Mean-spirited Gov of Maine Takes Down "Labor Mural" in Lobby of Dept of Labor.. - Printable Version
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Mean-spirited Gov of Maine Takes Down "Labor Mural" in Lobby of Dept of Labor.. - Cha - 03-23-2011 09:51 PM
Reposted with author's permission..
LEPAGE JUST CAN'T HELP HIMSELF.... I'm still amazed this guy is actually the governor of Maine.
Gov. Paul LePage has ordered the removal of a 36-foot mural depicting Maine's labor history from the lobby of the Department of Labor.
Worker advocates described the move as a "mean-spirited" provocation amid the administration's high-tension standoff with unions.
Acting labor chief Laura Boyett emailed staff Tuesday about the mural's pending removal, as well as another administration directive to rename several department conference rooms that carry the names of pro-labor icons such as Cesar Chavez.
The governor's spokesperson told local reporters that honoring Maine's labor history is "one-sided" and bothers "some" unnamed business owners.
Now, I admittedly haven't seen the mural, but based on media accounts, it's "simply a depiction of Maine's labor history." It's reportedly not political per se, but shows the public, in 11 panels, key moments in the state, including "Rosie the Riveter" at Maine's Bath Iron Works. The local artist responsible for the mural explained, "There was never any intention to be pro-labor or anti-labor. It was a pure depiction of the facts."
But facts that Paul LePage don't like apparently have to be shuttered away. Celebrating working people is now, apparently, the kind of thing that might bother business interests. We're approaching an odd sort of political correctness that restricts messages that might somehow bother the wealthy and powerful.
What an embarrassment.
All of this comes on the heels of the buffoonish, far-right governor vowing to pursue a Wisconsin-like plan to undercut Maine's public-sector unions
Which was preceded by LePage trying to roll back Maine's child-labor laws.
Which was preceded by LePage paying for tax cuts for the rich by cutting services for Maine's middle class.
Which was preceded by LePage picking a fight with the Maine NAACP in which he said, "Tell them to kiss my butt."
The moral of the story is, electing a Tea Partier to be the chief executive of a state really isn't a good idea.
—Steve Benen 1:55 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (32)
A comment under Steve's blog said LePage was elected with only 38% of the vote..the other being spilt by an Indie and a Democrat.
My only hope is that these extreme acts of fascism will be responsible for extreme acts of Activism from the actual people who hold this country together.
Who do these "business people" think did their labor?
Disgusting and discouraging - There Is No Spoon - 03-23-2011 09:59 PM
I'm not sure what these people want, but they're sure to provoke a serious backlash.
RE: Mean-spirited Gov of Maine Takes Down "Labor Mural" in Lobby of Dept of Labor.. - SeattleGirl - 03-23-2011 10:00 PM
Wow, the Class of Overreach is really gonna take a hit with all the things they are doing!
And I'll be laughing my ass off!
RE: Mean-spirited Gov of Maine Takes Down "Labor Mural" in Lobby of Dept of Labor.. - Cha - 03-23-2011 10:07 PM
(03-23-2011 10:00 PM)Punky Wrote: Wow, the Class of Overreach is really gonna take a hit with all the things they are doing!It's unreal..They want to add insult to injury and not only take away their rights but their dignity too.
RE: Mean-spirited Gov of Maine Takes Down "Labor Mural" in Lobby of Dept of Labor.. - SeattleGirl - 03-23-2011 10:10 PM
(03-23-2011 10:07 PM)Cha Wrote:
Yep, that's exactly what they are doing.
I think they really have shot themselves in the foot with this. The majority of people in these states do NOT favor what these governors are doing, and of course, are making a move for recalls in some cases.
RE: Mean-spirited Gov of Maine Takes Down "Labor Mural" in Lobby of Dept of Labor.. - KonaKane - 03-23-2011 10:24 PM
If these fucks aren't carefu,l they are going to have a real war on their hands. MATEWAN style, baby.
RE: Mean-spirited Gov of Maine Takes Down "Labor Mural" in Lobby of Dept of Labor.. - There Is No Spoon - 03-23-2011 10:29 PM
(03-23-2011 10:24 PM)KonaKane Wrote: If these fucks aren't carefu,l they are going to have a real war on their hands. MATEWAN style, baby.
I'm trying to refrain from stating my real feelings on this, so I thank you for helping out in that regard.
"MAINE'S LEPAGE EYES WALKER-LIKE PLAN" - Cha - 03-23-2011 10:39 PM
I have to add this earlier record(from Feb 27, 2011) of LePage slobbering over Koch's Walker..
Reposted with Benen's permission..
.... When looking at the national landscape and GOP union-busting efforts, we obviously start with Wisconsin. Ohio, Florida, and Tennessee are likely labor battlegrounds, too.
