Cambridge City Council to MIT: Halt Layoffs

Peter Wilson
American Thinker
8/11/2010

A local story in Cambridge, Massachusetts illustrates the sense of entitlement that government officials have adopted under the Obama administration.

The Cambridge Chronicle reports that City Councilor Marjorie Decker is not amused with the behavior of her subjects over at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Commissar Decker and the Cambridge City Council issued a fiat in April ordering MIT to maintain full employment, “to halt layoffs and any cuts in hours, salary or benefits for employees.” MIT, however, faced a budget shortfall and was forced to cut $125 million from its budget, of which 10% came from job layoffs. The Chronicle quotes MIT HR director Alison Alden: “Layoffs were a last resort at MIT. We worked very hard to avoid this.”

Ms. Decker wasn’t having any excuses: “What we said to you, to MIT, was ‘Don’t contribute to the destabilization of families in our community.’ And we got zero response … For me, that is just an incredible level of arrogance that not only does the council not matter, but this question of really who they impact doesn’t matter.” This is a classic case of projection; Councilor Decker herself exhibits a level of arrogance one might expect to find in the nomenklatura of a totalitarian society. “How dare you disobey me?” she appears to be asking. “Don’t you know who you’re messing with here?”

The enraged Decker went public with a threat summarized in the Chronicle headline, that she will, “Ignore MIT until it respects workers.” No doubt MIT’s feelings won’t be hurt if the City Council ignores them, but Decker’s threat entails more than ignorance; she announced that she will vote against any permits or licenses that MIT applies for. In other words, Councilor Decker’s votes on a license will be decided not by the merits of the application, but by an unrelated human resources issue.

It’s no secret that politicians use coercion to consolidate their fiefdoms, but have we reached the point where they brag about blackmail on the front page of the newspaper?

The article continues at the American Thinker.

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