The Corner

Remember Who’s at the End of the Parade

I don’t share the beliefs or goals of organized labor at all. Still, as I read the Capital Research Center’s latest Labor Watch newsletter, with its excellent exploration of the incoming Obama administration’s likely relationship with the labor movement, I couldn’t help but admire the sheer gall of one official:

Feeling burned by the last Democratic president, Bill Clinton, who generally supported free trade, the unions aren’t taking anything for granted. “Unlike in the past, instead of saying ‘OK, we’ve elected you, now do what’s right by us,’ we are going to keep our machinery in place,” AFL-CIO Treasurer Richard Trumka told Bloomberg News. “We are going to make sure that our interests are considered at the front of the parade.”

Yes, it’s a mixed metaphor, but it’s illustrative.

Also, with all the political promises flying about in Washington in this holiday season, it’s appropriate to remember who is traditionally riding at the end of the parade.

John Hood is a syndicated columnist and the president of the John William Pope Foundation, a North Carolina–based grantmaker.

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