Union Busting: Right-Wing Media Relentlessly Attack Worker Organizations

August 12, 2010

Media Matters, the media research and watchdog website, has compiled a report on the growing trend of vicious, slanderous attacks on unions by Fox News, Rush Limbaugh and other conservative media. The August 5 report  is titled, “Union busting: Right-wing media relentlessly attack worker representation.” It finds that “Media conservatives have waged a relentless war against labor unions, blaming them for a wide variety of problems and smearing them as 'communists' and 'thugs,' among other attacks.”

A few examples:

On his August 4 radio show Glenn Beck said of unions: “Look what they’ve done to the police and firemen. They’ve raped these guys. Along with politicians. Along with politicians — raped them.” Beck went on to ask, “What, do you think the politicians are not in bed with the unions?” On the April 14 edition of his radio show, Beck warned listeners of “a possible super-union coming” with “extraordinary power.” He added: “And they’re thugs. Out-and-out thugs. Not the members, the unions.”

Rush Limbaugh has attempted to smear unions as violent, declaring that the Employee Free Choice Act should be titled “The Union Brass Knuckles Busting On Your Knees Act.” On the October 19, 2009, broadcast of his radio show, Limbaugh said, “Until we get rid of the unions, we’re not going to have any change in public schools.” Limbaugh continued: “If you want to clean up the schools, get rid of the unions.”

During the January 11 edition of Fox News’ Your World with Neil Cavuto, Stewart Acuff of the Utility Workers Union of America appeared to discuss union opposition to a tax on health care plans backed by President Obama. Cavuto told Acuff: “You politely do your Tony Soprano thing, albeit in your little sweater vest there.”

Read the Media Matters report here.


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