Corzine and Reagan???

From Dennis Carmody’s Blog on

One of defining moments of Ronald Reagan’s presidency came in August 1981, when the air-traffic controllers went on strike. The president gave no mercy; he told them to get back to work or be fired.

Most didn’t go back, and Reagan was true to his word. Admirers see it as a great moment when the Gipper would not be bullied by public-sector workers demanding taxpayers give them more money for less work. Detractors see it as a vicious attack on trade unions, one that has hurt average working Americans ever since.

But whatever your view, the thing that’s worth remembering is that most voters sided with the president. That’s probably because 1) when it comes to public employees, we taxpayers in the private sector are management, not labor; and 2) the economy was tanking back then, and when people are worried about losing their own jobs, their patience with public sector union bosses who come off as unwilling to compromise is pretty thin.

Now that Corzine appears to no longer be balling Katz, will he be willing to force the unions into compromise? All the private sector working class asks is that public sector jobs pay similar (not more, not less) to private sector; that public sector benefits such as paid holidays are similar to public sector; and that public sector employees be actually required to perform their jobs and be rated on performance annually the same as public sector employees.


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