The most humorous contradiction in RI AFL-CIO President George Nee’s recent Providence Journal op-ed about the potential Rhode Island constitutional convention is the part where he insists he’s not a “fearmonger.” It’s funny because Nee starts by declaring:
We stand on the brink of a dangerous precipice. If Question 3 is approved, the floodgates will be opened to out-of-state special interests, and our Constitution could be radically altered and our rights stolen.
After saying he’s not “fearmongering,” Nee proceeds to end his paragraph with a double-barrel of exclamation points:
Do not be fooled! They do not support our best interests!
What? Him fearmonger?
The more telling contradiction, though, is the notion that Nee speaks for the working class. According to the Rhode Island AFL-CIO’s 990 report for 2012, Nee collected $171,731 from his organization and “related organizations.” Not a bad gig for a spokesman for the working class.
That’s a lot of motivation for the union fat cat to forget that, no matter what the delegates to the constitutional convention should decide, the people of Rhode Island will be able to approve or disapprove of any change. Let me write that again, with emphasis: The people of Rhode Island will be able to approve or disapprove of any change to the state constitution.
If you want to know whom George Nee represents and what he’s concerned about, try this mental experiment: Imagine the state of Rhode Island were to implement policies that resulted in an explosion of high-paying jobs that were not unionized. That would be devastating to the very-highly-paid Nee.
Now imagine the state of Rhode Island were to maintain the policies that are currently draining the state of economic vitality and private-sector jobs, thus increasing the prominence and reliance on unionized jobs that can be imposed by the force of the law — whether in government or dependent upon government. Mr. Nee’s services would then be so valuable to people who don’t want to leave the state that he might be able to negotiate his way over the $200,000 mark for his own income.
One has to wonder about Nee’s statement that “they” are against “our best interests.” By “our,” does he mean wealthy union organizers?