Big Brother Is A Big Sister In Oklahoma

At first I thought it was one of those things you hear about that only Snopes can properly dispose of.

I received a text from someone who wrote:

How about that Oklahoma governor. Signed that wacko bill. No minimum wage laws allowed in her state. No paid sick leave or vacation days.

That Okie governor, of course, is Mary Fallin, a Republican in the mold of, say, well, I can’t say. GOP Jesus broke the mold when he made Governor Fallin. In any case, I discovered that what she actually signed two days ago was a bill that bans cities in Oklahoma from passing a higher minimum wage requirement than the state’s current minimum (which is set at the federal level of $7.25), and that bans those cities from enacting sick and vacation leave requirements on behalf of workers. I also found out that other states have passed such laws (mostly states that have been dominated by domineering Republicans, like in Texas, for instance) and that other states are considering such laws.

Now, because we’ve been over it before, I won’t harp on the false ideas that are behind keeping the minimum wage as low as possible, from the notion that minimum wage jobs are mostly held by kids in high school or college who are working part-time jobs (the average age is actually 35; one-third are at least 40 years old; more than one-fourth have kids to support; more than half work full-time), to the notion that a relatively higher minimum wage hurts job growth (the most one can say is that it is a mixed bag). And I won’t even harp on the outrageous idea that a family-values FALLINparty like the Republican Party pretends—pretends—to be would ban cities from passing sick and vacation leave requirements that would benefit workers in their cities (thank about that the next time you eat a fast-food burger that may have been cooked by a sick worker who couldn’t afford to stay home that day). No, I won’t harp on that stuff. We’re all used to the idea by now that Republicans aren’t exactly the friends of the working class, even if they’ve cleverly managed to talk a lot of working class folks into putting them in power.

What I will harp on is the hypocrisy of what Republicans have done relative to the cities in their respective states. This latest power grab in Oklahoma came about because there is an effort underway in Oklahoma City to establish a higher minimum wage than that anachronistic $7.25 federal wage. And Governor Fallin and the corporatists in her state can’t have the locals doing their own thing, if doing their own thing conflicts with larger business interests. So much for that “local control” that Republicans are always throwing at us when they talk about how much they hate big gubmint. It’s funny that when things start happening among the natives that right-wingers don’t like, they are the first ones to move in with the foot of the state and crush any grass roots movement, or in the case of women trying to exercise their right to control their reproductive health, Republicans move in with a government-mandated vaginal probe, which is a manifestation of Big Brother that even George Orwell never imagined.

6 Comments

  1. Bbob

     /  April 16, 2014

    I will be eighty-two Friday. I had thought I had seen most of the crap that politicians dish out, but, again, I am surprised by this. What sort of god do these radical religious righties worship? Have they no shame? Aren’t they supposed to take care of the poor (New Testament)? Aren’t they supposed to be their brothers’ keepers (Old Testament)? Or is their philosophy, “I’ve got mine. Too bad about you.” I wonder where it says that in their Bible. I’d like to see chapter and verse quotations. Maybe it’s in the Old Testament where the tribes massacre other tribes? I couldn’t harbor a guess where such crap would be in the New Testament, but I haven’t studied the Bible for many years.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hope you had a great birthday, Bob! You asked, “What sort of god do these radical religious righties worship?” In much of American evangelicalism, they worship a god who is a strange concoction of free-market radicalism, social conservatism, and “family values” that doesn’t include expanding Medicaid for families that need it. In other words, they worship GOP Jesus!

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  2. http://democratbydefault.com/2014/04/15/republicans-fight-back-against-small-government/

    I feel like you and me would have a lot to talk about. I very much appreciate that you were able to make the same small government/local control connection. I honestly think there is still a large group of Republican voters out there that go to the polls and vote straight ticket because they liked Eisenhower.

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    • Loved that essay, Travojones! We do have a lot in common it seems, although you are still a Christian and I don’t consider myself to be one (although I’m not an atheist). I also don’t consider myself to be a “Democrat by default.” I clearly abandoned many of the old political values I held as a Bill Buckley/Rush Limbaugh conservative. (By the way, I loved that reference to Russell Kirk; I used to hear Buckley and other conservatives say all the time that conservatism wasn’t an ideology at all. Well, I suppose you could say the same thing about liberalism, if you wanted to. It, too, can be a “state of mind.” But I failed then and I fail now to see the cosmic point they were trying to make.)

      In any case, I appreciate the fact you took the time to send me that link to your blog and keep up the good work.

      Duane

      Liked by 1 person

      • Yeah, I’ve abandoned a decent amount of the conservative ideas I once had, but on some of them, I just grew up and realized there are better ways to address them. I probably moved much further left than I would normally admit (and I might need to change up my home page to reflect it), but I think 15 years ago, I would be left-center…in today’s political world, the right has moved so far to the right, my left-center views are now hippie progressive wackoisms. And I’m comfortable with that🙂

        My faith is one of those things that I consider to be very personal. The only reason it comes out in my political rantings is when a politician abuses religious faith for political gain. I believe in a strong wall of separation, and I don’t think the church should have any stake in any political issue whatsoever, and while I think passion and conviction are great things for anyone to have, I think it’s time for Christians globally to add in grace and humbleness to the equation.

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        • You speak the truth about how far the right has moved. Sometimes I wish one of my mentors as a conservative, William F. Buckley, was alive and commenting on the current state of affairs. I can’t believe he would support some of what is going on, although later in life he did manage to throw his arms around Rush Limbaugh.

          As for your faith, I like what you say very much. I don’t think evangelicals realize how much damage they are doing to the bare-bones gospel by heaping on top of it all kinds of Republican cultural and economic dogma, not to mention setting it in a literalistic context that offends many educated people. Add to that the fact that the resulting theological amalgam is often delivered with such hateful rhetoric that it is a wonder any young folks are attracted to it, much less stay in the fold when they grow up.

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