraneous information on a bumper sticker. And you can't even read it. You can barely notice it, except to be slightly distracted by it... and to notice that nearly all of the insignias on the stickers have eerily similar designs.

If it weren't there, people would notice. It's just another symbolic, "I AM A DEPENDABLE ANTI-BUSINESS SOCIALIST" type of statement Democrats communicate surreptitiously with "the base" without anyone else really noticing.

Now, I have been keeping a keen eye out over the past few days, and not all liberal bumper stickers have union labels on them. Former Virginia Governor, Democrat Mark Warner, for example, has no union label on his stickers. It's likely part of his "moderate" image he so carefully cultivates. Then again, he's not officially running, and the stickers are all part of a manufactured "draft Warner" type of movement.

Indeed, at the recent gathering of young liberals, people actually did notice the union labels, or lack thereof. Few people were interested in signing up with-- and learning more about-- Mark Warner. Far more wanted to hear from the Russ Feingold folks. Overheard, more than once, in slightly different forms: "Warner can't be a true progressive without a union label on his bumper."

And that's how I even noticed the union label on all the stickers. I might have completely overlooked them had I not heard those sorts of comments.

So, if you want to judge the ideological purity (on labor issues, at least) of your local Democrats, and see if they might be running for President in 2008, check out their campaign paraphernalia. Look for the union label. If it's not there, your local Democrat probably has very little shot at getting a national Democratic nomination.

Who knew?

Incidentally, as the strength of the "progressive grassroots" community increases, the chances of Democrats ever winning a national election draws closer and closer to nil. Those people are literally insane. Literally.

Posted by Will Franklin · 25 July 2006 05:25 PM


You forget to put up the lobbiest dollars unions give Dem's. Compare that to oil contributions to Rep's. Scary.

Posted by: christian at July 25, 2006 06:22 PM

I don't see how supporting unions is anti-business socialism. Socialism is government ownership of business, and that's not generally considered a union goal. As to anti-business, well, a union is pitting its economic strength against a business in order to get more money (wages, benefits). But so do suppliers and buyers. They often hash out tough deals with a business. That's what the market is all about. Is Walmart anti-business? They sure drive hard bargains with manufacturers.

Posted by: Quiddity at July 25, 2006 07:55 PM

Encyclopedia Brittanica defines socialism as:

system of social organization in which property and the distribution of income are subject to social control rather than individual determination or market forces.

Unions are about redistributing wealth and are consistently using government means to do so. They don't just negotiate with businesses such as you example--Walmart does. They have progressively legislated things like the minimum wage and most recently, the anti-Walmart health insurance act in Maryland. Their goal is to unionize Walmart, force Walmart to make involuntary contributions above and beyond what the market dictates to worker health care, or put them out of business in Maryland.

Union endorsement of political candidates demonstrates that the candidate is a supporter of the extensive agenda and system of forcing unfair contracts and conditions on employers and manufacturers. They do not hash our difficuly deals with business, they use government to force things upon the business. Businesses should be free to hire and fire whoever they want, but union rules set up systems that do not allow this.

Posted by: Justin B at July 25, 2006 11:14 PM

Having been around unions a bit in the political arena, in places like Minnesota, it's clear that most of these people are just angry Marxists.

Posted by: Will Franklin at July 26, 2006 08:58 AM

Perhaps unions have gone too far. I suspect our system of checks and balances will reign them back in. But, can you imagine how much poorer our way of life in this country would be without the union movement of 20th century. Seriously folks, there'd be no middle class just very rich and very poor. Why ,in a free market economy , is it Marxist to expect to negotiate the highest price for your labor.

Posted by: dex at July 27, 2006 07:05 AM


Why is union membership at an all-time low? Unions are not just about negotiating a higher price for labor. They are a political machine for the selling of mass quantities of votes in elections. Unions have been involved in all kinds of scams throughout our history too.

I don't buy the argument that there would be no middle class if not for unions. Unions are not responsible for most white collar jobs in this country. Most white collar positions are non-union. And most white collar jobs are the higher paying jobs.

Unions may have had A PLACE in our history and it is true that some businesses in the late 1800's were not wonderful employers, but unions were not wonderful either. Many of the problems of that era were related to immigration problems and it was primarily immigrants that had the low pay and horrible conditions.

What is happening to the "middle class" union worker now days? Those union contracts are worthless because the unions bankrupted companies with benefits and pension plans that are not sustainable. How does that help the "middle class"?

Posted by: Justin B at July 27, 2006 03:42 PM

As I said Justin unions have gone too far, but I think you are naive to think that those white collar jobs would be "high paying" without the reforms facilitated by unions. Maybe all the scrooges would have been visited by 3 ghosts but I doubt it.

Posted by: dex at July 29, 2006 06:01 AM

So which part do we disagree on? That Unions at one time were necessary during the early industrial revolution or that Unions border on irrelevant and quite frankly hurtful to today's business world?

Unions used to be about the middle class and middle America. Representing the interests of American workers. Now, their members are watching their jobs being outsourced at a higher rate than most and the companies they have held hostage are going bankrupt and leaving Union members without pensions, healthcare, jobs, savings...

So we blame greedy corporate executives for sending the jobs overseas or filing Chapter 11 and cancelling the Union deal. Locking out grocery store employees in California. Fact is that Unions are not helping their workers. Add in their support for the far left wing social policies like Gay Marriage, Abortion on Demand, etc., and the Unions have lost touch with their members. Just like the Democrats have lost touch with these same people.

Unions are not about what is best for their members anymore. They are simply a tool of the big money Democratic Party vote machine. They are vote brokers. And occasional extortionists to the companies they negotiate with.

They have outlived their purpose. By about 50 years.

Posted by: Justin B at July 29, 2006 12:42 PM

Justin I will throw in the towel on that note, but as a big brown union member myself, I would hate to think I had to go back to work Monday without their representation. I may be stabbing myself in the back but I have never endorsed the union slate and have never voted for a democratic presidential candidate. Which came first the chicken or the egg? I suspect brown would have been more comfortable to don had it never been unionized but I have to live in the here and now.

Posted by: dex at July 29, 2006 07:25 PM

As a sidenote though Justin, I do appreciate the mature discussion on the subject. I would like to say one more thing on the subject and this may be largely a regional issue. My obversations have been that most industrial jobs that have migrated south are the low paying textile type jobs. Talk about greed, they weren't paying a livable wage to begin with.

Posted by: dex at July 29, 2006 07:35 PM