Yesterday, Maine's buffoonish governor, Paul LePage ®, signaled his interest in waging a related fight with unions.
Maine Gov. Paul LePage said Saturday he would push forcefully ahead with right-to-work legislation in his state, even if it means a Wisconsin-style fight with unions.
In an interview at the National Governors Association, the Republican praised Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and couched his own proposal in the language of liberty loved by tea partiers."He's got a big challenge, and quite frankly, once they start reading our budget they're going to leave Wisconsin and come to Maine because we're going after 'right to work,'" LePage told POLITICO.
Maine, like Wisconsin, not only recently elected a right-wing governor, but also created Republican majorities in the state House and state Senate. That said, much of the state GOP is fairly moderate, and may not be eager to embrace LePage's scheme.
The governor predicted yesterday, "You know, it's going to be a battle."
This has, by the way, been another interesting week for LePage. State policymakers are exploring the effects of the chemical bisphenol-A, a common additive to plastics, accused of being dangerous to children. The Republican governor declared this week that he's not inclined to care.
"Quite frankly, the science that I'm looking at says there is no [problem]. There hasn't been any science that identifies that there is a problem," LePage said, overlooking the science that suggests there may be a problem. He added, "The only thing that I've heard is if you take a plastic bottle and put it in the microwave and you heat it up, it gives off a chemical similar to estrogen. So the worst case is some women may have little beards."
Maine voters elected quite a governor, didn't they?
—Steve Benen 8:45 AM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (28)
RE: Mean-spirited Gov of Maine Takes Down "Labor Mural" in Lobby of Dept of Labor.. - SeattleGirl - 03-23-2011 10:42 PM
From an article at TPM:
LePage's Office: People Complained Labor Mural Resembled "North Korea"
Defending his decision to take down a mural at the Department of Labor building and change the name of conference rooms considered too pro-labor, a spokeswoman for Gov. Paul LePage released a faxed complaint comparing the art to North Korean propaganda.
"In this mural I observed a figure which closely resembles the former commissioner of labor," an anonymous fax given to the Portland Press Herald reads. "In studying the mural I also observed that this mural is nothing but propaganda to further the agenda of the Union movement. I felt for a moment that I was in communist North Korea where they use these murals to brainwash the masses."
A spokeswoman for the governor, Adrienne Bennett, told TPM that while she didn't want to "give validity" to the specific sentiments in the fax, it was one of numerous complaints brought up by senior policy staff when the LePage administration took over the department.
"The message we want to send is 'We're here for you,' for job creators and employees," she said. "The decorum needs to represent neutrality."
Link to full article: http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2011/03/lepages-office-people-complained-labor-mural-resembled-north-korea.php
There is a picture of part of the mural at the link. North Korea? Really?? I think it looks like a representation of hard working people.
RE: Mean-spirited Gov of Maine Takes Down "Labor Mural" in Lobby of Dept of Labor.. - Cha - 03-23-2011 10:58 PM
(03-23-2011 10:42 PM)Punky Wrote: From an article at TPM:Those Fuckers are the propagandists and of course they start slinging their shit at everyone else.
Quelle Horreur..they look like workers..oh the Shame.
"Berry was particularly upset to see FDR Labor Secretary Frances Perkins denigrated by the governor's decision to remove her name from a conference room and her depiction from the mural given her historic achievements and her ties to the state.
"She was from Maine and the amount of work that she did for the working men and women of this country was phenomenal," he said. "Unemployment, Social Security, the first woman to hold a cabinet position -- to take her name off the door is just appalling."
They want to take away all memories of their hard earned, wonderful history..now they're coming for the workers..who's next?
RE: Mean-spirited Gov of Maine Takes Down "Labor Mural" in Lobby of Dept of Labor.. - SeattleGirl - 03-23-2011 11:18 PM
(03-23-2011 10:58 PM)Cha Wrote:(03-23-2011 10:42 PM)Punky Wrote: From an article at TPM:Those Fuckers are the propagandists and of course they start slinging their shit at everyone else.
Disgusting and maddening, isn't it?
DFP thread with link to the whole mural - nofurylike - 03-24-2011 12:01 AM
words can not express ....
Quote:My only hope is that these extreme acts of fascism will be responsible for extreme acts of Activism from the actual people who hold this country together.
HEAR, HEAR! Cha, !!!
here is a link to Dimwitted Fool's thread on this:
Wanna see the whole Maine labor mural?
thank you for posting this, Cha! thank you for it, Steve Benen!
RE: Mean-spirited Gov of Maine Takes Down "Labor Mural" in Lobby of Dept of Labor.. - DFW - 03-24-2011 12:53 AM
I think Cha got it right--what this whole thing takes away more than anything is people's dignity. When you lose your dignity, your self-respect, you become far easier prey for manipulation, and that is the ultimate Republican goal: to make people think that if they have nothing, they are better off than if they try to improve their lot. A slave by any other name, so to speak.
It is the old Soviet tactic--"it is so good to be one of us, anyone who says it could be better is unpatriotic, and lying anyway." From North Korea to Cambodia to Albania, it was all the same: an elite enjoyed the good life on the backs of impoverished workers, who were convinced by a steady barrage of one-sided propaganda that they had it better than anywhere else. The trick of Fox is that they have managed to convince people to swallow their line even when they have a choice to listen to other points of view--a neat trick indeed.
But this can only be accomplished when people lose their dignity. But what dignity can middle-aged people have who go out in ugly shorts with bulging tree trunk thighs, wearing straw hats with teabags hanging from them, carrying misspelled signs urging the President of the United States to "show us the birth certificate?"
The removal of dignity has not only begun, it is well underway.
RE: Mean-spirited Gov of Maine Takes Down "Labor Mural" in Lobby of Dept of Labor.. - NJMaverick - 03-24-2011 05:37 AM
The unnamed business owners are his Koch brother masters. The asshole is strong in this one. Not only is he a vile lacky toady for the Koch brothers, but he is just a nasty mean spirited creep.
Like when the Taliban destroyed the historic Buddha statues - NJMaverick - 03-24-2011 05:38 AM
same irrational hatred
RE: Mean-spirited Gov of Maine Takes Down "Labor Mural" in Lobby of Dept of Labor.. - Sugarloaf - 03-24-2011 06:52 AM
My little state of 1.2 million has been making national news over and over ever since LePage was elected. LePage has repeatedly embarrased us w/one gaffe after another. Telling the President that "he can go to hell", telling the NAACP to "kiss my butt", swearing at an NPR reporter... I could go on and on. And now this. It's a non-stop thing. Just when we begin getting over one outrage, he adds another and on it goes.
This past election has been a nightmare for us. We not only ended up w/LePage, but we also lost BOTH the state house and state senate to R's who ran on a teabagger platform. And because Maine is one of only a handful of states whose legislature elects constitutional officers, our State AG, our Secretary of State, and State Treasuruer are all now Republicans. Overnight we went from an almost solidly blue state (republican US Sens, Snowe and Collins being the one exception) to almost solidly red (democratic US Reps Pingree and Michaud now being the only blue exception).
It's been one outrage after another ever since, not just w/LePage but all of them. Another one of LePage's recent bright ideas is to replace our sign on I-95 that said "Welcome to Maine, the way life should be" to this... "Welcome to Maine, we're open for business"... ... Sorry about the rant
Here is a heavily edited (as per DFP rules) New York Times artlicle on the mural issue...
Mural of Maine’s Workers Becomes Political Target
By STEVEN GREENHOUSE
Published: March 23, 2011
Mr. LePage has repeatedly clashed with labor unions since his inauguration in January. He is pushing for a higher retirement age for public employees and for “right-to-work” legislation that would allow union members to stop paying dues or fees.
Mike Tipping, a spokesman for the Maine People’s Alliance, a progressive group, said, “People elected Governor LePage, hoping he would create jobs and not get involved in the interior decoration of state offices.”
Charles Scontras, a labor historian at the University of Maine, said: “Totalitarian regimes erase history as well. We manage to do it by indifference or neglect or for ideological reasons.” He voiced surprise that a Franco-American like the governor, whose wife was once a union steward, would take such a move when the mural honored the work that generations of Maine’s Franco-Americans had done in the shoe, textile and paper industries.
RE: Mean-spirited Gov of Maine Takes Down "Labor Mural" in Lobby of Dept of Labor.. - Cha - 03-24-2011 02:34 PM
(03-24-2011 05:37 AM)NJMaverick Wrote: The unnamed business owners are his Koch brother masters. The asshole is strong in this one. Not only is he a vile lacky toady for the Koch brothers, but he is just a nasty mean spirited creep.Exactly! LePage is already on record for wanting to outdo the Koch puppet Walker.
Hopefully, soon they will join the big asshole trash pile of history..the others are waiting.
RE: Mean-spirited Gov of Maine Takes Down "Labor Mural" in Lobby of Dept of Labor.. - Cha - 03-24-2011 03:37 PM
Oh Sugarloaf I commiserate with you!
Thank you for this NYT piece..the more that's discussed the more LePage is exposed. I'd never seen him before..he doesn't look well.
RE: Like when the Taliban destroyed the historic Buddha statues - Cha - 03-24-2011 03:37 PM